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National Ding-A-Ling Day is all about the idea of connecting with family members or friends, particularly those where it has been some time since chatting, therefore making the connection that “ding-a-ling” is the sound of the bell ringing from a phone.

History of National Ding-A-Ling Day

Although this probably sounds like a newly established holiday, surprisingly, National Ding-A-Ling Day actually has roots that can be traced back more than 50 years. It was in 1972 that a man named Frank Hyle from a suburb of Chicago, placed a free advertisement inviting folks to join the National Ding-a-Ling Club. With an original group of over 850 members, the purpose of this club was to call friends and relatives they hadn’t heard from in awhile. And the date of this calling activity took place each year on December 12.

One fun fact to go along with this history is that the National Ding-a-ling Club got its start in 1972. This was also the same year that Chuck Berry’s song “My Ding-a-Ling” became a number one hit on the Billboard charts. It’s an interesting connection to make!

Though it seems impossible to find any remaining traces of the original club, the essence of the group remains through the annual celebration of National Ding-a-ling Day.

How to Celebrate National Ding-A-Ling Day

Those who want to participate in National Ding-A-Ling Day can certainly aim to get involved in a number of creative ways. Consider some of these plans and activities to get started with:

Call Friends and Family

Keeping with the spirit of the founders of the day, the first order of business on National Ding-A-Ling Day would be to think of some friends and family you haven’t heard from lately and give them a call. Ask them how they are, what they’ve been up to, what interesting hobbies they are involved in or how the family is faring. It’s a nice gesture to catch up with folks from the past.

Those who aren’t as much into making phone calls can certainly still connect in a wide range of ways. Perhaps reach out by sending a text message, an email, or even reach out on one of the social media outlets like Facebook or Instagram in honor of the day. But, of course, there’s nothing quite like hearing someone’s voice to bridge the distance created by space and time.

Share with Someone in Need

One other connotation that the image of “ding-a-ling” might conjure up during the winter holiday season is the idea of a guy dressed up as Santa and ringing a bell. Today, they may not always be dressed as Santa, and they may be of any gender, but the tradition of red kettles and a person ringing a bell continues.

The solicitation of donations is done through the Salvation Army, which is a charitable organization associated with an international church. This organization uses the kettles to raise funds around the Christmas holiday season so that they can give back to people in need. So, in celebration of National Ding-A-Ling Day, maybe it would be a nice idea to carry some spare change or a few dollars to place in the red kettle to help someone else out.

Make a National Ding-a-Ling Day Playlist

Get into the fun of the day by creating a fun set of music, whether playing it in the background or intentionally dancing to it. Of course, it would be just right to start out with Chuck Berry’s original version of My Ding-a-Ling from 1972, or some other cover versions, but others songs might go along with the theme of bell-ringing as well.

Looking for song ideas to play in honor of the day? Check out a few of these to get started:

  • Bells Will Be Ringing by Bon Jovi (1994)
  • Ring My Bell by Anita Ward (1979)
  • Bells Are Ringing by Mary Chapin Carpenter (2008)
  • Christchurch Bells by Hothouse Flowers (1990)

Get a Little Silly 

For those who just need some permission to have a little fun right in the middle of December, the interpretation of National Ding-A-Ling Day could be loosened up a bit. Because most people know that the term “ding-a-ling” also refers to someone who is a bit odd or eccentric. So, in honor of the day, perhaps it would be fun to dress up in strange clothing, act a little silly, or perform some frivolous antics. This could be just the day to let go and have a little bit of fun!

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