A hero can be anyone even a man doing something as simple and reassuring as putting a coat around a little boy’s shoulder to let him know that the world hadn’t ended.Ben Affleck
The first fictional superhero stories were published in a comic strip in 1936 (Phantom), then in 1940 a female counterpart was introduced (Fantomah), and since then hundreds of them have been created and developed. And now, when we think of Superheroes, it’s all too common that what comes to mind is a man or woman with special powers, donning a tight, spandex suit that is often brightly colored, garishly patterned, and inevitably has the underwear on the outside.
While caped crusaders and masked vigilantes are certainly one type of superhero (and these can be super fun to enjoy and dream about in the world of fiction), these are certainly not the only kind!
Other kinds of superheroes are out there in the world, who are probably less obvious but no less important. These are the heroes who are firefighter’s, police officers, hospital workers, those that drive ambulances or Medivac Helicopters. Or, sometimes they just wear the clothes of a mother or father hard at work.
National Superhero Day is here to remind people all over the world that superheroes can come in any shape, size or color, and being one is more about valor of the heart than having actual super-powers.
National Superhero Day is the perfect time to let the heroes of this life be identified and celebrated!
History of National Superhero Day
National Superhero Day first got its start in 1995, when Marvel Comics employees went out into the world to ask kids what superpowers they would want to have if it were possible. The results surprisingly revealed that these kids ended up talking more about superheroes in their own lives, and how they often looked like a normal person.
National Superhero Day reminds everyone that, most of the time, superheroes are just everyday people who rise to the occasion of helping when threats happen. Not only that, but this is an ideal that can be passed on and practiced in our daily lives.
Every day, men and women go out in the world and face difficulties in their lives and livelihood to help protect others from the dangers of fire, crime, and unexpected health issues. But the list of superheroes in real life doesn’t even end there!
Someone helping the homeless with food or clothes, comforting a crying stranger, or stopping to help someone with a flat tire on the side of the road can all be considered superheroes.
When National Superhero Day comes around, it’s the perfect time to keep the eyes open for these superheroes in disguise and be sure to give them some recognition!
How to Celebrate National Superhero Day
Celebrating National Superhero Day can be a whole load of fun! Take the time to acknowledge and celebrate all kinds of heroes with some of these ideas:
Celebrate Superheros at Work or at School
Create an event for National Superhero Day that can acknowledge and honor the everyday superheroes in life. Have everyone wear their favorite superhero costume to work or to school and let them explain why this particular hero is their favorite. Be sure to honor and acknowledge special heroes from among the group.
Be Sure to Thank Superheroes
Whether organized with a local group such a scout troop, school, youth group or book club, or simply a gathering of concerned citizens, saying ‘thank you’ to local heroes is a great activity for National Superhero Day.
Get together to make thank you cards, posters, or even little gifts (such as cookies or other treats) and arrange to take them to a local fire station, police station, teachers’ lounge or hospital. These small gestures of thanks can mean a whole lot to those people who are making helpful contributions to society each day.
Support a Local Children’s Hospital
Past celebrations of National Superhero Day have included volunteers who go to children’s hospitals dressed up as various superheroes from comics and films, such as Superman, Wonder Woman, Spider-Man or other fictional characters. In doing so, it brings joy to the children and also gives a sense of appreciation to the people (doctors, nurses, and other staff) who work or volunteer at the children’s hospitals as they give so much to help children who need them.
Get Creative with National Superhero Day
For a fun time with kids (or adults!) try applying the theme of superheroes to crafts, baking or other activities. Make cupcakes or cookies and decorate them with superhero-themed colors or designs. Try making superhero masks for family members. Grab some Marvel Comics or DC Comics books, read them together as a family or, even better, start writing and/or illustrating a new comic book together! Any type of superhero activity can be loads of fun and a great reminder that everyone can be a hero.
Be an Everyday Superhero
A perfect way to celebrate National Superhero Day is to get in touch with your own inner superhero. Keep your eyes open for those who are in need of help and instead of thinking “someone should do something”, step up and be that someone. From sharing lunch with someone who forgot theirs to helping a stranded person change a tire on the side of the road, countless ways exist that people can all be superheroes in everyday life!