What Is Square Root Day? The Mathematical Holiday Is Awesome To The Nth Power

Happy Square Root Day! Apparently, April 4, 2016 is one of the unofficial holidays that occur when the month and day are the square root of the last two digits of the year. (In this case, month number four multiplied by day number four equals 16.) Yes, this is a thing, and math nerds are all about this (because evidently, math is fun). Math never came easily to me, but I can certainly appreciate a day that will help me remember my square roots in moments of hopelessness. That said, Square Root Day is important to the nth power because it's not only a holiday in itself, but there are also some cool things happening on the day right now.

For one, it's the long-awaited annual start to the baseball season. Major League Baseball is encouraging fans to wear their caps to commemorate the event with the hashtag #CapsOn. It's also the NCAA basketball championship (after the Final Four, which followed the Sweet Sixteen), which makes today ultra-special for basketball fans. The Villanova Wildcats (with a 34-5 record) will face the North Carolina Tar Heels (who have a 33-6 record) at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas for the highly-anticipated final game in the division one college basketball season.

While Pi Day occurs once a year, Square Root Day only comes nine times in a century. This century, it has fallen on Jan. 1, 2001, Feb. 2, 2004, Mar. 3, 2009, and Apr. 4, 2016, and will later occur on May 5, 2025, Jun. 6, 2036, Jul. 7, 2049, Aug. 8, 2064, and Sept. 9, 2081. These dates truly make a person feel like a mere mortal, right?

Apparently, Ron Gordon, a former California high school teacher, long campaigned for Square Root Day awareness back in 1981, and he feels it is a day worth celebrating. Why not? It's worth acknowledging, if only for the mathematics benefits — it's like a lunar eclipse or a Super Moon, which only happen occasionally. Gordon even made a website to promote observation of the day!

Take some time to enjoy a favorite sporting event, square dance, or do some math — and feel slightly more learned in the process. It's a fun holiday that doesn't require any cards, gifts, or spending at all, so it's simply fun to sit back and enjoy the day. After all, the next won't happen until 2025.