Sweetest Day is coming up on October 18. While this day has an interesting history, which we’ll go into in just a short while, it’s also an opportunity to bring love and chocolates to your friends and loved ones. Kind of like a Valentine’s Day in October but focusing more on brightening people’s lives than romances, flowers fit this celebration like a hand in a glove.
Herbert Birch Kingston was a philanthropist and candy company employee in Cleveland, Ohio. He began Sweetest Day in 1922 to bring pleasure to those who wouldn’t necessarily have anything sweet in their lives—orphans, shut-in disabled people, and the like. He decided that he would donate candy and small gifts to such people, and started the movement that is followed today.
Kingston often asked movie stars to distribute the gifts. On the first ever Sweetest Day, actress Ann Pennington helped distribute 2,200 boxes of candy to newspaper boys. Theda Bara distributed 10,000 candy gifts to people in Cleveland hospitals—and to people who came to see her latest movie at the theater!
The movement quickly took off, though it’s still more popular in the Midwest. For us, the point is that it’s an opportunity to make someone happy. No matter where in the world they are, someone can receive a gift for Sweetest Day and feel as if they’ve been remembered—a nice, warm feeling.
The day is literally sweet; chocolates and candy are the gift of choice. A flower arrangement with chocolates added would be a perfect gift. Either you can perform a random act of kindness, or just celebrate the day with someone you know will appreciate a little bit of sweetness.
Will you be participating in Sweetest Day this year? Whom will you be giving a gift? We would love to hear your Sweetest Day stories—past and present both.