Thursday, March 11, 2021

Get Out! Or Stay In! There's a Constant Cause for Celebration on 3.14

Image by: Endlessly 777 (Creative Commons)

by Peggy Robin

We’re coming up on one of the best holidays of the year. It’s something universal, a day for anyone to celebrate, no matter what background or culture you're from, no matter what your religion (or lack thereof). All that is required is the belief that there is such a thing as a circle -- and that it can be measured.

I’m talking about PI DAY!

This year – and every year – Pi Day falls on March 14 – which as you know, is 3.14 (the first three digits of pi).

What do you do to observe Pi Day? Many things. The main activity is to recite the digits of Pi, going as far as your memory takes you. In some math classes they give prizes to the kids who can recite the longest string of digits of pi without making a mistake.

If you are truly observant of the rituals of Pi day, then you will step outside on Sunday, 3.14, at precisely 1:59 PM, wait 26 seconds, and start reciting. The really hard-core will do this at 1:59 AM (in the wee hours of the morning of March 14), knowing that in scientific terms, there is no 1:59 PM; there’s only 13:59 on the 24-hour clock.

Consider these whimsical add-ons: When you recite the digits of Pi, you wear a pie tin on your head as a hat. You can take two more pie tins and use them as makeshift cymbals (symbols?), banging them together with one bang for every digit you proclaim.

Pi Day has its own special food, too – all pies, of course!

Your meals on Pi Day will be pizza pie or shepherd’s pie or any other savory, meal-sized pie -- and if you're really into pies on Pi Day, be sure to start your day with an egg pie (a/k/a quiche). Your dessert can be an apple pie, a cherry pie, or any type of pie you like -- but do try to incorporate the symbol for pi (π) into the top crust or made from chocolate shavings or sprinkles or whatever creative use you can make of edible decorations.

If you don’t make the pie for Pi Day at home, you can always order delivery. Across the nation, pie-makers (whether pizza parlors or pastry shops) will often have special promotions and discount deals on Pi Day. You can google it.

Also, via google, you will find Pi Day activities, including math games, crafts, and songs. Yes, there are Pi Day Songs!

"Hey, It’s Pi Day"
"100 Digits of Pi"
Piano music created from the digits of Pi:
"March 14 Is Super Pi Day" (music video to the tune of Pharrell’s "Happy" 

Here are some resources:

Pi Day – A Million Digits:
10 Fun Facts About Pi Day:
20 Fun Facts About Pi Day:
3 Ways Pi Can Explain Practically Everything:
31.4 Mathtastic Pi Day Activities for the Classroom:

And for the last –and BEST!– suggestion for enjoying this 3.14.2021, browse these 31 pies for Pi Day (all with links to recipes):

And may your Pi Day be infinitely non-repetitive!

The "Get Out!/Stay In!" events column is published on the Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local on Thursdays. 

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