While traditional holidays honor famous people, historical events and momentous occasions, one day in March actually celebrates a letter in the Greek alphabet! 3/14 is Pi Day, an annual "holiday" that celebrates the mathematical symbol that represents a constant, the "ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter", which happens to be around 3.14159.
Founded by the Prince of Pi, physicist Larry Shaw, Pi Day was first celebrated at the San Francisco Exploratorium in 1988. People celebrated by eating fruit pies and marching around in a circular space. Today, Pi Day is celebrated all over the world. Activities include math-related events, games, exhibits, pie baking or pie eating contests and anything pi-related. In 2009, the United States House of Representatives passed House Resolution 224 designating March 14 as National Pi Day. And Google even celebrated the occasion with a special Google Doodle.
How to Celebrate Pi Day
- Why not whip up a delicious homemade pie?
- Enjoy a delish pizza pie, of course.
- Make it movie night with a slew of Pi related films. Pi, a 1998 film about a paranoid mathematician who searches for a number that will "unlock the universal patterns found in nature."
- Watch 21 Grams, a film starring Sean Penn and Naomi Watts.
- A Beautiful Mind, starring Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly, is a 2001 film loosely based on the life of mathematician, John Nash.
- Good Will Hunting, a 1997 film written by and starring Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, is about a janitor at MIT who has a special gift.
- Watch the Ang Lee film, Life of Pi.