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Skidmore College
Religious and Spiritual Life

Holidays and Religious Observances

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Conscientious Religious Observance Policy

If religious observances cause absence from class, campus employment, athletic practice, and/or game days or necessitates accommodations, students should notify their faculty, coaches, or supervisors prior to the date(s) of their absence. New York State policy and Skidmore College policy mandates that students be allowed to make up academic work and/or campus employment requirements without penalty. These accommodations should not reduce the overall expectations of a course nor unduly burden the student requesting accommodation. Faculty must permit students to take a makeup examination without any penalty if they have to miss an examination due to religious observances. Similarly, faculty must permit students to submit missed assignments by an agreed upon due date, without penalty.

Although not required, the College highly recommends that students submit written notification of the pending religious observances at the start of the semester or at least one week before the date. As an option, students may use this form [here]. Distributing the written notification during the first week of classes, campus employment, or the start of the athletic season gives students, faculty, coaches, or supervisors time to prepare for the absence.

If a student, supervisor, coach, or faculty member feels the policy is being violated, they should contact the Dean of Faculty Office at 518-580-5705 (Palamountain 416), the Dean of Students Office at 518-580-5760 (Case Center 313), or Human Resources at 518-580-5800 (Barrett Center first floor).

The above language was adopted by CEPP and IPPC in Spring 2020

Calendar 

Fall 2021 

Spring 2022

About the Calendar:  This Calendar is a work in progress. It does not contain every holiday or observance that may be important to members of our community.  Suggestions and corrections are welcome.  If you have questions, corrections, or additions regarding this calendar, please contact our office

Daily, Weekly, and Monthly observances: This page does not include dates and times of daily, weekly, monthly, and other regular observances. We recommend checking the ORSL weekly schedule, asking for feedback from potential participants, and announcing dates and times as early as possible to accommodate these practices. We are happy to discuss potential accommodations including dietary considerations, prayer space, schedules for all-day events, alternative service times, and access to off-campus gatherings.  

Dates change every year: Calendar systems vary and many religious observances occur on different dates of the (Georgian) calendar each year. 

Terminology: Many names and terms used in this calendar have multiple spellings and transliterations in English usage. Effort has been made to use widely recognized spellings.  Some terminology is used for efficiency and clarity (such as references to "Western" or "Eastern" Christianity) even as we acknowledge that they do not perfectly reflect current understandings of religious history and demographics. 

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fall semester 2021

SEPTEMBER 2021

  • 6-8 Rosh Hashanah: Jewish, evening Monday September 6th through evening Wednesday September 8th. 
    • Observances include attendance at services including the first evening and during the following two days
  • 3-10 (or 3-12) Paryushana/Das Lakshana Dharma: Jain, dates vary by sect and community. 
    • Observances may include fasting
  • 10 Ganesh Chaturthi: Hindu
  • 15-16 Yom Kippur: Jewish, evening Wednesday September 15th - evening Thursday September 16th 
    • Observances include attendance at services, including the first evening and throughout the next day, and fasting from food and drink 
  • 20-27 Sukkot: Jewish, evening Monday September 20th - evening Monday September 27th 
  • 20-24 Mabon, Wiccan and neo-Pagan, dates vary
  • 22 Autumnal Equinox: Northern Hemisphere, multiple traditions 
  • 27-28 Shemini Atzeret: Jewish, evening Monday September 27th - evening Tuesday September 28th 
  • 28-29 Simchat Torah: Jewish, evening Tuesday September 28th - evening Wednesday September 29th 

OCTOBER 2021

  • 6-15 Maha Navaratri (Sharada Navaratri), Durga Puja (Oct 10-15), Dusherra (Oct 15): Hindu, dates and traditions vary 
  • 11-21 Ayambil Oli: Jain
    • Observances may include fasting and additional dietary restrictions 
  • 18-19 Mawlid Nabi: Muslim, evening Monday October 18th - evening Tuesday October 19th
  • October 31 - November 2nd: Various observances, see November listings

NOVEMBER 2021

  • October 31 - November 2nd: Various observances, including:
    • Samhain: Wiccan/Neo-Pagan, primarily October 31 - November 1
    • Día de Muertos: including Central and South American cultural, indigenous, and Christian traditions, number of days varies
    • All Saints and All Souls: Christian (Western Liturgical), Primarily November 1-2 (Roman) or November 1 (Anglican, Lutheran, and others)
  • 4 Diwali/Deepavali: Multiple communities including Hindu, Jain, Sikh, Newar Buddhist
    • November 1-6: Depending on the community and tradition there may be festivals and pujas related to Diwali/Deepavali during these dates 
  • 6-7 Birth of the Báb and Birth of the Baha'u'llah: Baháʼí 
  • 25 Day of the Covenant: Baháʼí 
  • 25 Thanksgiving Day: United States, cultural
  • 27 Ascension of ʻAbdu'l-Bahá: Baháʼí 
  • 28 Advent begins: Christian (Western Liturgical), Advent lasts until December 24th 
  • November 28 - December 6th Hanukkah: Jewish, evening of Sunday November 28th - evening of Monday December 6th, with the last night of Hanukkah candle lighting on Sunday December 5th. 

DECEMBER 2021 

  • November 28 - December 6th Hanukkah: Jewish, evening of Sunday November 28th - evening of Monday December 6th, with the last night of Hanukkah candle lighting on Sunday December 5th. 
  • 8 Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception: Christian (Roman Catholic), Holy Day of Obligation 
  • 24-25 Christmas Eve, Christmas/Nativity: Christian (Western)
  • December 26 - January 1 Kwanzaa: African American and African diaspora, related religious and cultural traditions vary 

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Spring semester 2022

JANUARY 2022

  • 1 New Year's Day: Traditions vary, including some religious observances 
      • Solemnity of Mary, Holy Day of Obligation for Latin Rite Catholics, US
  • 6 Epiphany: Christian, Western
  • 6-7 Christmas: Christian, Eastern - evening of Monday January 6th - Tuesday January 7th 
  • 16-17 Tu BiShvat: Jewish, evening of Sunday, January 16th - evening of Monday, January 17th 

FEBRUARY 2022

  • 1  Lunar New Year: Chinese lunisolar calendar and related calendars, including Chinese, Korean, Mongolian (Tsagaan Sar), and Vietnamese (Tết). Dates of New Year observance vary widely between communities, regions, and traditions, including between different lunar calendars. 
  • February 25 – March 1 Ayyám-i-Há: Bahá’í

MARCH 2022

  • 1 Maha Shivaratri: Hindu
  • 1 - 20 Month of ‘Alá’: Bahá’í, evening of February 28th - evening of March 19th. 
    • Observances include fasting by abstaining from food and drink from sunrise to sunset 
  • 1-2 Imbolc: Wiccan and Neo-Pagan
  • 1 Shrove Tuesday/Mardi Gras: Christian (Western), additional communities and traditions 
  • 2 Ash Wednesday: Christian (Western)
    • Observances include fasting and attendance at services
    • At Skidmore: services are usually available on and off campus, including an ecumenical service on campus traditionally led by Roman Catholic and Protestant clergy. 
  • March 2 - April 14 Lent: Christian (Western)
    • Observances may include abstention from certain foods and drinks, often including meat. Traditions around fasting vary and include both daily and weekly practices. 
  • March 7 – April 23 Great Lent: Christian (Eastern)
    • Observances may include abstention from certain foods and drinks, often including meat. Traditions around fasting vary and include both daily and weekly practices. 
  • 16-17 Purim: Jewish, evening of Wednesday, March 25th - evening of Thursday, March 17th  
  • 18-19 Holi: Hindu, South Asian cultural, dates vary. At Skidmore: student organizations often organize a Holi celebration for later in the semester to honor the arrival of warmer weather in upstate New York.
  • 19-23 Ostara: Wiccan, dates vary
  • 20 - 22 Naw-Rúz: Bahá’í, Persian cultural, and additional communities, dates vary
  • 20: Spring Equinox: Northern hemisphere, various traditions 

APRIL 2022

  • April 2 – May 2  Ramadan: Muslim, anticipated days (official start and end days determined by religious leaders at the time, days begin at evening)
    • Observances may include fasting with abstention from food and drink from sunrise to sunset, attendance at services, and additional prayer times
  • 2-10: Chaitra Navaratri/Vasanta Navaratri: Hindu, dates may vary, includes New Year’s Day for the Hindu lunisolar calendar
  • 10 Palm Sunday: Christian, Western 
  • 14 Maundy Thursday: Christian, Western 
  • 15 Good Friday: Christian, Western
    • Observances may include attendance at services and fasting.
  • 15-23 Passover: Jewish, evening Friday, April 15th - evening Saturday, April 23rd
    • Observances scheduled primarily on the first two and last two days, including seder gatherings the evenings of April 15th and 16th. 
    • Dietary practices include abstention from leavened bread and other grain products.
    • at Skidmore: Traditionally a first night seder is held on campus and second night seders hosted on and off campus. Chametz-free dining options are available at the Dining Hall and for catered events.
  • 16 Holy Saturday: Christian, Western 
    • Observances may include fasting and abstention from celebratory gatherings
  • 17 Easter: (Christian, Western) 
    • Observances include attendance at services on Saturday evening (April 16th) and/or Sunday (April 17th)
  • 24 Pascha/Easter: Christian, Eastern 
    • Observances include attendance at services, including the evening of the Saturday (April 23rd). 
  • April 30 - May 1 Beltane: Wiccan, dates vary

MAY 2022

  • April 2 – May 2  Ramadan: Muslim, anticipated days (official start and end days determined by religious leaders at the time, days begin at evening)
    • Observances may include fasting with abstention from food and drink from sunrise to sunset, attendance at services, and additional prayer times
  • 3-4 Eid al-Fitr: Muslim, Evening of Monday May 2 through Evening of Tuesday May 3rd (anticipated dates, official date to be determined by religious leaders closer to occurrence)
  • 18-19 Lag BaOmer: Jewish, evening Wednesday May 18th – evening Thursday May 19th
  • 26 Ascension of Jesus: Christian (Western Liturgical) - Holy Day of Obligation for Roman Catholics

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