NEW YORK – Move over, Friendsgiving. Galentine’s Day is on the way.
Designating Feb. 13 for the ladies has endured since 2010, when Amy Poehler’s “Parks and Recreation” character, Leslie Knope, declared the fictional holiday her favorite day of the year on the NBC show:
“Ladies celebrating ladies,” Knope explained of her Galentine’s breakfast bash with friends. “It’s like Lilith Fair, minus the angst. Plus frittatas.”
Since, women in real life have embraced the idea of gathering when Valentine’s Day rolls around. This year, some are particularly fired up, fresh off pink pussyhatted women’s marches the day after President Trump was inaugurated.
Galentine’s Day isn’t just for Feb. 13, and it isn’t just for dateless, single ladies. Jessica Gottlieb and Stefanie Pollard live in Los Angeles and will celebrate with a brunch for gal friends Feb. 12, a Sunday.
“We’re a couple of married ladies who really do love our husbands but plan on celebrating Galentine’s Day. Why? Because that march wasn’t just about being against Trump or for reproductive health. It was about women cherishing each other and our strengths and knowing that we need one another for physical health, emotional stability and career success,” said Gottlieb, who marched in her hometown.
Kaila Fiske in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is multitasking this year, celebrating Feb. 14 with her partner but reserving Feb. 17, a Friday, for dinner and a mass ladies night with 11 girlfriends to see “Fifty Shades Darker.”
“Most of us are in relationships, and we want an excuse to get together, just the ladies,” she explained. “We want to celebrate ourselves.”
Every Feb. 14 is extra special for Lauren Stiffelman in New York. It’s her birthday. She’ll be 28 this year and will celebrate at a Sunday brunch with about 15 girlfriends. On the 14th, it’ll be dinner with a small group of ladies at a Mexican restaurant on the Lower East Side.
“I try to pick a place that I can go to with my girls that won’t feel romantic, so margaritas and tacos really fits the bill,” she said. “I’ve actually only had a boyfriend once on my actual birthday, and he crashed the girls night out.”
Kim Terca lives in San Francisco and plans a destination Galentine’s Day with a friend in Miami. They’ll be in Havana.
“We’re both single with no Valentine’s dates, so this year we’re taking advantage of our freedom to run off and do whatever we want,” she said. “Cheers to being single!”
Kate Conroy in Plainfield, New Jersey, is the Galentine’s planner among her female friends. This year will be her third brunch. Significant others have started to show up, and there’s an after-party, she said.
“At our first one, someone did a toast, and when it was my turn to say a few words, I started with, ‘When I stole this idea from “Parks and Rec,” I assumed people would mock the idea.'”
They didn’t. About 20 participated last year.
Michelle Peterson is a Galentine’s newbie. She’s putting a karaoke night on the calendars of a few girlfriends for Feb. 11.
“I’m single, and all my friends are in relationships, so I wanted to be sure I got some friend time near Valentine’s Day,” she said.
As for Valentine’s Day itself, she’ll treat herself to some chocolate, a glass of red wine and a solo ticket to “Fifty Shades Darker.” That, she said, “seems like the ultimate single girl thing to do.”