August 16: Elvis Presley Commemoration Day, National Airborne Day, Roller Coaster Day, International Tell a Joke Day

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Elvis Presley Commemoration Day

Who can forget that fateful day in 1977 when we heard the news of Elvis Presley's death? Today marks the 35th anniversary of that sad day, as we remember and honor "The King." His popularity remains strong today -- his Facebook page has more than 6.5 million likes and in 1992, the U.S. Postal Service honored him with his own stamp.

Let's all celebrate together by reminiscing with some little known Elvis trivia.

* Elvis was a black belt in karate.

* Elvis' entourage was known as the "Memphis Mafia."

* Although Elvis recorded more than 600 songs, he wrote none of them.

* Elvis was a direct descendent of Abraham Lincoln's great-great grandfather and a distant cousin to Jimmy Carter.

National Airborne Day

On July 24, 2012, a resolution was introduced and passed in Congress to designate Aug. 16, 2012 as "National Airborne Day." This day honors all the airborne servicemen and women in all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. Aug. 16 was chosen as the date because it is the anniversary of the first official jump by the Army Parachute Test Platoon in 1940.

The text of the resolution "calls on the people of the United States to observe National Airborne Day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities."

You can celebrate this special day for America by thanking all the members of the airborne, past and present, for their service to our country.

Roller Coaster Day

Happy Roller Coaster Day! On Aug. 16, 1898, the roller coaster was patented. It has since become one of the world's favorite thrill rides at amusement parks across the globe. Its architecture has been modified and redesigned to accommodate rides for people of most all ages and interests. From tunnels to waterfalls to upside-down spirals, if you search long enough, you'll likely find one that pushes your adrenaline buttons.

Here are some interesting roller coaster facts that might surprise even the most avid fan:

* Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson Township, N.J., has the world's tallest and country's fastest roller coaster. The Kingda Ka is 456 feet high and reaches 128 mph in just 3.5 seconds.

* The Fuji-Q Highland Amusement Park in Japan has the world's steepest roller coaster. The Takabisha climbs 141 feet and then plummets at a 121-degree vertical drop.

* The world record for the longest continuous roller coaster ride was set by Richard Rodriguez in 2007, when he rode the Pepsi Max Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach in the UK for 17 straight days!

International Tell a Joke Day

Today is "International Tell a Joke Day," and although its origin is not clear, it may be related to Joe Miller's Joke Day, which is also celebrated on this day. (Joe Miller was a famous English comedic actor from the early 1700s.) Regardless of the origin, we shouldn't need an excuse to tell a good joke. So give it your best shot! Here's a timely one-liner to get you started:

Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?

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