February 22 is Cat Day in Japan. It is a day to love, celebrate, honor and basically just go nuts over cats. The Japanese are cat lovers to the extreme. Estimates are they have about 10 million cats and as Japan is a series of small islands this is a lot of cats. They even have an island just for cats. And architecture that looks like cats!
Japan is the originator of cat cafes. Good fortune and prosperity is sought with the Maneki Neko at the New Year, they created Hello Kitty (and here and here) and so it is logical that they have a day devoted to their love for this special creature.
Known as Nyan Nyan Nyan day this festivity started 30 years ago. February 22 (2/22) was the selected date as the number 2 in Japanese is ni and putting it as a date ni ni ni when spoken sounds very similar to nyan (meow) and so Nyan Nyan Nyan day came about. Growing from the original 400 people who came together in 1987 to say prayers and give thanks for their cats it now is a day full of cat themed foods, activities, cosplay and appreciation of all things feline that happens all round Japan, and it seems around the world in Japanese communities.
Want to be part of the celebration and festivities? You can post a picture of your cat, food, you dressing up to Cat Day in Japan Twitter page and be part of the fun!