Twins are more common than ever. Women are waiting until later in life to have children which means they are more likely to release more than one egg to be fertilized. Many couples are using the help of fertility treatments to have children which often leads to the conception of twins. Both of these factors, as well as the genetics of parents, lead to the creation of fraternal twins.
Identical twins are created when a fertilized egg splits in half. There is no cause for this and the process is completely random. Identical twins occur in 3 of every 1000 births and this rate has remained constant over time and is distributed evenly across all populations around the world.
Despite the fact that there are more twins than ever before, parents of twins will emphatically tell you that there is nothing ordinary about the experience of raising two babies at the same time. It is definitely something that should be celebrated, and National Twins Day does just that.
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When is National Twins Day?
Technically, National Twins Day is the first Saturday of August each year, but it is actually celebrated by a weekend-long festival.
How is National Twins Day celebrated?
Close to 3,000 sets of twins descend upon the town of Twinsburg, Ohio each year on the first weekend of August for the Twins Days Festival. It is the largest gathering of twins in the world.
The festival consists of several competitions including Most Alike, Least Alike, and Theme Outfits across several age groups. There is also a talent show and a Double Take parade that highlights twins. There are also activities for families to participate in such as golf and volleyball tournaments and a 5k to benefit non-profit groups.
Identical twins are often utilized for scientific research, so there is a tent set up at the festival to facilitate research since there are so many possible case studies available in one location.
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Throughout the weekend there are rides and entertainment for all to enjoy, and of course, you can not have a proper festival without a fireworks display!
How did National Twins Day begin?
In 1819, a pair of twins, Moses & Aaron Wilcox, donated six acres to the town of Millsville, Ohio in exchange for the town changing its name to Twinsburg. Starting in 1976, the town hosted a festival for twins in honor of the Wilcox twins. Only 36 twins showed up the first year of the festival. The town was not discouraged. It was the town’s unwavering commitment to their festival that led to the creation of National Twins Day. Today, Twinsburg is the epicenter of National Twins Day.
How to celebrate National Twins Day if you are a twin and can not make it to the festival?
If you are a twin, make a commitment to spend time with your twin on the first weekend of every August. If that is not geographically possible, make sure to take the time to call and catch up. A fun idea is to find photos of you and your twin over the years to post on social media. Make sure to use the official hashtag #NationalTwinsDay.
How to find out more about National Twins Day and the Twins Days Festival?
Go to the official website https://twinsdays.org/.
Some Fun Facts about Twins
- Identical twins do not have identical fingerprints.
- Massachusettes has the highest rate of twin births in the USA.
- Nigeria has the highest rate of twin births in the world.
- Twins have a higher rate of left-handedness than singletons, 22% vs 10%.
- Twins interact in the womb as early as 14 weeks.
- About 25% of identical twins are “mirror image twins” meaning they are exact reflections of each other.
- It is estimated that 40% of twins form their own language when learning to speak.
- Identical twins do not have 100% of the same genetics.
Whether twins are identical or fraternal, being a twin is a unique experience. Twins travel side by side with their sibling from the moment they are born.
Many a good meaning stranger will exclaim “double trouble” when seeing a pair of young twins. While this can be true, it focuses on the negative. Twins are also double the blessing. They are double the tears and double the smiles. Double the fights and double the tickles. Double the shouting and double the giggling. Double the wrestling and double the snuggling. But most of all, they are double the love.
National Twins Day celebrates all the doubles. It is a day that reminds busy twin parents to stop and reflect on their journey with twins and reminds twins what a special and unique bond they have.
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