MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Wednesday is a day when you should trust no one, eat no food in the office and believe no stories that sound even remotely suspect. For centuries, we’ve been honoring April 1 as April Fools’ Day, trying to make fools out of our friends and family.
So, how did April Fools’ Day even start? The exact origin is still uncertain, but some theories abound.
First, ancient cultures used to celebrate New Year’s Day around April 1. But in 1582, Pope Gregory XIII ordered the Gregorian calendar replace the Julian calendar, so New Year’s shifted to Jan. 1. The theory goes, anyone who continued to celebrate New Year’s in April was considered a fool.
But others argue April Fools’ Day comes from spring renewal festivals in Europe, where people would dress up and play pranks on each other.
Some of the most memorial April Fools’ Day pranks have included Ely announcing its bid for the 2016 Olympics, Google Nose allowing people to search for smells and Taco Bell’s announcement back in 1996 that they’d bought the Liberty Bell.