Build a Scarecrow Day is celebrated on the first Sunday in July. This year the U.S. celebrates it on July 3. Farmers make scarecrows to protect their crops from unwanted animals and birds that may ruin their harvest. The custom spans back to ancient times when people of European origin would leave straw mannequins that resembled people as a way to ward off evil spirits who were thought to bring drought and famine.
History of Build A Scarecrow Day
Although very little is known about the origins of Build a Scarecrow Day, scarecrows have been around for centuries and can be found in many cultures worldwide. The oldest record of a scarecrow is in ‘Kojiki,’ a Japanese book written in 712 A.D. The book mentions a scarecrow called Kuebiko, described as a deity who cannot walk but knows everything about the world.
The earliest mention of a bird-scaring device was in 1390 when children were sent into fields with sacks on their backs and poles attached to startle birds away from crops. The first known use of the word scarecrow was in 1560, although this referred to an actual human who stood in fields to frighten birds away from crops.
Farmers eventually built scarecrows that looked like people so that birds would be too afraid to approach the fields because it looked like people were working in them. This kept birds from eating the seeds they planted so that they could grow into crops that could be harvested and sold or eaten.
Build A Scarecrow Day timeline
Ancient Egyptians use straw scarecrows, or in some cases, even slaves, to scare away birds from their crops.
The oldest literary record of a scarecrow is in 'Kojiki,' a Japanese book.
Children serve as bird-scaring devices as they are sent into fields with sacks on their backs and poles attached to them to startle birds away from crops.
The first known use of the word ‘scarecrow’ refers to an actual human who stands in fields to frighten birds away from crops.
Build A Scarecrow Day FAQs
Do scarecrows actually work?
Scarecrows have been a popular bird deterrent for centuries. If you use them correctly, they can keep birds off your crops. You’ll need to resituate them once a week at least before birds realize that they’re not a real threat.
What does a scarecrow symbolize?
Scarecrows are meant to frighten crows away from crops, so they’re often eerie and frightening. They’re considered pseudo-human creations.
What is the fear of scarecrows called?
Formidophobia is the fear of scarecrows.
Build A Scarecrow Day Activities
Create your own scarecrow
Tie the material you choose for stuffing around the frame to create the body of the scarecrow. Next, put the clothing on and tie it at the ends of each arm and leg with string or twine. Although not entirely necessary, you can put shoes on and fasten them tightly with more string or twine, so they don't fall off.
Dress up like a scarecrow
Dressing yourself up in the raggedy attire of a scarecrow is a fun way to celebrate the day. You can also invite friends over and have a dress-up party.
Decorate your garden
A scarecrow is a great addition to any yard, especially if you have a garden that birds like to raid. If not, they make good garden decor. Some people even go as far as making them look like themselves or other people they know.
5 Facts About Scarecrows
No two scarecrows are exactly alike
It’s impossible to build precisely the same scarecrow.
Different place, different name
Scarecrows are also known as strawmen, tatterdemalion, ragamuffin, and shaggy’s.
There is a Japanese village called Nagoro, which has 35 inhabitants, but over 350 scarecrows.
World record for scarecrows
The U.K.'s National Forest Adventure Farm holds the world record for the largest gathering of scarecrows ever in one place, with 3,812 scarecrows on display at once.
The comic-book publishers Marvel and D.C. both have a character called Scarecrow, although the two are very different.
Why We Love Build A Scarecrow Day
It brings back memories
Nowadays, scarecrows are rarely used in agriculture. With Build A Scarecrows Day, we bring back memories of them.
The Build A Scarecrows Day Festival draws large crowds every year. This creates the opportunity to gather with friends and enjoy the entertainment on offer.
The day gives families the chance to spend quality time together. Kids will be delighted with the various scarecrow-themed activities.
Build A Scarecrow Day dates