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August1–7

International Clown Week – August 1-7, 2023

International Clown Week is celebrated every August 1 to 7 to recognize the efforts clowns across the world put in just to make people laugh. Yes, clowning around is not a piece of cake and you have to be pretty talented to be able to make a crowd of people laugh. Believe it or not, clowns have come a long way and, once upon a time, even held a special place as jesters in the courts of powerful kings and rulers. The performances of clowns include music, storytelling, acrobatics, juggling, telling jokes, and performing magic tricks. And yes, these are just some of the activities you get to enjoy this week!

History of International Clown Week

Clowns are performers who use different forms of humor to entertain the audience. While being a clown seems easy, the fact is, it takes an innovative kind of genius to be able to tickle someone’s funny bone. A clown has to be witty, creative, and full of energy, regardless of his or her personal circumstances. Since being a clown requires extra effort, International Clown Week is celebrated every year to honor the profession that lightens up lives.

Clown Week started sometime in the 1950s where it was initially celebrated on a limited scale. It is said to have been conceived by a man called Walt Savage. In 1966, the President of the Clown Club of America, appointed Frank “Kelly the Clown” Kelly, as the first International Clown Week chairman. The first American chairman of National Clown Week, on the other hand, was Bill “Boom-Boom” Baily. He was also an original member of Clowns of America when it was founded in 1967. It was Bill who later insisted that National Clown Week be publicized and also be scheduled as an annual event. In his efforts to ensure this became a reality, he visited Washington, D.C. with other clowns and lobbied the U.S. Congress. In 1970, President Nixon proclaimed the first official National Clown Week. This later became an international event and in 1988, Ray Bickford was appointed as the first International Clown Week chairman. Today, International Clown Week is celebrated across the world with numerous fun activities, including clown performances.

International Clown Week timeline

2400 B.C.
The Ancient Clowns

The first known clowns make an appearance.

16th Century
Masking It

An Italian theatre introduces masked clown characters such as Harlequin and Pirouette.

1768
The Clown Act

Clowns become famous as a part of the circus.

1981
Evil Clowns

Men dress up as clowns and harass school children in Boston.

International Clown Week FAQs

What day is International Clown Day?

On every May 24, International Clown Day is celebrated to pay a tribute to clowns.

Is clown a profession?

Yes. Clowns are recognized as actors and comedians with the job of making people laugh. 

What is a female clown called?

A female clown is known as a ‘clunt’. However, most people aren’t aware of this term. 

How to Celebrate International Clown Week

  1. Watch a clown perform

    Head out to the circus or any other place where a clown is performing in order to see why the profession has managed to win our hearts for centuries.

  2. Post photos with clown

    Celebrate the week by posting photos of clowns or sharing some fun experiences on social media. The aim is to make sure clowns never go out of fashion.

  3. Invite a clown to a party

    Host a party for the neighborhood kids and invite a clown so they can have the time of their lives. We are sure you will be left in fits of laughter too.

5 Fun Facts You Need To Know About Clowns

  1. The origin of the word

    The word ‘clown’ comes from the Icelandic word ‘klunni,’ which means a ‘clumsy person.’

  2. The first U.S. circus clown

    Matthew Sully was the first circus clown in America.

  3. The clown code

    Clowns have their own set of rules known as the ‘Clown Code of Ethics’.

  4. The boss

    A Boss Clown is responsible for leading the other clowns.

  5. Scared of clowns

    Coulrophobia is the fear of clowns.

Why International Clown Week is Important

  1. It honors the profession

    The week honors the profession and lets clowns across the globe know that their efforts to keep others smiling are recognized.

  2. Clowns are given jobs

    Due to the vast number of activities held throughout the week, numerous clowns are provided with well-paid jobs that help them earn a little extra.

  3. It’s a fun-filled week

    The week is special since it also gives others the opportunity to relax, have some fun, and watch a few hilarious clown routines.

International Clown Week dates

YearDateDay
2023August 1Tuesday
2024August 1Thursday
2025August 1Friday
2026August 1Saturday
2027August 1Sunday
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