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National Hanging Out Day – April 19, 2023

National Hanging Out Day is on April 19, and we are expecting a vibrant, colorful carnival-like celebration, with all kinds of linens and clothes hanging on the clotheslines. Clothes hang in the front and backyards in the neighborhood to dry in the sun and wind. It’s not a fashion statement or to display one’s wardrobe, but to show support for energy conservation and environmental preservation. Many people celebrate this day by hanging out their washed clothes in the open to mark the day.

History of National Hanging Out Day

In 1995, a New Hampshire–based environmentalist group called Project Laundry List, founded by Alexander Lee, came up with the National Hanging Out Day. Lee heard Helen Caldicott make a speech at a symposium in Middlebury College enticing people with the benefits of air-drying laundry and cold-water washing. Lee has since taken up the task to encourage this practice, and this day, dedicated to the cause of mobilizing people to ditch dryers and hand their clothes in the open, is celebrated annually.

Project Laundry List, hand in hand with numerous other organizations, has sponsored National Hanging Out Day. This initiative primarily aims to promote social awareness and encourage you to better take care of your clothes while, at the same time, taking care of the environment.

In 1998, when former Project Laundry List Director Alexander Lee was attending the Green Corps’ undergraduate Environmental Organizing Semester, United States Senator Dick McCormack from Vermont presented the Bill, Right to Dry. That’s how National Hanging Out Day was founded. Until the present day, Project Laundry List consistently works with other establishments to sponsor the event. National Hanging out Day is also sponsored by CLEAN, a coalition of environmental organizations. National Hanging Out Day aims to promote social awareness about the benefits of dry lining — hanging clothes out to dry directly, and utilizing solar energy rather than using electricity. You will have some cost-saving efficiencies when you choose open-air drying, instead of dryers, for your washed clothes.

National Hanging Out Day timeline

1995
Project Laundry List is Conceptualized

Dr. Helen Caldicott, a Nobel Peace Prize nominee of Project Laundry List, initiates the campaign to dry clothes outdoors.

1996
The Concept Becomes a Reality

Founder and former Director Alexander Lee writes the initial strategic plan for Project Laundry List.

2009
Current Events and Partnerships are Formed

Forging new alliances and becoming a member of CLEAN, Project Laundry List continues to push simple yet effective energy conservation ingenuities.

1998
Right to Dry is Introduced

Senator Dick McCormack of Vermont introduces the Right to Dry Bill, and the first National Hanging Out Day is established.

National Hanging Out Day FAQs

Why is it important to protect the environment?

Taking care of the environment enhances human health, protects our ecosystems and natural resources, battles climate change, nurtures economic growth, and ensures that future generations will still have an inhabitable place to live in.

Who invented the clothes dryer?

A French inventor named M. Pochon created the very first hand-cranked clothes dryer. It was W. Altorfer, however, who invented the first electric clothes dryer.

How many people use clothes dryers?

Studies show that in North America, 80% of all households use clothes dryers.

How to Observe National Hanging Out Day

  1. Hang your clothes outdoors

    If you can’t beat them, join them. What better way to celebrate than by being part of the action? If you are a person on the go and may find drying clothes too tedious as a regular laundry routine, just try it for a day. Who knows, knowing that you are helping to preserve the environment may encourage you to do this activity regularly.

  2. Post on social media

    Share the photos of your very own mini celebration on your social media accounts. It definitely helps raise social awareness among others who are not aware. Post your photos and support for the celebration on social media using the hashtag #NationalHangingOutDay.

  3. Push for change

    Talk to your family and friends and encourage them to be a part of the celebration. Offer to help set up their clothesline and/or clothes rack in their backyards.

5 Facts About Drying Clothes Outside That Will Blow Your Mind

  1. It is cost-effective

    It may be a pocket change but line drying reduces utility bills and it all adds up.

  2. It eliminates lint

    Hanging your clothes outside eradicates static cling, thus, eliminating lint sticking to your clothes.

  3. It is a natural disinfectant

    Clothes dried outside smell fresh even without using chemical fabric perfumes and conditioners because the sun disinfects and bleaches your laundry.

  4. It is beneficial to the body

    Line drying has some therapeutic effects on the human body.

  5. It reduces our carbon footprint

    According to studies, air-drying clothes drastically diminishes the average household’s carbon footprint by 2,400 pounds a year.

Why National Hanging Out Day is Important

  1. It makes life simple

    Simply put, National Hanging Out Day makes things simpler while, at the same time, conserving energy and resources. It may be dreary for some people who rely on technology to do chores daily, so start once a year and take it from there.

  2. It has long-term effects on nature

    Thinking of the cost efficiencies and the overwhelming long-term effects this celebration will have on the environment, no matter how small, are reasons to love National Hanging Out Day. Do your part today.

  3. It allows us to stay at home

    You don’t even have to leave your backyard to actively participate in this celebration. It is pleasurable to know that a simple chore can drive impactful, far-reaching global effects. National Hanging Out Day motivates us to start in our little ways to help preserve the environment.

National Hanging Out Day dates

YearDateDay
2023April 19Wednesday
2024April 19Friday
2025April 19Saturday
2026April 19Sunday
2027April 19Monday

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