Saturday is April 1, or, as it is popularly called, Fools' Day. The holiday is celebrated by playing lighthearted pranks on family and friends. The origin of this fun tradition is unclear. Some believe it began in 1582 when France moved from the Julian calendar — which started the new year around April 1 — to the currently used Gregorian calendar. Anyone unaware that the new year now began on January 1 was pranked. Others think the custom began to celebrate the start of spring.
No matter how it began, April Fools' Day is now popular worldwide. Even companies get into the spirit with elaborate pranks that have people fooled for hours and sometimes even days. Here are a few of our past favorites.
Virgin Airlines' Canine Crew
In 2019, Virgin Airlines introduced a canine crew to help make long-haul flights easier. The video featured a charming squad of dogs greeting passengers as they boarded the aircraft. The friendly pooches were available to provide companionship to those who were bored. They could even be taken for walks around the aircraft cabin. The only catch? The exciting news was revealed on April Fools' Day!
7-Eleven's "Tiny Gulp"
In 2022, 7-Eleven created a buzz by introducing the "Tiny Gulp." The 0.7-ounce soda serving cost just 7 cents. It seemed like the perfect treat for health-conscious customers craving a sugary drink. Unfortunately, the announcement was made on April 1!
BBC's Flying Penguins
On April 1, 2008, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) released a video showing flying Adélie penguins on Antarctica's King George Island. The discovery of the flightless birds taking to the skies caused a stir of excitement around the world. It was only after the BBC shared a second video (see below) explaining the "miracle" flight that people realized they had been pranked.
Happy April Fools' Day!
Resources: CNet.com, BBC.com, CNN.com