George W. Bush, the then President of the United States issues a proclamation about the holiday.
Most Presidents have also taken the opportunity to praise the spirit of exploration
and discovery and the contributions to American society and culture of those
of Nordic descent.
Leif Erikson Day honors the viking explorer of the same name. He is the first
recorded Nordic person to have visited the area that is now the United States.
It is believed that he visited Baffin Island and Labrador around 1000 CE. He
is now honored with a holiday in the USA.
Leif Erikson Day is not a federal holiday. Public life is not usually affected
by this observance. Public transit systems run on their regular schedules.