International Lifeguard Appreciation Day

🗓️ On This Day - July 31st

There are plenty of great reasons why July 31st is a date worth remembering – and that’s whether or not it’s already a special day for you! Here’s a breakdown of July 31st across history and beyond, with a few celebrity birthdays added in for good measure.

On this day

Navy rum

No rum, no more!

Believe it or not, the Royal Navy used to have a ration of rum for everyone onboard the fleets! This came to an end more recently than you probably think – on July 31st, 1970!

Cold War

The US and USSR bring the Cold War to a close.

While some say the Cold War never truly ended, the START I treaty, signed between America and Russia on this day in 1991, saw both countries agree to reduce strategic arms. The treaty came into action three years later, but would expire by 2009.


Landmines are no-gos!

In a landmark landmine move, the British government passed a law that stated landmine use was to be banned outright. The Landmines Act came into force after years of public pressure, and following high-profile campaigning by the late Princess of Wales, Diana Spencer.

Fidel Castro

Castro handed over Cuba.

Well, to another Castro, anyway! July 31st, 2006 marked the day long-term Cuba leader Fidel Castro passed his Presidency over to his brother Raúl as caretaker. Raúl would become full-time President of Cuba two years later.

interesting facts about swimming

Michael Phelps made Olympic history.

In 2012, swimmer Michael Phelps – regarded as one of the greatest modern Olympians of our age – claimed his landmark 19th Olympic medal upon his shared victory in the 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay event.

Special Days Falling on July 31st

Struggling to find reasons to raise a toast on July 31st? No worries – we’ve got you covered! Here are some fascinating holidays you might want to take part in.
International Lifeguard Appreciation Day

International Lifeguard Appreciation Day

For those of us who enjoy swimming or simply taking a stroll along the beach, it’s great to know there’s someone who can help us if high tide gets too much to handle. Today marks a great occasion to show your local lifeguards some love – they’re instrumental in helping to keep people of all ages safe from the threats of open water.

World Ranger Day

World Ranger Day

While we’re at it, let’s celebrate our park rangers, too! Park rangers help to keep our wilderness safe for all to enjoy, while working hard to preserve our natural land from human activity. Park rangers are there to protect us all from both wild animals and ourselves – and today’s the day to thank your local ranger for their hard work.

Navy rum

Black Tot Day

Black Tot Day is something of a historical relic – as mentioned above, the Royal Navy used to provide crew with a daily rum ration, and this was known as the “tot.” This tradition ran for around 239 years before the concept was brought to an end on July 31st, 1979. Today’s the day Navy fanatics remember the end of the rum – and maybe swig a glass or two of their own!

This page was last modified on July 26, 2023. Suggest an edit