When was the first Pi Day celebrated?

Need another reason to celebrate today? Today is a celebration of math that can also trickle down to dessert!

March 14 is celebrated by mathematicians because the numbers “3-14” represent the ratio of a circumference of a circle to its diameter, which is approximately 3.14159.

The uniqueness of this calculation is that it doesn’t end at “59” but has been calculated to more than 50 trillion digits beyond the decimal point.

Pi (a Greek symbol) is the symbol used in math to represent the unique value. The earliest observance of Pi Day was in 1988 by an employee of the San Francisco science museum, the Exploratorium.

Pi Pie, created at Delft University of Technology, applied physics, seismics and acoustics (Courtesy of Wikipedia Commons)

While mathematicians often discuss the significance of Pi on March 14, others may observe the holiday by eating and throwing pies! Pie, of course, is a homophone for the dessert we eat, sometimes every day!

If you miss today’s celebration, try again in July! Pi Approximation Day is observed on July 22 because the day of the month (22) divided by 7 (7th month of the year) equals the approximation of Pi (3.14).

Chad Merrill

Chad Merrill is a meteorologist and digital weather content producer for WTOP. Prior to joining WTOP, Chad was a meteorologist in the private industry and television. He loves to share his passion with listeners and readers and is eager to hear from anyone who has any weather questions!

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