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Calendar of Holidays and Religious Observances

CSUSM strives to create an inclusive campus environment where campus members understand, respect, and effectively navigate differences.  In our increasingly diverse workplace and learning environment, it is important to be aware of major religious holidays that members of our campus community may observe. While it is hard to avoid all conflicting dates, please take into consideration the observance of religious holidays that have a significant impact on academic planning and other activities. Offices, departments, and student organizations are encouraged to refrain from scheduling college-wide or other major events on holy days, especially those dates on which people of a given tradition usually do not work or attend school. Students seeking accommodations for class attendance, academic assignments, or athletic practice/events to observe a religious observance should contact instructors or coaches by the end of the first week of classes. An instructor who believes that the anticipated absences would preclude the successful completion of the course or would seriously affect the student’s grade shall inform the student by the end of the second week of class.  See Student Absence from class for University Events and Religious Observances Policy.

Please note that the calendar below is not a comprehensive list. A description of each holy day may be found below the calendar. Suggestions for additions to this list may be directed to the Office of Inclusive Excellence. or 760-750-4039

Religious observances may fall on different dates from year to year because many are calculated based on a lunar calendar. Dates of religious observances may also vary regionally.

Thank you for your part in creating an inclusive environment,

 The Office of Inclusive Excellence


*Jewish and Muslim holy days begin at sundown on the first day indicated.
**Holy days on which absence from work or school is common. 



Religious Observations

May 26* – June 25



June 24* – June 25

**Eid al-Fitr


August 31* – September 1

**Eid al-Adha


September 20* – 22

**Rosh Hashanah


September 29*-30

**Yom Kippur


September 30* – October 1



October 4* – 11



October 19

Diwali begins (5 days)


December 12* – 20



December 25



January 7

**Feast of the Nativity

Orthodox Christian

February 14

Ash Wednesday

Catholic/Protestant Christian

February 16

Lunar New Year

Many traditions in most Asian nations

March 2 – 3



March 30* – April 7



March 30

**Good Friday

Catholic/Protestant Christian

April 1



April 6

**Holy Friday

Orthodox Christian

 April 8

**Pascha Orthodox Christian
 Various dates in April

Water Festival

Many traditions in most Asian nations

April 11* – 12

 Yom HaShoah


May 15* – June 14



May 19* – 21



June 14* – 15

**Eid al-Fitr


  • Ashura

    Shi’a Muslims commemorate the martyrdom of Husayn ibn ‘Ali, the third Shi’ite Imam and grandson of Muhammad, observing the day by mourning his death. Sunni Muslims commemorate God’s freeing of the Israelites from slavery to the Pharaoh of Egypt by observing a fast. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Ash Wednesday

    Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, the 40-day liturgical season in which many Catholic and Protestant Christians prepare through fasting, prayer, and penance for renewing baptismal promises at Easter.
  • Christmas

     A holy day celebrating of the birth of Jesus. Orthodox Christians often refer to it as the Feast of the Nativity and the Incarnation of Christ. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Diwali

     A fall festival of lights signifying the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair. Rituals of lighting candles and other forms of light extend over a five day period, with the primary celebrations on the first night.
  • Easter/Pascha

     A day celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Eid al-Adha

     This day commemorates Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son to God. Muslims celebrate with the customary sacrifice of animals, sharing of the sacrificed animals’ meat with family and the poor, a special Eid prayer, and social gatherings. Celebrations may last up to three days. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Eid al-Fitr

     This day marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan and the first day of the month of Shawwal. The day begins with a special Eid prayer and involves day-long festivities. Celebrations may last up to three days. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Good/Holy Friday

     A solemn holy day commemorating the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ. Many Roman Catholics and Orthodox Christians observe it as a fast day. Christians of many denominations attend worship services. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Hanukkah

     Hanukkah (alternately spelled Chanukah) is the eight-day celebration commemorating the victory of the Maccabees over the Syrian army in 165 B.C.E. Hanukkah is a minor holiday in terms of religious practice, but it is a special and joyous time of year.
  • Holi

     A spring festival of colors celebrating life and signifying the victory of good over evil. Participants frolic in parks or other open areas, chasing and covering each other with dry colored powder and water.
  • Lunar New Year

     One of the most important festivals celebrated in Asian cultures. In the West, Lunar New Year is often referred to as Chinese New Year. Activities include making offerings to household deities, hosting banquets for family and friends, and festive parades.
  • Pesach/Passover

     A major Jewish festival lasting seven days, Pesach (Passover in English) commemorates the Exodus of Jews from slavery in Egypt. The ritual observance of this holiday centers upon a home service called the seder (meaning "order") and a festive meal. Jews often attend ritual observances on the first, second, and final evenings. Many Jews refrain from leavened bread product and matzo is eaten instead.
  • Ramadan

     The ninth lunar month of the Islamic calendar, which adult Muslims observe by fasting every day, abstaining from all food, drink, and sex from before dawn to sunset.
  • Rosh Hashanah

     The Jewish New Year, which marks the beginning of a 10-day period of prayer, self-examination, and repentance known as the High Holy Days. Many Jews observe it with prayer and reflection in a synagogue. Absence from work or school is common on the first day of Rosh HaShanah.
  • Shavuot

     This festival marks the receiving of the Torah at Mount Sinai. It is a celebration of Torah, education, and actively choosing to participate in Jewish life.
  • Sukkot

     Sukkot, meaning "booths" or "huts," is the seven-day festival of giving thanks for the fall harvest.
  • Yom HaShoah

    This solemn day serves as a memorial to those who died in the Holocaust. Shoah, which means catastrophe or utter destruction in Hebrew, refers to the atrocities committed against the Jewish people during World War II. It is also known as Holocaust Remembrance Day.
  • Yom Kippur

    The holiest day on the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur means "Day of Atonement" and refers to the annual observance of fasting, prayer, and repentance. Absence from work or school is common.
  • Water Festival

    The New Year’s celebration in several Southeast Asian countries. In some regions, dragon boat races are held and lanterns floated on rivers to bring blessings. People splash water at one another in a boisterous cleansing ritual of good will.

Additional Interfaith calendar information.