History of National Grandparents Day
National Grandparents Day began with the compassion of Marian McQuade, who
believed in recognizing the vital role of grandparents. This West Virginian housewife
encouraged Americans to value the knowledge and integrity that grandparents
possess. She called upon the help of political authorities, church leaders, and civic
organizations to gather support for the cause.
West Virginia's Governor, Arch Moore, announced the state's first Grandparents Day
in 1973. McQuade, along with her supporters, continued to campaign for this special
day by corresponding with media consultants and government representatives from
each state. After the approval of the United States Congress in 1978, President Jimmy
Carter signed a proclamation declaring Grandparents Day a National Holiday.
Grandparents Day is celebrated annually on the first Sunday after Labor Day.
September was selected to symbolize the autumn years of life.
The official song, "A Song for Grandma and Grandpa," captures the true meaning
of the holiday. United States Senator Debbie Stabenow told Johnny: "It is wonderful
that "A Song for Grandma and Grandpa" was chosen as the official song of National
Grandparents Day. You have put into words the unique relationship between
grandparents and their grandchildren." The act of remembrance signified by the
Forget-Me-Not makes it the perfect flower for Grandparents Day. The observance of
this holiday has gained popularity throughout the years and continues to grow stronger.
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The National Grandparents Day Song "A Song for Grandma and Grandpa"
was written and recorded by Johnny Prill
|Johnny Prill recording "A Song for
Grandma and Grandpa"
Johnny has been called "one of the most creative songwriters of our time"(Bobby Vinton).
From his hometown in Bad Axe, Michigan Johnny still possesses the same
immense passion for music as he did when he first began playing at the age of eight. This
zest is always apparent to anyone lucky enough to catch one of his shows. From a young
teenager volunteering to entertain the residents of a local nursing home to the many clubs
and venues he has performed at throughout the years, Johnny does everything a hundred
and ten percent.
In 2004, Johnny received the National Songwriter's Award from The National
Grandparents Day Council in Chula Vista, California. The award was presented
in recognition of Johnny’s highly popular composition, “A Song for Grandma and
Grandpa” which is now the official song of National Grandparents Day. Johnny's
song was chosen because it portrays the wonderful unique relationship between
grandparents and their grandchildren.
In 2013, the Johnny Prill Band celebrated 27 years of volunteering musical entertainment
at Courtney Manor Nursing Home. Each band member received a special recognition
certificate from State Sen. Mike Green, which was also signed by Gov. Rick Snyder,
a special recognition certificate from U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow and a special
recognition certificate from U.S. Rep. Candice Miller.
In 2011, the Health Care Association of Michigan presented Johnny with their
"Volunteer Of The Year Award."
Johnny presents a free outdoor concert annually to celebrate National Grandparents Day.
The concert is held at Courtney Manor Nursing Home where Johnny is their longest
running volunteer, entertaining residents once a month for over 27 years. Johnny states,
“They are our nation’s grandparents, and they are always so appreciative of the time I
spend with them. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to meet so many interesting
grandparents, and I hope I have the opportunity to meet many more.”
In 2010, American folk singer Pete Seeger congratulated Johnny on his award-winning
“A Song for Grandma and Grandpa” song and also on volunteering his musical talents.
Actress, comedian, and author, Betty White wished Johnny good luck stating,
"Johnny, Have a wonderful concert - be sure and sing A Song for Grandma
Comedian Phyllis Diller thanked Johnny for honoring grandparents with music.
Country music singer Barbara Mandrell congratulated Johnny on his volunteer work
stating “Your service through songs and volunteering is so remarkable!”
In a recent interview, Johnny had the opportunity to talk about has grandparents, his
volunteer work at local nursing homes and what inspired him to write "A Song for
Grandma and Grandpa." National Grandparents Day is celebrated on the first
Sunday after Labor Day.
In 2010, Johnny received an autographed photo from former President Jimmy Carter
stating, “Best wishes to Johnny.”
Johnny's songs have also been featured in numerous publications including Country
Weekly, The Las Vegas Weekly, The Detroit News, and The Detroit Free Press.
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Johnny Prill is a singer-songwriter
and the author of “A Song for
Grandma and Grandpa," the
official song of National
Johnny Prill Music
1955 Steinhardt Road
Bad Axe, MI 48413
Telephone: (989) 269-2158
Song for Grandma
National Grandparents Day .com
Celebrating Grandparents Day 365 Days a Year
|National Grandparents Day Song
A Song for Grandma and Grandpa (song clip)