March in the USA: Weather, Holidays & Festivals

March is a great time to travel in much of the U.S. as the weather is getting warmer and the days are getting longer—especially after the second Sunday of the month when daylight saving time begins.

March Weather in the USA

Much of the U.S. has begun to thaw out by March as average lows in even the coldest areas start to climb out of the freezing zone.

But winter doesn’t officially end until late March, which is why the month is considered one of the best times to visit winter sports havens like Alaska and Colorado. In March, the snow is plentiful, the days are longer, and the crowds are thinner. Average temperatures in Anchorage, Alaska, in March range from a high of 31 °F (-1 °C) to 20 °F (-7 °C).

Of course, by March, many of us in the northern hemisphere have had enough of the cold weather and are looking for somewhere warm and sunny to visit. March (and sometimes April) is typically the Spring Break month for schools and universities. So many U.S. vacationers—from families with school-age kids to college students—head to beachy destinations in Florida and along the Gulf Coast, where daily highs average in the low to mid-70s (20-25 °C).

March Average Temperatures and Precipitation

Below are the average temperatures in March for some of the most popular U.S. destinations.

CityAverage High/Low °FAverage High/Low °CAverage # Rainy Days
New York City52 / 36 F11 / 2 C8
Los Angeles70 / 52 F20 / 11 C4
Chicago45 / 34 F7 / 1 C5
Washington, D.C.56 / 35 F13 / 3 C7
Las Vegas72 /39 F21 / 10 C2
San Francisco63 / 50 F16 /9 C7
Honolulu82 / 67 F27 /19 C6
Miami77 / 67 F25 /19 C4
New Orleans73 /54 F22 /12 C5
Anchorage31 / 20 F-1 / -7 C3
Denver58 / 29 F14 / -2 C3
Source: NOAA

March Major Holidays, Events, and Observances

  • Women’s History Month
  • Spring Break (see also April)
  • Early March – Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race
  • March 8 – International Women’s Day
  • (As late as) March 9 – Mardi Gras (see also February)
  • Second Sunday of March – Daylight Saving Time begins
  • March 20 – First day of spring
  • (As early as) March 22 – Easter Sunday (see also April)

March Calendar: U.S. Anniversaries and Events

March 1

  • Salem Witch Trials in Salem, Massachusetts, begin as Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne, and Tituba are brought before local magistrates (1692)
  • The Articles of Confederation, a constitution between the original 13 colonies, goes into effect in the United States (1781)
  • Nebraska becomes the 37th U.S. state (1867)
  • Yellowstone National Park is established as the world’s first national park (1872)

March 10

  • Harriet Tubman Day

March 14

  • Pi Day

March 19

  • “Return of the Swallow.” This is the annual observance of the swallows’ return to Mission San Juan Capistrano in California.

March 21

  • World Poetry Day (LIST some poetry here)

March 25

  • Maryland Day (Maryland). This holiday commemorates March 25, 1634, the date on which English settlers landed in what is now the state of Maryland.

March 26

  • Prince Kūhiō Day (Hawaii). One of two holidays in Hawaii that commemorates royalty (see also June), Prince Kūhiō Day celebrates the birth of Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole, heir to the throne of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi.

March 31

  • César Chávez Day. A day of observance since 2014, this day commemorates the life and work of labor activitist César Chávez.
  • Thomas Mundy Peterson Day. This day observes the legacy of Thomas Mundy Peterson of Perth Amboy, New Jersey, who was the first African-American to vote in an election following the enactment of the 15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
  • Transfer Day (U.S. Virgin Islands). This day celebrates the day in 1917 when Denmark transferred ownership of the Virgin Islands to the United States.