Even if I don’t have a particular stake in a holiday, I’m always excited when they roll around because they’re a great reminder to do some quick character work for your screenplay.
Columbus Day is an interesting holiday to consider because it means different things to different people. Some people consider it a day commemorating the discovery of a new world, while others see it as the enslavement of a people.
As an exercise:
Think about what your character would be doing today? Would they be at work? Home with their family eating a big meal? Stuck in traffic as the parade goes by? In the parade? Participating in a protest? Watching a Tom Selleck movie? Watching a Gerard Depardieu movie? Or on a boat recreating a great adventure?
By taking a minute to consider how your character spends a holiday, or just what they do on their day off, you can learn important information about what’s important to them.