Wednesday is Veterans Day, a federal holiday in the United States that recognizes people who have served in the armed forces. Congress passed a resolution making it official in 1926 that requested Americans "observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples."
These days, what's open and closed for the observance changes depending on where you are and what you're seeking. Schedule your time off by looking at the following list:
Post offices will not be delivering mail and offices will be closed Wednesday. UPS recognizes, but does not observe, Veterans Day, so don't worry about that. Amazon.com doesn't consider Veterans Day a "major holiday" either, so you don't need to expect shipping delays. FedEx will provide normal pickup and delivery, as well.
Social Security offices will be closed, as will most states' Department of Motor Vehicle offices. Hospitals don't close, but you should call ahead to make sure the specialists you're seeking are in. Garbage pickup varies depending on where you are, so call your local collector. Same goes for schools and libraries, neither of which are required by the government to close.
Big banks under the Federal Reserve System will be closed, though individual locations of corporate chains may set their own rules. For example, while Sun Trust and Wells Fargo will be closed, TD Bank will be open. If your bank is closed, the ATM and website will likely still function, but transactions may take a while to show up in your account.
National Parks are open. Actually, Veterans Day is one of the system's entry fee-free days, so take advantage. The NYSE and NASDAQ do not observe Veterans Day and will operate as normal. The U.S. bond markets will be closed.
Transportation schedules will vary by city, but many major systems will offer only reduced service. The Metro in Washington, D.C. will operate on a Saturday holiday schedule, while Metropolitan Transit Authority in New York City will operate on a weekday schedule. In any case, you should allow extra time to get to where you're going.
Most stores will still be open, including CVS, Walgreens and Walmart. Same goes for restaurants, many of which are offering special Wednesday-only deals for members of the military.