Not only has spring sprung upon us but Fathers Day too. Each year the first Sunday of September families in Australia celebrate Fathers Day. Its that time of the year again for the perfect occasion to express feelings of gratitude and thankfulness to every dad in the world.

The history of Father’s Day dates back to 1909, in Spokane, Washington. A woman by the name of Sonora Smart Dodd was sitting in church listening to the Mother’s Day sermon. She found that during this sermon she began to think about her father and the influence he had had on her life and held the first Father’s Day on the birthday of her father on 19 June 1910. Soon the idea began to spread & in 1924, the US President of the day, Calvin Coolidge gave his support to the idea after Sonora Dodd sent him a petition.

A Father’s Day committee was formed in 1926, and while informally observed it wasn’t until 1972 that US President Richard Nixon passed a law that the 3rd Sunday of June would become a National Day to honor the way that father’s contribute to a family. Fathers Day spending tipped to struggle as consumer-spending strike continues

Business forecaster IBISWorld expects growth on Father’s Day spending to be below inflation in 2011, increasing just 1.72% from last year and forecasting that Australians will spend $28.10 on average on Father’s Day gifts this year. According to IBISWorld Australia general manager Karen Dobie, It is expected most will opt to take their father out for a meal instead of buying a gift

Gifts tipped to weather the drought are hardware and electricity retailers, which have been forecast to grow in spending by 4.7% However, IBISWorld industry analyst Paul McMillan stressed that “big ticket items are off the table”, with spending expected to consist of gift cards and other small items.

Disappointment may be in store for clothing, book and CD retailers, with online retailers offering bargains on these products. It is forecast all three will experience a 5% decline in spending from last year. However, Karen Dobie said cafes and restaurants would be the top earners from Father’s Day, with spending forecast to reach $157 million, up just 1.86 per cent on last year.

When times are good, we tend to buy a gift for Dad and treat him to a meal out as well. This year, buyers are expected to choose one or the other – with eating out likely to come out on top.

So this Fathers Day, instead of buying something fancy or stopping off at the nearest Coles to buy Dad a box of chocolates perhaps we should all think back to our childhood memories of Fathers Day when money wasn’t easy to come buy- cook him breakfast, bring him in the newspaper, make dad a special card or simply just tell him you love him and that he’s the best Dad in the world!

Happy Fathers Day!