Why do we have leap years?

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Real Estate

I was recently talking to someone about Leap Year and had to admit, other than an extra day every four years, I really don’t know why we have them. When leap year is mentioned, I think of comical frogs and lily pads, and I find myself wondering – “is it a Hallmark holiday?” I decided to look a bit further and find out what leap year is all about.

What I learned is that our calendar year drifts over time and doesn’t stay synchronized with the solar year or seasonal year. An extra day is added to correct the drift, so after three common years a day is added to the fourth year to create a Leap Year. Leap Years occur in any year that can be exactly divided by 4 (think 2016, 2020, 2024, etc). The day is added to February since it has the shortest number of days. So, there you have it, the scientific explanation for Leap Year. However, based on the large amount of gummy frogs I’m seeing in stores, maybe it’s just another day to have fun!