Nova Scotians will get a provincial holiday on the third Monday in February starting next year.
Nova Scotia Heritage Day will recognize a different aspect of the province's past each year.
In 2015, the holiday will honour Viola Desmond, who was jailed and fined in 1946 for sitting in the white section of a movie theatre in New Glasgow and refusing to move. In 2010, she was given a posthumous pardon from the provincial government.
Students named the new holiday, which Labour and Advanced Education Minister Kelly Regan said gave them "a great opportunity to learn more about the people and events that helped shape our province."
Nova Scotia joins other provinces in declaring a holiday on the third Monday in February. It's Louis Riel Day in Manitoba, Islander Day in Prince Edward Island, and Family Day in Alberta, Ontario and Saskatchewan. British Columbia marks Family Day on the second Monday in February.