International Raccoon Appreciation Day is Oct. 1 and was the brainchild of a young girl in California, says the National Wildlife Federation, in an effort to bring awareness to the benefits the little rascals have to the ecosystem.

They aren't just a nuisance, pests or the clowns that we all know raccoons to be; they provide a multitude of benefits, according to Behance.

Besides being the most easily recognized mammal in North America, says the Newport Bay Conservancy, raccoons play an important and vital part in our ecosystems by maintaining healthy populations and also by gathering and distributing seeds during their foraging. So, they're kind of like Mother Nature's sidekick. 

With its varied diet, raccoons are known to eat almost anything: grubs, snails, worms, frogs, turtles, shellfish, rabbit, waterfowl, eggs, nesting birds, fruits, vegetables, compost, berries and nuts.  

Water is a must for these little scamps - they love to wash their faces, keeping fastidiously clean - but also enjoy washing their food, as you can see in the video here. Our favorite is number three, but you can be the judge of your favorite raccoon moment in the compilation. Enjoy!

So while we celebrate these comical masked bandits, for the good they do it's also time to celebrate their total entertainment value with how they handle situations and things they encounter.