All across America, families are gearing up for Memorial Day weekend celebrations. Whether you intend on visiting friends, traveling to national memorial sites, or just getting outside to enjoy the beautiful spring weather, Memorial Day is a perfect opportunity to celebrate. With summer just around the corner, you won’t want to miss your chance to gather your loved ones and friends together for some holiday weekend fun.
In 1971, Congress declared the last Monday in May as Memorial Day and made it a national holiday. The purpose of this holiday is to honor all Americans who have died in wars over our nation’s history.
The National Monument of Remembrance encourages all Americans to stop what they are doing at 3pm (local time) on Memorial Day and observe a moment of silence to remember those who have died in service for our nation.
The Birthplace & History of Memorial Day
President Lyndon Johnson declared Memorial Day’s birthplace as Waterloo, NY in 1966: 100 years prior on May 5th, a ceremony had taken place in order to honor local veterans who had fought in the Civil War.
To this day, many other cities throughout the nation claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day, but Waterloo is the only city that has gained the official declaration.
In 1868, three years after the end of the Civil War, the Grand Army of the Republic declared May 5th as Decoration Day for the purpose of encouraging the nation to decorate the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers.
Later, Major General John Logan moved the holiday to May 30th, as it was assumed that flowers would be blooming all over the nation at that time.
Events Across the Country
There are countless events occurring across our great nation this coming Memorial Day weekend. Here we’ve compiled a list of some of the most popular and unique events we could find.
- New York City Street Fairs
- Denver’s Memorial Day Veterans Parade and Tribute
- Downtown Chicago’s Honorary Memorial Day Parade
- FREE Atlanta Jazz Festival
- Minnesota’s Nisswa Memorial Day Remembrance Event
- Virginia’s Memorial Day Parade & Festival
- Maryland Memorial Day Weekend State-Wide Celebrations
If you can’t find the kind of event you’re looking for, why not plan your own event? It could be as simple as a BBQ, or as big as a block party. No matter how you celebrate, just make sure you get out there this Memorial Day weekend and enjoy yourself!