As the last weekend of May approaches, we prepare to celebrate Memorial Day which is observed on the last Monday in May. Memorial Day was created in honor to remember those who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. It marks the start of summer and the kickoff to many outdoor activities for families and friends to enjoy together.
On Memorial Day weekend, cities across the country pause to remember those whose lives were lost, estimated to be up over 6 million people. This number is an accumulation resulting from the numerous battles dating back to the Civil War.
Although a somber memory, Memorial Day weekend is notorious for positive high points which have become great traditions over the years with events throughout the weekend. Here are just a few of the well-known activities that go on during Memorial Day weekend. Which of these weekend traditions do you look forward to the most?
1. Store Sales – Memorial Day weekend has become a staple weekend for many retailers to host one of their largest sales of the year. If you have experienced a Labor Day or Black Friday sale, you most likely have been on the hunt for some of the greatest Memorial Day sales at your local retailers. Typically, the discounts tend to be a great saving on big-ticket items like mattresses and home appliances, but there are plenty of other opportunities to save on things you need and want around the home like clothing, electronics and beauty supplies.
2. Backyard BBQs – Hamburgers, hot dogs and all things patriotic are traditionally served on Memorial Day during BBQs with families and friends. Being a federal holiday, a majority of companies are closed and give their team the day off from work. This allows people an extra day to spend poolside, soaking up the sun’s rays and cooking up some delicious favorites on the BBQ. You may notice the party decoration theme is that of red, white and blue, the colors of our nation’s flag. Many BBQ goers enjoy cooking up a festive dessert or appetizer platter that boasts the red, white and blue colors.
3. Neighborhood Ceremonies and Parades – National Cemetery Administration host Memorial Day ceremonies at VA national cemeteries and local communities host parades across the country. Generally, a Veteran will be a guest speaker at the ceremony and speak to those being honored as well as veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Also, recognized are the surviving veterans’ families, prisoners of war and those missing in action.
For an interesting look at the numbers of soldiers who have died by war, check out this website. May we never forget these fallen soldiers.