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May Day

Celebrate May Day with friends and family - brighten someone's day with a bouquet of flowers or a kind gesture to show you care!
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When it is?
May 1
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Category
Federal
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Country
United States
Creator
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Founded
Introduction

Get ready to celebrate May Day on May 1! This day has been around for centuries as a celebration of springtime and the start of warmer weather. It was traditionally celebrated with dancing, singing, feasting, and maypole decorations. People often give their friends or loved ones small gifts like flowers or candy to show appreciation for one another. It's also a great opportunity to get outside and enjoy nature in all its glory - from blooming flowers to chirping birds!

History of May Day

May Day Dates

May Day Timeline

<div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>600s</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>May Day's Early Beginnings</div><div class='timeline-text'>Originating from the pagan festival of Beltane, May Day marked the midpoint between spring equinox and summer solstice in Celtic traditions.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1640s</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Puritans Ban May Day</div><div class='timeline-text'>During the rule of the Puritan leaders in England, May Day celebrations were deemed immoral and suppressed for a time.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1660</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Restoration of May Day</div><div class='timeline-text'>After the Restoration of the monarchy in England, May Day celebrations were revived and regained popularity.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1886</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Labor Movement Recognition</div><div class='timeline-text'>The first of May, also referred to as International Workers' Day or Labor Day in many countries, is officially recognized by the labor movement, linking May Day to workers' rights and commemorating the Haymarket affair in Chicago.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1920s</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>May Day Declines in US</div><div class='timeline-text'>With the rise of communism, associations between May Day and socialism led to a decline in traditional May Day celebrations in the United States.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>Current Era</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Modern May Day Celebrations</div><div class='timeline-text'>Today, many people continue to celebrate May Day with traditional activities like dancing around the maypole, while others use the day to demonstrate for workers' rights, showing this ancient festival's adaptability and enduring significance.</div></div></div>

How to Celebrate May Day

<div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>1</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Organize a parade</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Put together a parade with all sorts of fun activities like a marching band, costumes and floats. Invite family and friends to join in the festivities.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>2</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Decorate your home</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Get into the spirit by decorating your home with bright colors, ribbons and flowers. Hang up garlands and put up signs telling visitors it is May Day.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>3</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Gift baskets</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Fill gift baskets with treats like cookies, candy, coffee and tea for your loved ones and drop them off at their doorstep as a surprise.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>4</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Dance around the maypole</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Gather friends and family to dance around the maypole. Play some music, sing some songs, or just be silly!</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>5</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Fly a kite</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Make kites out of paper or bring out your store bought ones and take time to fly them outdoors on this special day.</p></div></div>

Why We Love May Day

<div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>A</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>It marks the start of summer</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>May Day is a chance to celebrate the end of spring and the beginning of summer. It's an opportunity to get outside and enjoy the sunshine, fresh air, and all that nature has to offer!</p></div></div><div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>B</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>It celebrates change</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>May 1st is traditionally known as a day of renewal and rebirth, a time for making changes in our lives and reflecting on our progress. It can be a powerful reminder to set meaningful goals and take action towards achieving them.</p></div></div><div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>C</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>It honors traditions</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>May Day has been celebrated in some form or another for centuries, with different cultures utilizing unique means of observing the special day. From proclaiming May Queen's to dancing around maypole's, we can appreciate the rich history of this beloved holiday!</p></div></div>

5 Intriguing Facts About Celebrating May Day

<div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>1</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>The Tradition of Leaving a May Day Basket</h3><p class='facts-content'>One of the long-standing traditions of May Day is the leaving of a May basket on someone's doorstep. The basket is usually filled with flowers or treats and is a kind gesture to spread joy and appreciation.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>2</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Maypole Dancing Traces Its Roots back to Germanic Pagan Traditions</h3><p class='facts-content'>The maypole dancing that is commonly associated with May Day celebrations originated in Germanic pagan celebrations. It symbolizes the tree used as a central decorative theme during festivities welcoming summer.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>3</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>May Day Garland Ceremonies Honour Sea Creatures in England'</h3><p class='facts-content'>In the English coastal town of Hastings, May Day is celebrated with traditional Jack-in-the-Green parades and garland ceremonies to honor the fish of the sea.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>4</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>The Hawaiian Recognition of May Day as Lei Day</h3><p class='facts-content'>In Hawaii, May 1st is recognized as Lei Day, a day to celebrate Hawaiian culture. The locals wear and exchange leis, flowers strung together to create a necklace, symbolic of the Aloha spirit.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>5</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Walpurgis Night Marks the Eve of May Day in Several European Countries</h3><p class='facts-content'>The eve of May Day or April 30th is celebrated as Walpurgis Night in northern European countries like Sweden, Germany, Estonia, and Finland. This eve is marked with various customs to ward off evil spirits and witches, and warmly welcome the spring season.</p></div></div>

May Day FAQs

When is May Day?

May Day is celebrated on May 1 every year. In 2024 May Day will occur on a Wednesday.

May Day Dates

Year
Date
Day

2023

May 1

Monday

2024

May 1

Wednesday

2025

May 1

Thursday

2026

May 1

Friday

2027

May 1

Saturday

Federal Holidays