This weekend the USA will commemorate Memorial Day. Yes, it’s a day that many of us view as the official beginning of summer, marked by picnics, BBQs, and relaxing with friends and family. But Memorial Day is a very important holiday established to give us a time to honor and remember the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military.
In addition to picnics and BBQs, here are five great ideas for things we can do around our homes and towns to celebrate Memorial Day this weekend.
Attend A Parade. Many towns have parades on Memorial Day and some events even conclude with a memorial service. Take some time from prepping for BBQs or relaxing with friends and family to take advantage of what your town has to offer on this important day.
- Decorate with Flags. Break out the red, white and blue! For many years, it has been a tradition to decorate graves of fallen soldiers with flags on Memorial Day. Bring that tradition home and decorate your house and lawn with the stars and stripes! Another tradition is to fly the flag at half-staff from dawn until noon local time. If you have a flag pole, consider joining the tradition this year.
- Thank A Veteran. While Memorial Day is a time for remembering and honoring our fallen soldiers, it’s also a wonderful time to thank soldiers past and present who are right here in our midst today. Thank them for all they have done to protect our country and our freedoms. Many of our inspectors are veterans – thank you for your service. Don’t know a veteran or want to do more? Write a letter to a veteran or soldier! Check out OperationGratitude.com for more information about writing letters or sending care packages to soldiers currently deployed.
- Participate in our National Moment of Remembrance. In an effort to ensure Memorial Day is the sacred and noble holiday it is intended to be, the National Moment of Remembrance asks all of us to pause for 1 minute in an act of national unity wherever we are at 3 PM local time on Memorial Day. 3 PM is the time when most of use are enjoying our freedoms on the national holiday.
- Buy A Poppy. During the days leading up to Memorial Day, members of the VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) accept donations for poppies. The poppy’s significance to Memorial Day derives from John McCrae’s poem, “In Flanders Fields.” Disabled and needy veterans in VA hospitals have been assembling Buddy Poppies since 1924. Purchase a poppy and your donation assists in maintaining state and national rehabilitation and service programs for veterans.