MAY DAY

MAY DAY

May Day is observed annually on May 1.  In many ancient calendars, May 1 was the first day of summer.  This was a cause for celebration.  One of the more popular rituals was harvesting flowers and giving them to neighbors and strangers in cone-shaped baskets. These “May Baskets” become more commonly known as “May Day Baskets”. 

The current tradition is observed by hanging a cone-shaped basket full of flowers or other gifts on the outside doorknob, then knocking or ringing the doorbell and run away. May Day has been a traditional day of celebration for centuries, with some of the earliest appearing in pre-Christian times.  In English tradition, May Day is celebrated by crowning a May Queen and dancing around a maypole.  

The Finnish tradition is a carnival-type celebration in the streets that includes a special type of lemonade that is made with lemons, brown sugar and yeast.  In France, it is correct to give people either dogwood or lily of the valley to celebrate May Day.  In Italy, a seasonal feast is held to celebrate the arrival of spring. While different countries have different ways to celebrate May Day, it is truly a celebration of spring. 

HOW TO OBSERVE Use #MayDay when posting on Social Media.  Participate in the May Day tradition of hanging baskets of flowers on doors. 

HISTORY There are over 1,500 national days. Don’t miss a single one. 

D. K. Smith

D. K. Smith

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