May Day Tradition To Bring Back!

May 1st is May Day! It’s still marked on calendars everywhere in United States but why? I never see anyone actually celebrate it anymore. Do you?

May Day originated in Europe and like most celebrations/festivals it has been changed and tweaked. Now unfortunately the festivals to celebrate the change of weather and budding of tulips have almost faded away completely. In the 1800’s and early 1900’s it was a time of good food and great festivals. Dressing up and dancing around the Maypole with bright beautiful colors is a thing of the past.

Another big part of May Day was young boys and girls leaving flowers at the door of who they had a crush on. The challenge was to do it without getting caught! Later years it became just a nice surprise for your neighbor or friend. Some of us have still kept this tradition going.

I remember every year hand making a paper basket with my Mom, picking flowers in the yard and sneaking over to the neighbors to hang on their door. My Mom spending time with me to make little baskets and the excitement I had with surprising the neighbors is something I will never forget.

Perhaps another reason we have forgotten about this old tradition is that on May 1st, 1886 it became International Workers’ Day. The Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions (later to become American Federation of Labor) proclaimed that eight hours shall constitute a legal days labor. Before this thousands of men and women were dying every year from poor working conditions and long hours.

Now as I sit here I think about all of our essential workers that put their life on the line for us everyday since the shut down. Without them our country would surly be devastated! Could you image if you got sick/hurt and our emergency care was shut down? Hospitals just closed! Could you image if the stores where we get our food was just empty?

I personally thank every single one of them and I challenge everyone reading this to bring back May Day!

I have been making little paper cones and this Friday I will be putting flowers in them for my gratitude. I will be placing them wherever I find an essential worker’s car or at there door. Please join me in spreading gratitude to them on May 1st.


Rita Jane

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