What is May Day and Why?

May Day welcomes the change of season. Beginning with the Romans who celebrated The Festival of Flora, the goddess of flowers, it was a late April through early May event.

Today it is essentially a European and Asian public holiday celebrated with dance, singing, sweets, and gifts. Here are some of the traditions associated with the holiday across the pond.

Dancing.. In Pagan days people commemorated this holiday by dancing around a May Pole. This symbolized the union of masculine and feminine.

Singing.. National songs and songs of solidarity are sung on this day. In the United States our May Day started as a workers movement on May 1, 1886, where 300,000 workers walked off their jobs to demand better working conditions. Many countries celebrate in this way and also have military parades.

However, May Day is mainly a time for singing traditional country songs celebrating country and the change of season.

Sweets.. It is a day for cakes and other sweets. Here’s an an idea from one of America’s favorite bakers, Sandra Lee.

Gifts.. May Baskets filled with candy, flowers, or small gifts are placed on neighbor’s front door as a surprise. What a nice gesture.

I like this holiday.

Don’t you?