Home for Memorial Day - Geneva College, a Christian College in Pennsylvania (PA)

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Everyday Living
May 23, 2020

Home for Memorial Day

Home for the holidays typically refers to Christmas and New Year’s, but being the month of May, this isn’t the case. All over the United States, people are still quarantined during the month of May. That being said, even though many things are put on hold, Memorial Day is still scheduled to happen on May 25. Many people celebrate this day by attending a parade, visiting family and friends, or going to see fireworks. Unfortunately, due to quarantine rules, these events will most likely not be able to happen and the normal events of Memorial Day will be changed a bit. So, what is there to do while your home for the holiday? To help you out, here is a list of what you can do right at home to mark Memorial Day.

1. Picnic Time!

On a normal Memorial Day, people everywhere would be enjoying a nice picnic at a park or at family or friend’s houses. However, in some areas, people are still not allowed to go to park facilities and family and friend’s houses may still be off limits. The good news is, you can have a picnic anywhere. The great thing about having a picnic at home is that you already have all the ingredients you need for it right in your house. No need to pack all the food in a tiny little lunch cooler. All you need to do is throw some hot dogs on the grill, grab the watermelon and be ready to eat the easiest Memorial Day picnic ever!

2. DYI Fireworks and Sparklers at Home

With firework shows attracting large crowds, this item is off the menu for things to do on Memorial Day this year. Although this is a disappointment, who said that fireworks at home isn’t a possibility? Fortunately, fireworks are still being sold in stores right now, allowing people to celebrate their Memorial Day with their own firework show. Not enough space in your yard for fireworks? Well, all you need to do is grab a pack of sparklers or a box of bang snaps and let the fun begin in a responsible way.

3. Sit around a Campfire

Although this may not be a traditional Memorial Day event, campfires can be a fun family activity. It’s not only enjoyable to sit around but it can serve as a good place to enjoy good conversations, have some laughs, and play some fun campfire games. If you get a little hungry, all you have to do is roast and toast a few hotdogs or marshmallows over the fire! So grab some firewood, some matches, and the whole family and start that Memorial Day campfire.

4. Take a Fishing Trip

With social distancing as a current issue, fishing is not the first activity people think to participate in. However, with fishing as one of the few sports that doesn’t require physical contact with people, it remains as a good activity for Memorial Day. Different rules may apply in the various states, but typically if people sit six feet apart from each other, they are free to start reeling in those fish. So, why not pack up the fishing gear and head out to go catch some fresh fish? Who knows, maybe fishing will become you and your family’s new favorite Memorial Day activity.

5. What about parades?!

A parade is one event that every American has come to know and love during these patriotic holidays. During parades, kids get to see some cool cars, trucks, and floats, hear some fun band music and collect a bag full of candy. Unfortunately, most counties have already canceled their Memorial Day parades, leaving many Americans with a big gap in their schedule of festivities for the weekend. Now, a parade is a difficult thing to replace but there are other fun things to do instead. For example, something that the whole family could enjoy is an old-fashioned drive-in movie theater. With theaters beings shut down and with a six-foot separation needed between people, drive-ins have been seeing a comeback. If you’re still looking for another parade substitute, going on a bike ride, walk or drive to get some ice cream may prove to be just as fun. Even though it isn’t the same as sitting on the curb collecting your fill of candy, I’m sure the family won’t complain when ice-cream is concerned.

6. Don’t forget to say thank you!

Amongst all the fireworks, parades, picnics and fun we can’t forget the reason for Memorial Day! This day is celebrated to remember the many sacrifices that brave men and women all over the United States have made for our country. That being said, it is important that we make sure we express our gratitude to our soldiers and their families on this day of remembrance. Now, obviously shaking hands, giving big hugs and saying thank you in person is prohibited during this time. However, who said cards were not an option? If you know a family member or friend who has served, sending a thank you card is a great way to show your appreciation for what they have done. Memorial Day is also a day that we remember those that have lost their lives in service for our country. While those that have died cannot be thanked now, you can send a card to a Gold Star Family. By doing this, you would be expressing thanks and condolences to a family that has experienced the tragic loss of a loved one who has died in service. Memorial Day is a day that we can enjoy the holiday festivities while also spending time with loved ones. But it is important to remember the reason we are celebrating this day.

7. Continual Prayer

Out of all of the activities that we enjoy on this day of fun, relaxation and remembrance, prayer is probably missed the most. While prayer is so quickly forgotten, the importance of it is unfortunately forgotten right along with it. The truth is, we all need to pray! The Bible states that prayer is not only important in one’s personal life, but it is also important in the lives of others around them. In 1 Timothy 2:1-2  it says, “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” We need to be praying for comfort for those who are grieving the loss of their loved ones. We need to be praying for the safety of those who are actively in the service. We need to offer prayers of thanksgiving for the freedom we are able to experience because of those sacrifices many have made. We need to be praying for the leaders of our country, asking fervently that God will guide and direct their steps. On this day of sacrificial remembrance, we need to also remember to be in prayer for our soldiers, leaders and nation.

Quarantined during Memorial Day unfortunately does prevent quite a few normal holiday actives from happening. But that doesn’t mean that fun has to be obliterated from the day. Besides for this list of substitutions, there are many other things that people can do to have a relaxing and enjoyable holiday. Memorial Day is a set day to remember the sacrifices many people have made for the sake of our country. Whether out at a parade, sitting before fireworks, or simply at home for Memorial Day, this day will still happen and the people who have sacrificed much will still be remembered.

-Abigail Forton ‘22