Plan a perfect Memorial Day celebration & summer cookout

Have a retro-style Memorial day celebration

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A traditional Memorial Day celebration is a mix of somber remembrance, family togetherness & fun

Although Memorial Day was not officially declared a federal holiday until 1971, Americans have been commemorating those who died in their country’s defense ever since the end of the Civil War — as early as 1866.

Traditionally, Memorial Day was — and continues to be — recognized with everything from quiet graveside visits to community parades, speeches and fireworks displays, as well as holiday picnics or BBQs.

Beginning-of-summer vibes

Since Memorial Day always falls on the last Monday of May in the US, it’s a three-day weekend for many people and has also come to represent the first unofficial day of the summer season, when families and friends get together for pool parties, cookouts and lawn games.

We’ve gathered up some Memorial Day Americana — including histories of the holiday and those who have served, as well as vintage greeting cards and a super-traditional summer cookout menu — to help you plan the perfect Memorial Day celebration!

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