If you wish to pay your respects to those who gave their lives in service this Memorial Day, remember to “display noble discipline” when visiting gravesites, says the Deseret News. Don’t allow children to run or play on markers, and leave the pets at home unless the pet has special significance to the deceased. Don’t play loud music, and phone ahead if you would like to include a quiet picnic as part of your observance or check any rules about what decorations can and can’t be displayed. “It can be a fine line between reverence and revelry,” the story says.
Since 1988, Vietnam veterans who are also motorcycle enthusiasts have staged a Rolling Thunder rally in Washington, D.C., to call attention to the many POW/MIAs who are still unaccounted for from the conflict. Thousands of bikers now participate in the “Ride for Freedom” every year; beginning tomorrow, this year’s Rolling Thunder XXXII will be a three-day event that features a 185-mile ride from central New Jersey, a candlelight vigil, a barbeque, a wreath presentation, guest speakers, a musical tribute and more.
Memorial Day parades have become a grand tradition in towns and cities throughout the country, with local veterans’ organizations and active military often participating. To see one of the biggest, visit the nation’s capital, says Punchbowl; the event regularly attracts more than a quarter-million people and features marching bands, floats and hundreds of veterans who served in conflicts from World War II to the present. New York and Chicago also host huge events every year, as do Littleneck-Douglaston, N.Y., and Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military, Memorial Day was originally known as Decoration Day when it originated in the years immediately after the Civil War, according to History.com. Waterloo, N.Y., held the first communitywide remembrance on May 5, 1866, decorating soldiers’ graves with flowers and flags. Two years later, Gen. John A. Logan declared a nationwide day of remembrance to be held on May 30. Memorial Day didn’t become a uniform federal holiday until 1971, however, with a floating date to ensure a three-day weekend at the start of summer.
Everyone loves a cookout, but not everyone knows their way around a grill. For the best results, follow a few simple pro tips. If using charcoal, skip the lighter fluid and instead start your coals using a chimney, Country Living says. Keep the grill lid down whenever possible to seal in heat and moisture, and create zones of high and medium heat on the grill surface. Try a dry rub or marinade on meats, and start with a clean, greased grate. And finally, don’t poke meat constantly to check for doneness; either invest in a digital thermometer or take the meat off the heat early — you can always put it back on if it’s still too rare.