What is May Day?
May Day has roots in pagan Anglo-Saxon customs and the pagan festival Beltane, which marks the beginning of summer.
Typically, on May Day villages and towns across the UK now mark the beginning of springtime fertility.
This would usually be celebrated with large gatherings of communities, villages holding fetes and other fun activities. The May Queen is also crowned on May Day, and often sees local schoolgirls compete for the crown in honour of Flora, the Roman goddess.
But where does maypole dancing come into all this?
Maypole dancing is another tradition celebrated on May Day, and is seen as a way of saying farewell to winter. Even though summer does not begin until June, May Day is a celebration of things coming to life.
May Day also falls on the same day as International Workers’ Day, launched in the late 19th century with protests for an eight hour working day.
When is May Day?
May Day falls on May 1 this year.
Decorating your event for May Day 2018?
Here are some photo ideas to help you with your May Day Celebrations.
May Day Hot Air Balloon Baskets.
Bright Coloured Balloon Release in your village.
Bright Coloured Confetti Filled latex Balloons – at Balloons Galore We also personalise this product!!
Will you be Maypole Dancing this year? here is a guide on how to Dance the Maypole!!
- Put the Maypole together. Unless you have access to a Maypole that has already been made for the purpose, you will need to make your own. Find a tall pole and attach ribbons or strong streamers at the top of the pole. These ribbons will need to be an even number, the same number of ribbons as there are dancers.
- Divide the dancers into two groups. For example, you might have them count off one, two, one, two, one, two around the circle, or A, B, A, B, etc. The A’s can go clockwise and the B’s go counterclockwise. The dancers go alternately right and left of the dancers going in the opposite direction.
Develop a pattern. The pattern the dancers should keep in mind is over, under, over, under, over, under etc.
- On the count of “over”, the dancer raises his ribbon slightly so the dancer coming in the opposite direction can duck under his ribbon.
- On the count of “under” the dancer ducks under the ribbon of the dancer coming in the opposite direction.
We hope you enjoy your Bank Holiday and May Day Celebrations…