2020 Memorial Day Weekend: Ideas and Activities

Memorial Day is traditionally a holiday of remembrance and coming together. The weekend also marks an opening to warmer temperatures and summer time for students and families. While COVID-19 has affected the typical social events that would happen this weekend, there are still ways to enjoy this weekend and honor the people who have died while serving the U.S.

Honoring Fallen Soldiers

VA National Cemeteries will not be holding memorial services open to the general public to protect people. Visitors will still be allowed to place flowers and American flags at veteran gravesites throughout the weekend, but are being asked to consider visiting on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday to avoid possible crowds on Memorial Day itself. These cemeteries are also requesting that visitors still follow safe, physical distancing practices and mandates for being out in public.

As an alternative, you could consider sending a donation to the Maine Veterans Home in Scarborough, which was sadly hit by several cases of Covid-19 in April/May. In addition, you can also donate to the Southern Maine Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery Association. Donations go towards the beautification of the cemetery and are a great way to remember soldiers while staying safe.

Other national events that would normally occur will be having televised versions that can be enjoyed safely at home. The National Memorial Day Parade has been replaced with a televised event, The National Memorial Day Parade: America Stand Tall, occurring on May 25th at 2:00. The National Memorial Day Concert is planning to be broadcast on PBS, May 24th at 8:00 P.M. (EST).

Going Outdoors

With Friday temperatures predicted to finally peak above 70 degrees and the whole weekend looking to be partly cloudy to sunny, people are going to be looking to be outside and enjoy the weather. When going out in public, remember 6ft physical distancing and wearing masks while avoiding gatherings of 10 or more people. The Maine.Gov website provides more in-depth guidelines to keep in mind when going out.

Trails are open for walking and you can check out some of the many trails in Scarborough on the town website. Maine Public Land Beaches are also open for people walking, but keep in mind that people are still not allowed to lounge. Beaches and walking trails are expected to by very popular this weekend, which can complicate maintaining social distancing. Getting out early is probably the best way to beat the crowds! Remote camping is permissible but once again, people being urged to stay cautious and prepare appropriately since not all the typical services and public buildings may not be available. Consider back-yard camping described below as an alternative.

Boating and kayaking are another popular warmer weather activity that can be conducive to social distancing. However, the water is still very cold so this is probably best left to the very experienced. It can be life threatening very quickly to fall in to water at the current temperatures. Bringing some extra layers would be wise despite the heat because the cold water might make for some cold breezes.

Drive-In Theaters will also be open during this time, which is a great way to enjoy the semi-outdoors while keeping physical distancing. Near Scarborough, the Saco Drive-In will open on Friday, May 22nd and Pride’s Corner Drive-In in Westbrook already opened this past weekend. Slightly further north, the Bridgeton Twin Drive-In also opened last weekend.

Staying At Home

You can always plan some at-home activities to enjoy! With a little research and creativity, there is plenty of things to do from home to keep safe but have fun! Backyard camping is a fun family activity that gives you all the conveniences of having your home only a few steps away while still being outdoors. Plus, cookouts and picnics are still great ways for your household to enjoy the warmer weather while physical distancing with your family. It’s probably a good idea to get your propane/charcoal and other grill supplies during the week instead of waiting until the weekend.

You can support local restaurants by ordering curbside pick-up or delivery over the weekend, but keep in mind that many people will be taking advantage of these services during the holiday, so plan ahead and be patient!

This weekend is also a common time to start home-improvement/summer projects. Home-improvement stores are also offering delivery and curbside pick-up to make ordering supplies for projects even more convenient. It takes a few days generally to get the curbside orders filled at bigger stores so plan ahead and get your order in now. With the predicted last days of frost having past for the Southern Maine region, this is a great time to sow seeds directly in the garden or planting sprouts that have been started indoors.

Memorial Day is a reminder to take the time honor those who have fallen, which is ever more important as we face this crisis. As we put winter behind us to embrace the warmer weather, we recognize that the sacrifices of those who gave for this country and continue to give. We hope that everyone has a safe and fulfilling Memorial Day weekend!

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My brother Jack and I co-own The Real Estate Store. I grew up and live in Scarborough, ME. I became a real estate broker in 2005, but Real Estate is a family business for us. We are second generation Real Estate Brokers. My experience working with apartments and with residential construction has given me insight into cost-aware construction and green construction and design.

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