Family-friendly Memorial Day weekend events

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Memorial Day weekend is coming up in a few days. Ah, three days off! Of course, there is more meaning behind the holiday than just an extra day away from work or school. It began as a number of regionally-organized remembrances of Civil War dead in both the North and South, but eventually coalesced into a single day to remember those who sacrificed their lives in all wars. A 1968 Act of Congress made the holiday the final Monday in May. A number of civil war re-enactments also take place during the weekend.

Besides honoring the fallen, the day is traditionally seen as the unofficial start of summer, and is marked with parades, a celebratory atmosphere, and plenty of barbecued meat.

It's also a time for families to get together, re-unite, and do something together. So in case you don't already have enough to do, what with barbecuing and parades, be sure to check out some events that are happening during the weekend. We chose some family-friendly events that everybody can enjoy together!


The annual Indianapolis 500 will take place this weekend. This event is a Memorial Day weekend classic, taking place on or near the holiday since the first one was held in 1911. Additionally, a number of MLB games will play this weekend, including San Diego at the Mets, Detroit at Minnesota, St. Louis at Atlanta, Washington at Miami, and Yankees at Angels.

Finally, the NBA and NHL regional playoffs are in their final stretches, and depending on how things play out this week, they may have games this weekend. The potential match-ups for the NBA include game sevens for the Pacers/Heat and 76ers and Celtics on Saturday, and Lakers/Thunder on Sunday. The NHL match-ups are game sevens for the Coyotes/Kings on Saturday and Rangers/Devils on the 27th.


The theater scene is also pretty full. Sesame Street Live is a great option for families with younger children, and three of its most popular shows—Elmo's Super Heroes, Elmo Makes Music, and 123 Imagine—all have shows this weekend in Thousand Oaks, NC, and Greensboro, NC. Besides Sesame Street, Cirque du Soleil has performances running for ten shows in six states. Finally, Wicked, the popular music about the lives of the Wicked Witch of the West and Good Witch of the North Glinda, has performances in North Carolina and on Broadway.


There is also plenty going on in concerts, with a number of music festivals running, including Rocklahoma in Pryor, OK, and the Bayou Country Superfest in Baton Rouge, LA. If something a little more classical is your family's style, the Los Angeles Philhamonic will be playing the works of Tchaikovsky and Sibelius on the 25th, the opera Don Giovanni on the 26th, and Mozart on the 27th. Also, the San Antonio Symphony Orchestra will perform the music of Copland on the 25 and 26th.

Finally, if you're looking to laugh a bit and are in the DC area, The Capitol Steps is a great show. Despite its location, the show is non-partisan and has a lot of in-jokes in store for the political geeks out there.