Labor Day was first celebrated in New York City in 1882 when 10,000 workers took unpaid time off to march from City Hall to Union Square. This event spurred others around the country, however, Labor Day didn’t become a federal holiday until 1894. During the Pullman Strike, US Marshalls killed 13 people participating in the protest. President Cleveland promised to reconcile with the labor movement and unions to ensure that workers experienced improved conditions, fair wages, and appropriate hours. Thus, Labor Day was born.
Now, we are afforded the opportunity to celebrate a day off work with parades, fireworks, and picnics in the great outdoors. This year, host a Labor Day cook out for your loved ones in celebration of our ancestors’ resilience and determination. Here are a few tips:
Pick a Theme
To ramp up the holiday spirit, choose a fun theme and ask guests to accessorize accordingly. For example, ask everyone to dress patriotically, or dress as their favorite film character. People are bound to have some good laughs and great conversation over their costumes.
Additionally, this gives you a way to decorate your tables, signage, and lawn. A few balloons, tablecloths, and streamers will really spice up the vibe. Hang battery operated string lights to keep the festivities going into the evening.
Set up DIY Lawn Games
Give your guests a few activities to enjoy while the party gets going. This gives folks an easy way to meet new people and mingle over a shared activity. From life-size Yahtzee! to backyard dominoes, there are plenty of simple yard games that only take a few hours to make. Craft these ahead of time and set them up at various places around the cookout.
BYOB Side Dishes
As the host, you’re sure to have your hands full at the grill, so be sure to ask guests to bring their favorite Labor Day party side dish. Create a spread sheet and share with partygoers to ensure that there are no repeats. Set up a table and cooler beforehand where side dishes, snacks, and desserts can be placed. Be sure to provide little cards so guests can identify their dish. Go one step further and offer recipe cards so fans of a certain dish can take home a new recipe for next year.
Plan One Group Activity
To bring your crew together, plan to have one group activity like kickball, a 3-legged race, or even charades. While guests may initially feel a little silly, it’s a fantastic way to break the ice and have everyone lighten up. Labor Day is meant to be fun and enjoyable, so turn up the excitement with a little friendly competition!
At Independence, we cherish our close-knit, family-oriented community, which is why we’ve designed a neighborhood that has ample outdoor gathering spaces and miles of trails. We’re more than just new homes in Elizabeth, Colorado. We’re a place to grow your social circle, invest in one another, and be stewards of this land we call home. Contact us today to learn more.