This coming holiday, homeowners associations everywhere are gearing up to throw fun Memorial Day weekend activities for residents. These activities help spread the feeling of patriotism and community, strengthening the bond that residents share. And while you can certainly get creative, there are some classic Memorial Day activities that achieve this goal every time.
Top Memorial Day Weekend Activities for Your HOA
Homeowners associations are known for many things — from strict architectural standards to monthly fees. But, living in an HOA also comes with fun activities. Many associations organize social events designed to instill a sense of community among residents. While some events don’t need a reason, most of them do revolve around a specific holiday.
With Memorial Day just around the corner, HOA boards and social committees would be wise to make preparations now. Whether you’re on a budget or pressed for time, there’s an activity for your every need. Here are the best Memorial Day weekend activities to plan for your community.
1. Memorial Day Parade
The National Memorial Day Parade is an American tradition. Every year, crowds flock to Constitution Avenue in Washington, DC, to watch veteran units and marching bands proudly salute the fallen heroes of the country.
It’s not always possible to make the trip all the way to DC, though. As such, your HOA can organize a live-watching event at a common area or facility. You can set up a big screen in your community clubhouse or an outdoor space. Most major networks broadcast the parade live or you can stream it online through the American Veterans Center’s YouTube and Facebook pages.
If you want to take things to the next level, why not organize your own community parade? Ask residents to decorate bikes, wagons, and other small vehicles to match the Memorial Day theme. Then, everyone can march down a planned trail as other residents wave. Don’t forget to play some patriotic music to really drive the atmosphere!
2. Memorial Day Service
Memorial Day is about commemorating the brave military men and women who gave their lives in defense of our nation. Thus, it makes sense to give them a fitting salute by organizing a Memorial Day service.
Make sure your HOA partners with a local veterans’ group for an authentic experience. You can begin the event with a flag-raising ceremony and then have veterans share their experiences with the residents. This is a good way for residents to gain some perspective and a deeper appreciation for the contributions of veterans to the country.
3. Memorial Walk or Run
Many local governments and organizations hold Memorial Day runs or walks in honor of the fallen veterans. Your HOA can encourage residents to sign up for one. If possible, you can even organize one for your community.
Make sure to plan out the path for the walk or run. This works best if you have a larger neighborhood with streets that you can close off for the event. Plan ahead of time, though, to maximize your attendance rate. Don’t forget to enact safety protocols and install water stations throughout the trail.
4. HOA Pool Party
If you’re looking for fun things to do on Memorial Day weekend, you can’t really go wrong with a pool party. Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of the summer. Most schools are out for summer break. As such, planning a community-wide pool party is the perfect time.
To ensure the success of this event, it’s important to make preparations early on. Announce the pool party weeks before so that residents can clear their schedules. Make sure your pool area can accommodate the number of attendees, too. Of course, no pool party would be complete without food, music, and cold drinks.
Although the goal is to bring people together for fun, that doesn’t mean the rules go out the window. All pool-goers should still follow the pool rules and safety regulations.
5. Block Barbecue
Barbecue parties are virtually synonymous with summer. With such good weather, nothing compares to firing up that grill and sharing a meal with neighbors.
Your HOA can organize a block barbecue and invite everyone to join in. Residents can break out their grills and show off their tastiest recipes. This is also a good time to hold a barbecue cooking contest, with the winner getting a prize. Add music and ice-cold beverages, and you have a simple yet unforgettable Memorial Day activity.
6. Community Picnic
With the weather finally cooperating, picnics are a popular activity for Memorial Day weekend. You can even combine this with some of the other ideas on this list and have a barbecue or picnic after a Memorial run.
To organize a community picnic, you will need a large, open space, preferably one with lots of grass and trees. A park works best. Then, prepare picnic blankets and ask residents to pack their picnic baskets. Alternatively, your HOA can provide food and drinks, and blankets. For extra entertainment, consider planning fun games for the kids.
7. Community Movie Night
Movies can be entertaining and highly educational at the same time. Thus, an HOA movie night is a good way to celebrate Memorial Day while still having fun. There are several movies to choose from that fit the theme. But, if you have kids in the community, it’s best to put on family-friendly flicks such as “Valiant,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero,” and “National Treasure.”
The beauty of a movie night is that it’s one of the Memorial Day weekend things to do that suits all ages. Still, you can’t have a movie night without all the trimmings. Make sure to have some popcorn and refreshments ready for the guests. If you’re holding the screening outside, some blankets and comfy chairs will make for a cozy experience.
What Are Some Traditions Around Memorial Day?
While many HOAs and families plan events for Memorial Day weekend, some American traditions are practiced every year. Apart from the National Memorial Day Parade, many Americans fly the U.S. flag at half-staff until noon before raising it to full staff until sundown. Americans also wear red poppy pins on their shirts in commemoration of the fallen veterans. Beyond that, many people decorate the graves of soldiers at veterans’ cemeteries.
Start Planning Today
Part of running a homeowners association is planning social events that everyone can enjoy. Social events help maintain homeowner satisfaction and build strong relationships among residents. Try out one or more of these Memorial Day weekend activities for a truly memorable time.
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