Skies out, thighs out! It’s finally the season to bask under the delicious rays of the sun and give thanks for the (hopefully) beautiful weather we’ve been given. And on the first day of May, we have an excuse to do just that.
May Day, also known as Beltane, is a celebration that honors the sun and the shifting of the season. It’s a Pagan holiday of fertility — both ours and the earth’s. And yes, dancing around a May Pole takes place on May Day (not to be confused with the other “May Day,” the workers rights festival). May Day is also a cross-quarter day, falling more or less between the spring equinox and the summer solstice. It’s a day that honors the approach of summer and the impending warmth that it brings.
Even if you’re not Pagan, you can still celebrate the warm, fiery spirit of the holiday and give thanks for the love of this beautiful earth. May Day is typically celebrated in the Northern Hemisphere, since it’s autumn in the Southern Hemisphere, and since it’s a fire festival that’s best celebrated under the warm rays of the sun. If you’re looking to celebrate, we have a few easy and fun ways to do just that.
Have a bonfire.
Having a bonfire, and jumping over it, is a May Day tradition! So what better excuse to grab all your favorite humans, some marshmallows and snacks, and huddle around a fire? Take some time to share stories and to listen to the roaring fire, enjoying one another’s company. Beltane is a time to be thankful for what you have, so you can even go around the bonfire and say what you’re thankful for if you’re so inclined!
Make a flower crown.
If you’ve ever wondered why the flower crown trend always pops up around this time of year, here you go! May Day is classically a time to honor the faeries (those energetic beings who, according to Pagan lore, live in a parallel realm to our own), and flowers are a way to do just that. Grab some fresh flowers, wire, and floral tape, and make your own flower crown to wear. You can use whatever flowers you like; just be sure to thank them for their help!
Make an altar.
An altar is a way to focus your energy, using items that hold meaning for you. Since May Day is a celebration of the fertility of the earth, your altar should have plenty of green and bright spring colors like those of daffodils, cornflowers, lilacs, and daisies. You can also add candles in red, orange, yellow, and gold, as well as acorns, nuts and antlers.
Your altar is a place for you to find connection and peace, so listen to what makes you feel the most grounded and comfortable — anything revolving around fertility and new beginnings is a good place to look for inspiration.
Do a little dance, make a little love.
Hey, it IS a fertility celebration. So if you choose to celebrate, enjoy! Make it an offering to the season, to all the beauty the spring has brought and everything that it will bring. And if you’re wanting to start a family, this may be the perfect occasion to try to make that happen. If you’re not, just remember to be safe and use protection!
However you choose to celebrate, we hope it’s filled with lots of love and plenty of sunshine.