It is almost Labor Day weekend. It marks the unofficial end of summer, fabulous sales, and what used to be the time to put away your white clothes for the winter. But why do we celebrate it? Let’s find out!
Labor Day is set aside to appreciate the working class and honor their contributions in helping our country grow and prosper. Celebrated each year on the first Monday in September, the national federal holiday in the United States and Canada, gives most people the day off of work. And, since it always falls on a Monday, it means a three day weekend!
Labor Day was first observed in 1882, during a time when many Americans worked long days in harsh and unsafe work environments for little money. These workers joined together to create unions, which were organized groups created to speak out for the rights of all members. On September 5, 1882, union workers in New York City took an unpaid day off of work to protest the poor working conditions. Afterward, many of the workers stayed behind to eat and enjoy the day off of work with their families -- and that was the first labor day picnic!
Twelve years later, in 1894, Congress passed an act that made Labor Day a national holiday. And that’s why we celebrate today!
So, how shall we celebrate in McDonough?
Things to do over Labor Day Weekend Near Henry County
While many businesses, including the libraries, are closed in recognition of the holiday, you can still enjoy the local parks, shopping, and restaurants. Be sure to double check if the establishment is open and what its hours are.
1. Try out a new hobby with the kids. Grab a frisbee and head to a local park to try some disc golf. Read all about the game and how to get started with your kids.
2. Go to Tanger Outlets and check out the Labor Day sales.
3. Pack a picnic, perhaps some charcuterie and go to a park or head to a nearby lake for a picnic and water play.
- Lloyd Shoals Park at 180 Dam Rd, in Jackson, GA is owned and operated by Georgia Power and is open to the public with a swimming beach, playground, picnic pavilion, barrier-free fishing pier, barrier-free boat ramp, and public restroom.
- Factory Shoals Park at 450 Newton Factory Bridge Rd in nearby Covington, includes 450 acres of picnicking, swimming, hiking, fishing.
4. Pick up some ice cream at your favorite local ice cream shop. Here are some of our favorite local ice cream shops.
Welcome Home in Hampton
5. Hike Panola Mountain State Park.
6. Learn about nature and the environment at The Newlands Wetland Center
7. See the water fall at High Falls State Park at 76 High Falls Park Drive in Jackson.
8. Splash around at a Splash Pad.
- McBrayer Park Splash Pad on Central Avenue in Hampton is open 7 days a week from 11 am to 7 pm. Admission is free for Hampton residents and $5 per child, cash only for non-Hampton residents.
- Avalon Park at 1045 Industrial Parkway in McDonough has a splash pad that opened in 2019. The splash pad is open M-F from 10 am to 9 pm, Saturday 9 am – 8 pm, and Sunday from Noon to 8 pm. Admission is free.
9. Visit Quarry's Edge Park, the site where many TV and movie scenes have filmed. Located at 901 W. Quilly Street in Griffin, the park has numerous trails around the quarry for hiking, mountain biking, and bouldering. The quarry is the site of many shows on the small and big screen including The Walking Dead, The Vampire Diaries, Stranger Things, Hunger Games, and more.
10. Choose a traditional Labor Day celebration at the Red, White AND BLUE - Labor Day Spectacular in Peachtree City on September 3rd.
11. Get in an end of summer day at the water park during the 🌊 Spivey Splash Labor Day Celebration on September 3rd.
12. Labor Day at Stone Mountain will be celebrated all weekend with a Laser Show honoring working heroes each night.
13. Meet your favorite fantasy and comic characters at the Dragon Con Parade in downtown Atlanta on September 3rd.
14. After the parade, visit the World of Coca-Cola and save 15% off your ticket with this link.
15. Enjoy the beauty of the🎈 Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival at Callaway Gardens on September 3rd. Spend the day enjoying the gardens or playing beachside and then watching the hot air balloons drift away in the sunset.
16. Enjoy the trills at Fun Spot America Atlanta in Fayetteville and save 30% on admission with this link.
17. Go under the sea at the Georgia Aquarium and save 24% on admission .
18. Make a s'mores buffet at your firepit.
19. Enjoy a juicy burger. Here are our favorite places to get a hamburger.
20. Have a backyard party. Here are five great ideas for backyard parties.