What to Do Labor Day Weekend 2016 | Memphis Moms Blog


labor day weekend 2016 Emily Patterson Memphis Moms Blog

I can remember swimming in my grandparents’ pool till dusk while the adults sat in aluminum lawn chairs drinking homemade daiquiris while they waited on the crawfish or shrimp or crabs (or all three) to boil.  The Labor Days of my childhood were a chance to see out-of-town cousins, stay up past our bedtimes, and swim till our skin was prune-like.  I had no concept of work, of this thing they called “labor.”  It was something that adults did, not carefree children like me.

As an adult, I have a new appreciation of Labor Day. I still love this holiday, but for different reasons. My cousins and I are grown, with children of our own, and my grandparent’s home where we gathered on those warm-weather occasions was swept away by the winds and water of Katrina.  Yet now, I recall those gatherings with not only nostalgia but a sense of understanding.  What appeared to me as nothing more than a backyard party was a celebration of something much more meaningful: Accomplishment, progress, and a sense of purpose. But it also gave us reason to pause, to stop and enjoy what we have worked towards… to rest.

According to the US Department of Labor, Labor Day is a “creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American Workers.”  It was first recognized as a national holiday in 1894 after the Pullman Labor strike was broken, calling for street parades and recreational amusement for workers and their families.  Over a century later, this annual tradition still pays homage to all of the hard work that has gone into making our country the prosperous, strong, and enviable nation that it stands today.  Labor Day is also the unofficial end of Summer. Schools start back (if it hasn’t already), fall sports begin again, and heaven forbid you should be seen in white after this date!  It marks the end of one season and the start of a new one. And with that, we experience a sort of renewal.

As a mother with a family of my own now, our Labor Days are spent in ways not so different than those of my youth–leisurely by the pool among friends or at breezy barbecues with family.  It is a welcomed departure from the everyday routine of work, school, and chores–a chance to be still and to enjoy the life that we have built. Whether you celebrate this national holiday with great fanfare or just by simply enjoying the break, know that you are paying tribute to one of the most meaningful historic traditions of our great country.  This Labor Day, take the chance to celebrate with some of these exciting area events and traditions:

On September 1st {9/01}, Memphis will be celebrating 901 Day!

901 Day at Exposure
September 1, 2016 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Autozone Park
On 901 Day (in other cities, just known as September 1, 2016) New Memphis will host a celebration of all things Memphis at Exposure. And the whole city is invited!

This is your chance to turn your love for Memphis into action. Meet 150+ local organizations, businesses & hidden gems. Feast your eyes on fireworks, live performances, local music & the first ever, local-celebrity kickball game. Find fresh ways to get involved and give back. Partake in fun activities, eat something tasty, drink something delicious and be merry.

For a full list of celebrations and deals happening around town, visit 901day.com.

Other fun things going on around town:

Memphis Music and Heritage Festival
September 3-4, 2016 from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM
Main Street (between Union and Peabody Place)
Produced by the Center for Southern Folklore, the Memphis Music and Heritage Festival is a celebration of music, culture, arts, and the rhythms of Memphis on six stages.  Workshops, craft tables, and food vendors round out this annual event, giving attendees a chance to “celebrate Memphis’ musical roots and enjoy many contemporary twists to our musical heritage”.

Chick-fil-A 5k
September 5, 2016 at 8:00 AM (9:00 for Kids Dash)
Autozone Park
Run/Walk: $25
Kid Dash: $10
Benefiting the Junior Achievement of Memphis and the Mid-South, the annual Chick-fil-A 5k draws thousands of people who run or walk through some of the most notable sites in downtown and celebrate at the finish line with the best chicken sandwich in the world! Strollers are welcome and a Kid’s Dash has been added this year!

Delta Fair & Music Festival
September 2-11, 2016
Agricenter International
Kids under 4 and seniors are FREE, youth are $5, and adults are $10 for entry
Enjoy rides, games, animals, music, and best of all, FAIR FOOD at the annual Delta Fair and Music Festival!

30 Days of Celebration at Shelby Farms Park
September 1-30, 2016
Shelby Farms Park
Help celebrate the opening of Shelby Farm’s biggest improvement project—Heart of the Park with FREE events that will have you falling in love with one of Memphis’ greatest assets all over again! From belly dancing to nature boot camp to food trucks, there will be something for everyone each day in September!

And of course, you can’t forget about football on Labor Day weekend!

University of Memphis vs. Missouri State Football Game
September 3, 2016 at 6:00 PM
Liberty Bowl Stadium
Cheer on your Memphis Tigers against Missouri State and enjoy a FREE pre-game concert by the Dantones at 4:00 PM.


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Emily was born in Louisiana and raised on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She met her husband in college and moved to Memphis in 2002 right after they got married. They first lived downtown and then in East Memphis, before settling further east in Germantown in 2011. They had their son, Gray, in October 2007 and their daughter, Hayes, only 20 months later in July 2009. Emily's kids are only one grade apart and are often mistaken for twins. Emily loves red wine, peanut butter, all things homemade and DIY, hot baths, and laughing so hard you cry.