May Day celebrations kick off May 1st in nearly every corner of the globe. It’s a long held European holiday with deep pagan and labor roots. Yet, celebrating Spring’s arrival has created new traditions from Spain to Hawaii, where “Lei Day” is infused with Polynesian culture.

Say “Spring,” say “May Day,” and images of children playing around the maypole or music, flowers and food come to mind. This is all good and fine, but I implore you to stretch a little. Stretch and grab your passport (if needed) then head to Hastings, UK where the Jack in the Green Festival has become a tradition not to miss.

 

For four glorious days (April 28th – May 1st 2017), the town of Hastings grabs paints, leaves and all types of greenery and they party!  Where else are you going to get the opportunity to celebrate Spring, get lit with Brits and wear green paint and costumes? I’ll wait… While you’re searching for an answer, check out our photo sereis on  Hastings’s Jack in the Green festival and if you decide to attend this year, tag us (#GriotsRepublic) on your social media updates. We want to see you green for Spring.

GENERAL HISTORY OF THE JACK IN THE GREEN

According to the article JACK IN THE GREEN HASTINGS 2017, “the Jack in the Green festival dates back to the 16th and 17th centuries in England. Originally it was a May Day celebration where people would make garlands with flowers and greenery. The garlands became increasingly elaborate as work’s guilds would compete against each other, eventually so extravagantly that they covered the body entirely. The garlands were originally carried by milk maids during May Day Parades – They became larger and more intricate to the point where they would balance them on their heads whilst the rest of their bodies would be adorned with silver houseware.”

If this sounds like your kind of party, then get out there and Happy May Day!

For more information on the Jack In The Green Festival, visit: www.hastingsjitg.co.uk

 

IMG: ‘Jack in the Green’ May Day Celebrations, Hastings, May 2014. Vicki Burton. Flickr. CC BY SA 2.0

 

IMG: Jack in the Green Festival Hastings. Duncan Price. Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0

 

IMG: Jack in the Green Festival Hastings. Duncan Price. Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0

IMG: Jack in the Green Festival Hastings. Duncan Price. Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0

IMG: Jack in the Green Festival Hastings. Duncan Price. Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0

IMG: ‘Jack in the Green’ May Day Celebrations, Hastings, May 2014. Vicki Burton. Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0

IMG: Jack in the Green Festival Hastings. Duncan Price. Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0

Liked it? Take a second to support Griots Republic on Patreon!

Comments