While the summer solstice is not until June 21st, we are starting the summer party early. Consistent with every other year, the unofficial start to summer happens on Memorial Day. It’s officially BBQ season and spend every second possible outdoor season. The holiday does have some meaning that we should recognize before we start the party.

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for mourning the U.S. military personnel who have died while serving in the United States armed forces. It is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formerly observed on May 30 from 1868 to 1970. So yes, this means a day off but let’s remember why as we pop open summer beers and inhale the scents from the grill.

If your NYC apartment doesn’t have access to a grill or outdoor space, do not worry. This place has plenty to do! In fact, you’ll have access to the city in a way that is not typical during normal times. Crowds will rush out east, down the shore and up north standing still in hours of traffic. While that is happening, the world is your oyster. At least, New York City is. And where else is there in the world?

Memorial Day is absolutely one of the best times to be in New York City. With inspiring parades commemorating one of the United States’ most important holidays, incredible springtime weather that makes exploring a breeze, and a city that doesn’t feel quite as packed, there are plenty of reasons to stay in town for Memorial Day. And if traffic isn’t your thing, add that to the list too!

So, with the weekend that starts it all only a few days away and NYC finally reopening, it means that New Yorkers are ready to party like they haven’t before! Whether it’s the barbecue, the beach or a rooftop, summer is here!