Memorial Day is a day to honor those who lost their lives while serving in the United States Armed Forces. But as most Americans know, it is also a time when businesses offer freebies, sales, specials, and deals.
Here are some of the best ones for 2020.
Memorial Day Sales & Deals
Amazon: This retail giant is offering over 60 percent off appliances, electronics, and smart home devices.
Ashley Furniture: Get up to 50 percent off indoor and outdoor furniture.
Banana Republic: Take up to 30 percent off T-shirts and men’s polo shirts, 40 percent off denim, and up to 50 percent off dresses and men’s dress shirts.
Bed, Bath & Beyond: Take up to 50 percent off home products and outdoor products.
Best Buy: Get up to $900 off appliances.
Birch Lane: Up to 70 percent off sitewide.
Gap: Get up to 50 percent off sitewide.
Home Depot: Up to 40 percent off select outdoor furniture, grills, appliances, and more.
Kate Spade: Get up to 50 percent off sitewide.
Lowe’s: Take up to 40 percent off grills, patio furniture, appliances, and more.
Maytag: Up to $700 in rebates through June 3.
Microsoft: Up to $500 off laptops and desktop computers.
Nike: Take up to 40 percent off select styles.
Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack: Up to 60 percent off select items and up to 70 percent off Rack clothing and accessories.
Old Navy:: Up to 50 percent off sitewide.
Walmart: Up to 60 percent off furniture, electronics, and more.
Wayfair: Up to 70 percent off on patio and home items.
Memorial Day Freebies
Ancestry.com: Get free access to over 500 million military records on Fold3.
Burger King: Through May 25, Burger King is offering free french fries when you spend $15 on Postmates and use the code “FRYDAY.”
Clinique: Get a free 7-piece summer kit with any $45 order. Choose from four different kits.
Hooters: 20 percent off all takeout orders for military personnel, active or retired, plus on May 25, free meals for veterans from a special menu with a drink purchase at participating locations.
Subway: Now through Memorial Day, buy one footlong sub and the second is free on the Subway app or website.
Thrive Market: Veterans and their families can get a $60 membership for free.
Whataburger: Buy one Whataburger online, get one free now through May 25.
The History of Memorial Day
Memorial Day as we know it dates back to 1868 when it was called “Decoration Day” in a proclamation by General John A. Logan of Illinois, according to “Decoration Day in the Mountains: Traditions of Cemetery Decoration in the Southern Appalachians” by Alan Jabbour and Karen Singer Jabbour. An organization of Union army veterans called the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) quickly established Decoration Day as a “time for the nation to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers,” according to the Constitution Center.
Prior to that, several states had their own versions of a day to honor those who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces, but the 1868 proclamation is really what got the ball rolling in turning Memorial Day into a national holiday. By 1890, every state had made “Decoration Day” an official state holiday and the cemetery ceremonies were becoming more consistent from state to state.
The GAR said that Decoration Day should always be observed on May 30 because that would be when flowers were blooming across most of the country. Over the years, the use of “Memorial Day” became more and more common until finally, the federal government adopted “Memorial Day” as the official title in 1967. The Uniform Holidays Bill of 1968 is what moved Memorial Day to the last Monday in May and that is how Memorial Day has been observed since.
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