PLYMOUTH – For most Americans, one of the earliest parts of history education in elementary school involves the good ship Mayflower. When you are a kid, you learn about how pilgrims from Europe set out on the Mayflower across an unknown ocean.
Next year, Massachusetts will celebrate the four hundredth anniversary of the Mayflower’s voyage across the seas and people are pulling out all the stops to commemorate this major milestone. Additionally, these events will not only be exclusive to Plymouth and other such regions of Massachusetts. Thanks to a number of broadcast networks and Mayflower-based organizations, many of the events will be available online via streaming.
The celebrations are slated to begin on the morning of April 24, 2020 with an opening ceremony for the 400th Commemoration, which will feature many different forms of storytelling about the Plymouth events, including music, oral tradition, dance, and historical readings.
The biggest news of the anniversary is that of the Mayflower II. Refurbishment has been ongoing for the Mayflower II for three years now and it will finally return to the public eye from May 14 to May 19 next year as it will set sail. Projected to come into Boston Harbor, the Mayflower II is expected to stop in the Charlestown Navy Yard. It’ll be the closest thing we get to seeing the actual Mayflower land in Massachusetts.
On June 27 and June 29, a Maritime Salute will be held as the organizers plan to honor the trip that the pilgrims made aboard the ship. Seafood will, of course, be served and maritime officials will take the reigns of the services.
Lastly, on November 25, Thanksgiving will be commemorated with “Illuminate Thanksgiving,” a special event that will consist of parades and concerts in the days leading up to the national holiday, which came about because of the pilgrims’ voyage.
Mark your calendars; this will truly be a once-in-a-lifetime year for fans of history, Massachusetts, and autumnal foods.