Culture Guide USA – May
April showers bring May flowers – and May usually brings beautiful, warm weather and lots of fun activities. During this month, you can visit historic sites and celebrate an American holiday. Explore a national park and watch the fastest horses in the country race for victory. Step outside, soak in the sun, and enjoy everything this great month has to offer!
This holiday was originally created in the 1800s to remember soldiers who died in the American Civil War. Now Americans honor the lives of every American soldier who died in military service on the last Monday of May each year. On this special day, most businesses and schools are closed. Soldiers’ graves are marked with American flags, and parades pay tribute to the men and women who bravely sacrificed their lives for their country.
Called “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports,” this horse race ends almost as quickly as it begins—but wow, is it a thrill! The Kentucky Derby is an annual 1¼-mile race for 3-year-old Thoroughbred horses held at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Today, it’s an American tradition. For 139 years, fans have been traveling to Kentucky to watch the fastest, strongest horses compete at the Derby. This year, the Kentucky Derby will take place on Saturday, May 3. Tune in on television, and before the race, you’ll see people wearing fancy clothes and distinctive hats, and they’ll sing My Old Kentucky Home before the horses parade to the start. Place a friendly bet on which horse will earn the victory and the blanket of roses.
The Golden Gate Bridge
One of America’s greatest cities, San Francisco, California, is known for its dramatic landscapes, an infamous prison on Alcatraz Island, cable cars, and the Golden Gate Bridge. The Golden Gate Bridge is more than just a suspension bridge that passes over the Golden Gate strait, connecting San Francisco to northern California. It’s a stunning landmark that attracts more than 10 million visitors each year. The 3-mile bridge took four years to build and opened on May 27, 1937. You’ll find a statue of its chief engineer, Joseph Strauss, near the bridge.
Redwood National Park
California also is home to Redwood National and State Parks, in the northern part of the state. These parks have a lot to offer, but it’s the towering coast redwood trees that make them so famous. At 300 feet, the coast redwood is the tallest type of tree in the world. They can grow up to 30 feet in diameter – wide enough to drive a car through! Today, these rare trees can be found only in California, Oregon, and China.