TEWKSBURY, MA — Labor Day marks the end of summer, and in a usual year features parades, beach trips, and big parties. This year, of course, the holiday is going to look much different.
Because of coronavirus, most students in Massachusetts won't return to school for a week or more, and health officials are warning residents to be cautious if attending barbecues and other events. And speaking of events, most usual Labor Day celebrations have been called off this year.
If you're sticking around the area this weekend, here's an idea of what's open and closed on Labor Day.
Government offices — Closed, including federal, state and local. Most offices were already closed (or had limited hours) due to the pandemic.
U.S. Post Office — No regular mail delivery on Sept. 7.
Businesses — Banks will mostly be closed. Chain stores and small businesses typically use the Labor Day weekend for big sales, so most will be open as usual.
Transit — No LRTA service. MBTA operates on Sunday schedule.
Trash — Trash pickup is delayed one day.
A brief history of Labor Day
The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated in 1882, with a parade in New York City, but the question of who first proposed the idea of a holiday to honor workers is in dispute more than a century later.
Congress didn't recognize the holiday until what History.com calls a "watershed moment" in American labor history: the 1894 Pullman Palace Car Company strike in Chicago. The strike led to sending federal troops into the city to quell rioters. Just days later, President Grover Cleveland signed a law making Labor Day, the first Monday of September, a national holiday.