12 Things to Do for Memorial Day Weekend with Family and Friends

Bikes decorated for Memorial Day
Photo: Gretchen Easton

Celebrate the holiday with these fun things to do for Memorial Day weekend. We're sharing ways you can pay your respects, enjoy quality family time, and make meaningful memories. These Memorial Day activities are fun, inexpensive, and perfect for the whole family.

01 of 12

Have Dinner Outside

Family having dinner outside
Edmund Barr

Gather for a casual dinner outside to celebrate the unofficial start of summer. Keep the dishes and decor simple; bunches of fresh-from-the-garden blooms star on this summer table. Serve up dishes that showcase in-season produce like berries, asparagus, and greens.

02 of 12

Play Yard Games

Two kids playing bags in yard
Edmund Barr

Get the family outside with a yard game competition. Set out fun, classic things to do for Memorial Day weekend, like bags, ring toss, and horseshoes. Plan a friendly competition and take turns rotating through the games.

03 of 12

Host a Family Pizza Party

People making personal pizzas outside
Jason Donnelly

The secret to a summer pizza party? Your grill! Head outside with all the fixings for pizza, and cook them up on the grill. Let each kid customize their own and serve up easy sides like salad and a charcuterie board.

04 of 12

Have a Picnic

Basket filled with picnic supplies
Andy Lyons

One of the best things to do for Memorial Day weekend is to head to a local park and eat outside. Pack up ready-to-go recipes and toss a picnic blanket in the car. Bring games, Memorial Day decor, and more for a fun day of family activities.

05 of 12

Watch a Movie Outside

An outdoor movie setup in yard
Rebekah Molloy

Memorial Day weekend is no time to be inside! Gather the family and set up an outdoor movie screen. It's easier than you think and is a fun thing to do for Memorial Day weekend. Keep the screen up to use all summer long! Don't forget the popcorn.

06 of 12

Go to the Beach

Family walking together on beach
Blaine Moats

If you live near an open beach, sink your toes into the sand and relax by enjoying one of the most well-loved things to do Memorial Day weekend. Gather your family and head to the local shores. Whether it's a beach, lake, or pond, your family will love being outside. Don't forget the sunscreen, drinks, and towels!

07 of 12

Get Grilling

Grilled Chicken with Blueberry-Tarragon Sauce
Carson Downing

Fire up the grill and enjoy a feast outside. Memorial Day weekend is perfect for uncovering your grill and cooking food over the coals. This year, try an unexpected recipe like this Grilled Chicken with Blueberry-Tarragon Sauce.

08 of 12

Have Brunch

Bloody Mary bar
Kat Teutsch

Kick off Memorial Day weekend with a delicious (and patriotic!) brunch. Even at home, you can make the weekend special with a DIY Bloody Mary bar and fun red, white, and blue decor.

09 of 12

Camp in the Backyard

Children in yard in tent
Rebekah Molloy

Sleeping under the stars is a fun thing to do on Memorial Day for adults and older kids. Set up a tent with plenty of pillows and blankets for comfortable snoozing. Read books, stargaze, and enjoy each other's company during Memorial Day weekend.

10 of 12

Roast S'mores

Campfire smores spread on table
Laurie Black Photography

Dessert is a must-have for any Memorial Day cookout. And nothing screams summer like a smoky roasted s'more. Set up an outdoor fire pit and all the fixings to make classic s'mores. Adults and kids will love this fun Memorial Day activity.

11 of 12

Pay Respects

Cemetery with trees

Pay tribute to those who served by visiting a nearby cemetery. Place flags and flowers on the graves and honor those who have fought for our country. It's a great way to spend quality time with family and honor the meaning and history of the holiday.

12 of 12

Go Biking

Bikes decorated for Memorial Day
Gretchen Easton

May is National Bike Month. If you don't already have bikes for the family, late spring is a good time to invest in one you can use all summer. Dress up your bikes with Memorial Day decorations like stars and streamers, then head out for a family ride. Add embellishments to your helmets, and wear red, white, and blue for a fun and patriotic ride around town.

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