Labour Day Preview: History, Celebrations, TV Schedule
Labour Day is celebrated in North America on the first Monday of September, which falls on September 7 this year. Traditionally, the holiday brings the much awaited end-of-the-summer long weekend for most people in United States and Canada. It also usually marks the last day before school kicks into gear, causing many busy parents to run amok with back-to-school shopping over the weekend.
But, what is the history behind this holiday, and why do we take a day-off on Labour Day?
Labour Day commemorates labour movement, which advocated for better working conditions, such as the eight-hour day, two-day weekend, minimum wage, paid holidays, etc.
In Canada, Labour Day has been celebrated for over 129 years, ever since 1880. In 1872, a labour demonstration calling for a 58-hour-week prompted the government to pass the Trade Union Act which made labour unions legal. Labour Day was made an official holiday in Canada on July 23, 1894.
In the United States, Labour Day became an official holiday the same year. But, the first Labour Day was celebrated on September 5, 1882, in New York City. The inspiration to organize Labour Day in the States came from Canada, on the initiative of a labour leader Peter J. McGuire.
Labour Day is a day-off to celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of workers in North America.
Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.
What is on TV?
College football season begins on September 3. The games are on September 5-7. For the TV schedule, see here.
Tennis fans will have time to enjoy US Open taking place in New York City right now. Saturday and Sunday, September 5 and 6, will feature the 3rd rounds of men's and women's matches with rounds of 16 coming on Monday.
FIBA Americas Championship is taking place August 26-September 6. September 7 and 8 will see some basketball action with semifinals set for Saturday and finals ready to roll Sunday.
For many people, Labour Day is the last chance to soak up summer sun and relax outdoors. Some people spend a day at the beach, others go picnicking, hiking, boating, bird-watching, what have you. Whatever one does, it is definitely a precious opportunity to spend quality time together with your family and friends before the unending streak of work and the academic year start. The next closest long weekend for Canadians is the Thanksgiving weekend - October 10-12. For Americans, it is the Columbus Day celebrated over the same time frame. That means we will have 32 days to go before the next long week, so enjoy your Labour Day weekend while it is here!