Culture / Entertainment

Houston’s Memorial Day Weekend Guide — The Coronavirus Cannot Stop All the Fun

The Space Center's Throwing a Campout Party and Major Museums are Reopening

BY // 05.19.20

There’s no denying that this Houston Memorial Day weekend will look quite a bit different than Memorial Day weekends of the past – but that doesn’t mean you should skip right over the holiday and refrain from celebrating. If anything, this year should be a prime time to remember the holiday’s real reason for existing — to honor all those who serve or have served in the military.

While there may be no public parades and no public gatherings, there are still events worth “attending” and activities worth enjoying to make the most of your socially-distant long weekend and commemorate the national holiday.

Virtual Campout at Space Center Houston

Camping season is virtually (no pun intended) in full swing, so now is the opportune time to pitch that flimsy backyard tent and enjoy a Virtual Campout with Space Center Houston.

This Friday, May 22, the center will host a virtual campout for Houston’s greatest astronomy fans. The event will feature hands-on activities and guest speakers, plus virtual tours of the center’s exhibits (you’ll have to download the Space Center Houston app for that one).

To make sure that everyone has the chance to participate, Space Center Houston is waiving the traditional Campout fee and graciously allowing guests to register by paying what they can (per person), with the idea that no virus (lookin’ at you COVID-19) should prevent anyone from experiencing the center’s fun and educational activities.

Museum Reopenings

After months of closure, the galleries at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (main campus), Rienzi, and Bayou Bend are reopening.

This Saturday, May 23, Houstonians will be allowed to enjoy all that the famed museums have to offer — obviously with new restrictions strictly in place. All visitors will be required to wear face masks, have their temperatures taken and remain socially distant, among the museums’ other health and safety measures.

The overall experience may be a little different, but rest assured, the beautiful art is not.

The MFAH, Rienzi, and Bayou Bend will each be opening this weekend.

Memorial Day 10K

Whether or not quarantining has made you a super-runner, this Monday, May 25, Houston Running Co. will be hosting its 2nd Annual Memorial Day 10K, perfect preparation for all that Memorial Day barbecue and beer.

Instead of being held in-person, though, the race will done virtually. The idea is simple – just register ($40), run, and enter in your finish time using the submission link you received upon registering. All finishers will get their own downloadable finisher certificates, and (later on) cool T-shirts and medals in the mail.

Washington D.C. Road Trip

You may want to physically travel to Washington, D.C. this Memorial Day, but you can still experience the city as if you were there.

Kick off the D.C. with beloved dynamic duo Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise at PBS’ annual National Memorial Day Concert, this Sunday, May 24. As always, the program will broadcast various performances, concerts and more to honor America’s servicemen and women.

To keep with the travel theme, be sure you virtually stick around D.C. through Monday, May 25, when the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (the nonprofit responsible for the striking Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall) hosts its traditional Memorial Day Ceremony online. In addition to viewing the event and taking a virtual tour of the Memorial, you’re are also encouraged to write personal messages or record video messages to recognize friends, family members, or loved ones who served in the Vietnam War. These notes of gratitude and remembrance will be (and already are being) shared on the VVMF website for all to see and read, truly making this holiday more personal than ever before.

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