I love the concept that someone or some association has figured out a clever marketing strategy to create a food holiday: A one-month long celebration of a specific food. Those who worry a month is too long create single day celebrations. This month of May is no different, but there are days that are ingrained and deserve a special mention.
Here’s my list of May must dos:
–May 1 is the Kentucky Derby so host a derby event or at least proclaim this day as a Mint Julep extravaganza.
–May 5 translates lovingly as Cinco de Mayo, a regionally celebrated holiday in Mexico. This holiday needs little help from bloggers as most bars and many restaurants have figured out how to draw the crowds to this annual party. If you want to host a home version, you’ll find no shortage of guacamole recipes and grocery store enticements to make this a fun event.
–May 9 or the second Sunday in May gets the traditional Mother’s Day nod. This day should be devoted to the care and feeding of Mom instead of the image of aproned Mom slaving over a hot stove. Whether that is the norm of the American family anymore proves irrelevant as Mother’s Day has become a true celebration and a financial boost for many businesses.
–May 11 will prove to be a diet guru’s worst nightmare as it has been called Eat What You Want Day. Can’t even make this stuff up!
As for monthly festivities, here are a few to whet your appetite:
–National Barbecue Month (note how this month is spelled). If your weather hasn’t cooperated and your grilling has been minimal, this month should help you initiate your outdoor skills. Or view this as the time to eat barbecue. After all, at the end of the month, there is a mini food celebration: National Brisket Day. If you want to fire up an argument, ask a chef or BBQ owner for the brisket recipe!
–National Egg Month. Here’s an example of a food that has worked its way into daily routines and cooking schedules. Maybe it deserves a month of recognition for its across-the-board popularity unless health dictates otherwise. There’s always egg whites!
–National Hamburger Month. Maybe this year the hamburger will be celebrated as the food with the single biggest comeback or growth market. Have you not noticed how the basic burger has spawned a legion of restaurants dedicated to its renewed popularity? Name your city; you probably have a new burger spot. Why not?
If you’re on the festival lookout, this month kicks off some big ones including the 51st annual Artichoke Festiival (May 15-16) in Castroville, CA. The artichoke would not be a common globe at many dinner tables if this city hadn’t figured it out. As you’re roaming around, step over to The Giant Artichoke restaurant and discover all the recipes you never thought possible! BTW, if you go, you need to swing over to nearby Gilroy, home of the summertime Garlic Festival.
The following week focuses summer and one of the fastest growing beverage concepts, craft beers, with the celebration of American Craft Beer Week beginning May 17. Plenty of bars, restaurants, markets, and brewpubs will be in on this action. No shortage of promotions to entice.
So many foods, celebrations, and festivals make this an especially delicious food-centered month.