Labor Day weekend is upon us in Champaign-Urbana, and what does that mean? It’s the (un)official end of summer. Time for pools to close and barbecues to fire up. It’s also a time to reflect on those who toiled before us and fought for our rights (eight-hour workday, anyone? Oh right, we’re parents. … ha!)
Some Labor Day trivia:
- Grover Cleveland made Labor Day a federal holiday in 1894 after a failed attempt to break-up a railroad strike.
- The first U.S. observance of Labor Day came in the form of a parade sponsored by the Central Labor Union. On Sept. 5, 1882, 10,000 workers paraded through New York City in order to gain support for the eight-hour workday.
- Labor Day has its origins in Canada. YES CANADA!
- In many other countries, May Day (May 1) is the day working people are honored.
What else you need to know about Labor Day in Champaign-Urbana:
What is CLOSED?
Government offices: Federal, state, county and city administrative offices closed.
Postal service: All post offices will be closed. No mail will be delivered.
Courts: Federal, state and county closed.
Banks: Most closed.
Libraries: All are closed.
Transit: No CUMTD service. Amtrak operates as usual.
Parking: As a city holiday, metered parking in Champaign and Urbana is free on Labor Day.
Museums: All are closed except for the Museum of the Grand Prairie at Lake of the Woods, open 1-5 p.m.
What is OPEN?
Grocery stores, some retail (most mom and pop places will be closed), car dealers. Call ahead when in doubt.
Swimming pools: It’s the season swan song for area public (and many private) pools. Sholem Aquatic Center, Crystal Lake Family Aquatic Center, Hap Family Aquatic Center are open. At Sholem, everyone gets 50% off the cost of admission all weekend long. Crystal Lake Family Aquatic Center also has a half price offer, and anybody with a military ID gets in for free.
Clinton Lake Beach: Open through this weekend.
Boating: Crystal Lake Park and Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve still offer boating through this weekend, weather permitting. You can also drive down to Lake Shelbyville, but being Labor Day, you may want to check ahead of time to see if boats are available.