May Bealtaine (Celtic Festival of Fire and Fertility) History
May Day in Ireland, like in many Celtic religions, commemorates the coming of spring and the blossoming of flowers and fruit, a festival known as Lá Bealtaine. May Day maypoles, brightly decorated tall poles with ribbons attached, are a common sight and a reminder of the country's pagan past.
May Day is also celebrated as part of the global worker’s rights movement, with protests and marches taking place in the larger cities and towns of Ireland. The contrast between the two events on this day are remarkable but each offer their own charms. The passive and contemplative aspects of May Day are countered by the vocal energy of Labour Day. May Day is on May 2.
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