And the shot heard ’round the world
Was the start of the Revolution.
The Minute Men were ready, on the move.
Take your powder, and take your gun.
Report to General Washington.
Patriots’ Day is a celebration of the anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, the first battles of the Revolutionary War. (With the success of the New England Patriots over the last 15 years, some may confuse this holiday as a celebration of football.) The battle recreations on the field in Lexington Green are very different than the battles on the field at Gillette Stadium.
Patriots’ Day is a celebration of Paul Revere and William Dawes. They mounted their horses and spread the warning: “The British are coming!” (You don’t know about Hawes because Longfellow didn’t write a poem about him.) Those rides started out with the “one if by land, two if by sea” signal from the Old North Church.
Patriots’ Day is a celebration of the Boston Marathon. Runners start their 26.2 mile journey in Hopkinton, up Heartbreak Hill by my house and into Copley Square
Patriots’ Day is a celebration of baseball, with an early Red Sox home game ending in time for baseball fans to turn into marathon fans as the runners pass near Fenway Park.
Patriots’ Day is a celebration of being out of the office. It’s a Massachusetts holiday. Since Maine was once part of Massachusetts, it’s also a holiday in Maine. (Although Maine switches the possessive to Patriot’s Day.)
So I’m out of the office today and for the rest of the week on vacation.
- Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 6, § 12J – Patriots’ Day
- Maine Stat. Rev. 9-B, § 145 (pdf)
- Boston Marathon course map