From history to food to holiday travel: Memorial Day by the numbers

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Learn fun stats about Memorial Day. (Shutterstock)

Americans kick off summer on Memorial Day, often traveling to see relatives, participate in parades, and eat a whole lot of hot dogs.

Here's a look at Memorial Day by the numbers, according to WalletHub.

HISTORY

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, dates back to the Civil War. Its birthplace is disputed, as 25 American cities claim this title, according to WalletHub. The first state to officially recognize Memorial Day was New York in 1873.

PARADE

The National Memorial Day parade in Washington, D.C. will be watched by an anticipated 1.5 million television viewers on Monday. More than 1,000 active duty service members participate in the parade, as well as more than 30 high school marching bands.

TRAVEL

AAA's annual Memorial Day travel forecast predicts 2017 will be the busiest since 2005. More than 39 million Americans are expected to travel more than 50 miles from home, with 34.6 million of those travelers hitting the roads.

ACTIVITIES

One popular way to spend the weekend is taking advantage of deals in stores, which more than 40 percent of Americans said they are "likely" to do. WalletHub said shoppers can expect anywhere from 20 percent to 90 percent off of home goods and spring clothing. The personal finance site also put together a round-up of the best deals available from major retailers.

Another popular way to spend the weekend is to put on your running shoes. More than 200 running races are held each Memorial Day around the country, according to WalletHub.

FOOD

Memorial Day is one of the most popular holidays for cooking outdoors, second only to the Fourth of July. According to WalletHub, 75 percent of Americans plan to cook out this weekend.

The holiday is not only the unofficial start of summer, it's the start of hot dog season. Americans consume a grand total of 2 billion hot dogs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. That's 818 hot dogs per second.

Graphic and information by WalletHub.

Related Topics:
societytravelholiday travelAAAhot dog eatingmemorial daymilitarymarathonsshoppingdealsfood

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