What’s Open and Closed on Memorial Day

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Memorial Day, observed on the last Monday of May, serves as a time to honor those who have died in military service to their country. It’s also a day when many in the United States welcome the unofficial beginning of summer with various celebrations, gatherings, and remembrances. As people plan their Memorial Day activities, understanding which establishments are open and which are closed can be crucial for coordinating events and outings.

Many retail stores, supermarkets, and national chains remain open on Memorial Day, offering special sales or extended hours to accommodate the needs of shoppers and celebrants. For example, stores like Walmart and Target generally maintain regular business hours to serve their customers. Conversely, some businesses, especially those that are locally operated, may choose to close their doors to observe the holiday, reflecting on its significance and giving their employees a day of rest.

Government offices, banks, and the postal service typically do not operate on Memorial Day. As such, services that rely on government operations, including mail delivery and in-person banking, are unavailable. The closure of government offices extends to schools and non-essential services, which all observe the day by suspending operations. It’s always advised to check with the specific establishment for their exact hours of operation on this federal holiday.

Federal Government Services

Federal Government Services observe Memorial Day as a federal holiday, causing closures across various government-run operations.

Postal Services

  • U.S. Postal Service (USPS): All post offices are closed on Memorial Day with no standard mail delivery. Only Priority Mail Express is operational.

Government Offices

  • Federal Offices: They remain closed on Memorial Day.
  • State Government: State government offices also observe the holiday with closures.

Financial Institutions

On Memorial Day, most financial institutions observe the federal holiday, meaning a majority of banks and stock markets remain closed.


  • Major Banks: Large institutions like Chase and Wells Fargo are typically closed.
  • Local Banks: Local branches generally follow the closure policies of larger banks on federal holidays.

Stock Markets

  • NYSE: The New York Stock Exchange is closed on Memorial Day.
  • NASDAQ: Similarly, the NASDAQ also does not operate on this holiday.

Retail Outlets

During Memorial Day, retail outlet hours may vary by location, but many maintain regular operating hours, allowing consumers to shop at their convenience.

Grocery Stores

  • Walmart: Open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.
  • Kroger-affiliated stores (Baker’s, City Market, Dillons, Food 4 Less, Foods Co, Fred Meyer, Fry’s): Check local stores for specific hours.

Department Stores

  • Target: Stores maintain regular business hours.
  • Sam’s Club:
    • Plus members: Open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    • Club members: Open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Specialty Stores

  • Goodwill: Store hours will vary; some locations may be closed.
  • Ikea: Open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. nationwide.

Transportation Services

On Memorial Day, transportation services typically follow a holiday schedule, which may affect their operation hours and availability.

Public Transit

Most public transit systems operate on a Sunday or holiday schedule. This can mean reduced bus, subway, and train services. Travelers should check with their local transit authorities for specific schedules and any service changes on Memorial Day.

Air Travel

Airports remain operational on Memorial Day, but flyers may experience changes in flight schedules. It’s advisable to check with airlines for any potential delays or cancellations. Additional time should also be allotted for security procedures due to potentially increased passenger volume.

Leisure and Recreation

During Memorial Day, individuals can expect varied availability for leisure and recreation venues, with some facilities remaining open for visitors while others may observe the holiday by closing.

Parks and Museums

Most public parks usually remain open during Memorial Day, providing a space for picnics, walks, and family gatherings. However, visitors should check for any special events or closures specific to the holiday. National parks may also be open and could be busier than usual due to the long weekend.

For those interested in cultural outings, museums may vary regarding Memorial Day operations. It’s advisable to confirm the open status of a museum before planning a visit, as some may close while others operate on a regular schedule or offer special Memorial Day programming.

Movie Theaters

Movie theaters are typically open on Memorial Day, often releasing blockbuster films to coincide with the holiday weekend. Ticket availability is subject to demand, so booking in advance is recommended for those wishing to catch a new release.

Emergency Services

In recognition of Memorial Day, certain services and institutions have modified operations, but emergency services maintain functionality to ensure public safety and health.


Hospitals remain operational on Memorial Day, as they provide critical care around the clock, every day of the year. Emergency rooms will be open to address any immediate medical needs.

Fire and Police Departments

Both fire departments and police departments do not close for Memorial Day. They continue to provide their essential services, ensuring that the community receives prompt response in case of emergencies.

Educational Institutions

Memorial Day sees a widespread closure of educational institutions as the nation pays homage to the fallen military personnel.


  • Public and Private K–12 Schools: They typically close on Memorial Day.
  • Colleges and Universities: Most postpone classes in observance of the holiday.


  • Public Libraries: Expect closures across the board for all public library branches.
  • University Libraries: These may vary; some might be open with limited hours, while others stay closed.

Restaurants and Food Services

On Memorial Day, diners will find a selection of restaurants open to serve them, though their hours may vary. Here is a summary of restaurant availability:

Chain Restaurants:

  • Many will maintain regular hours, with select locations possibly operating on a reduced schedule. Patrons are encouraged to verify with their local branches.

Fast-Food Outlets:

  • Outlets like In-N-Out Burger will welcome customers on Memorial Day, though again, hours may differ by location.

Independent Restaurants:

  • They tend to have varied approaches, with some choosing to close for the holiday. Interested guests should contact the restaurants directly for specific hours.

Club Stores with Eateries:

  • For instance, Sam’s Club cafés will allow early access at 8 a.m. for Plus members, with general store hours ending at 6 p.m.

General Suggestions:

  • Checking online or calling ahead is advised to confirm individual restaurant hours.
  • With Memorial Day being a federal holiday, be prepared for some establishments to remain closed or offer limited services.

Remember, whether a restaurant is open or not can also depend on local regulations and the chain’s policy. The provided information aims to serve as a general guideline and may not reflect the status of every food service provider.


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