Maypole Information

Review the main components of a May Pole. Most May Poles consist of the basic pole or shaft, something to stabilize it at the bottom, a decorative top, perhaps some decoration along the length of the pole, and possibly ribbons hanging from the top.

Decide what the May Pole means to you and how you want to use it. This will determine how you construct and decorate yours. If you are celebrating the fertility of the earth in pagan fashion, you might want to incorporate appropriate symbolism into your design. If you want to gather people for a May Pole dance, you will want a very sturdy pole with ribbons attached to the top.

Plan for either an indoor or outdoor setting. Location will determine many of your construction choices. Outdoors you can set a pole into the ground and you can work on a fairly large scale. An indoor pole is necessarily smaller and will need some other form of base. A support pole in, for example, already built into a church basement social room makes a very nice indoor May Pole.

Choose and place your pole. A tree trunk, a length of PVC pipe, a large dowel and just about any other suitable item can transform into a May Pole. Set the pole securely. Outdoors you might dig a hole and place the pole like a fence post. Indoors a Christmas tree stand will work nicely. If you are going to do a May Pole dance, you might want to stabilize the tree stand with some concrete blocks.

Select a top piece for the May Pole. Usually these are circular and decorated with flowers. You can use a wire wreath frame and weave real or artificial flowers into it. Other greenery and ribbons are also appropriate. Attaching the top to the pole can be tricky. It works best to attach it so that it swings slightly, by hanging the circular piece from the top of the pole with wire. Fasten the wire with staples, additional wire or nails or screws driven into the pole.

Decorate the pole. If you will host a May Pole dance, you will need ribbons (how many is entirely up to you) that are securely held to the pole. Staples or stout wire work well, as does tying with additional ribbon. Decorate the length of the pole using paints, markers, or whatever works on the surface you have chosen. Bear in mind they represent what you want the May Pole to convey when you decorate.

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