If you thought a “jubilee” was some sort of questionable retro dessert made with jello and ominous floating fruit, same. But incorrect, apparently! At least when it comes to the British royal family, which truly loves themselves a jubilee. Can’t get enough of them. And this summer, the Queen is celebrating her Platinum Jubilee.
So What Is a Jubilee, You Ask?
Basically, the royals are throwing a giant party to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s 70th anniversary on the throne. But this is actually just the latest of many jubilees Her Majesty has enjoyed over the years. Let’s see, she had her Silver Jubilee in 1977, her Golden Jubilee in 2002, and her Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
The Platinum Jubilee is a particularly huge deal—though please note that technically the Queen hit her 70 year anni on February 6, 2022. However, the Jubilee is being celebrated in more seasonable weather, when doing things like standing on a balcony for endless amounts of time while people cheer at you is more pleasant.
What Is the Jubilee Schedule?
First of all, it’s a “bank holiday,” which basically means everyone in the U.K. gets four day weekend from June 2 to June 4. Jealous/bitter, but we might as well find out what we’re missing out on:
Thursday, June 2
Trooping the Colour is going down! This is the major event of the weekend and is technically the Queen’s annual birthday parade—which is different from the Jubilee, just taking place at the same time. (She has a lot of things to celebrate, okay!) Anyway, we have a whole explanation of what it means for the color to be trooped over this way, but it’s basically a display of military pageantry on horseback.
Trooping the Colour (color? IDK, help) also involves the royals’ annual balcony appearance, which has become somewhat controversial and dramatic due to constant stress and angst over who stands where and who gets invited. This year, the Queen will be joined only by working members of the royal family, which means Meghan Markle and Prince Harry (who are flying to the U.K. for the Platinum Jubilee) won’t be in attendance.
While on the balcony, the royals will basically stand there, wave, look fancy, have their body language analyzed excessively, and stare at a bunch of planes flying by. And that’s pretty much it for Thursday, though apparently some celebratory beacons will also be lit, including something called “The Tree of Trees,” a particularly fancy beacon that’ll be lit during a “special ceremony” at Buckingham Palace. Okay!
Friday, June 3
Friday is the Queen’s Service of Thanksgiving, which sounds delicious and like it should involve turkey but actually involves the royals sitting in a church together. Scratch that, sitting at St Paul’s Cathedral together. While there, the largest bell in the country will be dramatically RUNG, which we can all agree is a huge moment for bells, as a brand. The entire royal family is expected to attend this event, so Meghan and Harry will presumably be right there with them.
Saturday, June 4
The royals are attending the Derby, so expect an onslaught of massive hats! After that good time, there will be a Platinum Party at the Palace—which will air live on BBC.
This sounds pretty fancy and could be an occasion (just speculating here) where we see royals like Kate Middleton and Meghan bust out tiaras, so stay tuned. Oh, and apparently “famous faces from the world of entertainment” will perform (so…gonna assume royal BFFs Ed Sheeran and Ellie Goulding).
Sunday, June 5
This day is all about food, specifically, lunch. People will be having Platinum Jubilee lunches all over the country (and internationally), and then there will be a pageant involving the “regal gold carriage.” Which apparently involves “a fabulous surprise?” Plus, “national treasures” and “much loved celebrity names” will be there, so I fully expect to see Cher, Céline Dion, and Britney Spears to show up in this thing:
That’s all! Looking forward to seeing this all go down in a few weeks!
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