Beltane is a major Pagan festival called a Sabbat. It is the union of the God and Goddess. The word Beltane means ‘Bright Fire’. It is named after the God Bel and ancient Celtic God. It is a fire festival and it is traditional to build a fire on Beltane night to honor the Sun Gods.
Beltane is also a fertility festival, as it is the height of Spring and the beginning of Summer. Earth’s energy is very strong and potent with new life. Beltane is also the start of the farming calendar.
Fire is believed to have purifying qualities, it cleansed and rejuvenated both the land and the people. The ritual welcoming of the sun and the lighting of the fires was also believed to ensure fertility of the land and the people. Animals were transferred from winter pens to summer pastures, and were driven between the Beltane fires to cleanse them of evil spirits and to bring fertility and a good milk yield.
In Celtic times, it would be traditional to build a big bonfire in the center of the village and have a big feast. Young men and women would dance around the maypole, while many people would marry in a handfasting (wedding). People wishing to find love or conceive would jump over a Belfire for luck in love and fertility.
On Beltane we celebrate the abundance of the earth, it is a happy time when we give thanks for all we have in our lives and look forward to the bright, sunny days ahead. We celebrate the coming together of the God and the Goddess and the gifts they will bestow upon the earth.
May you have a happy and joyous Beltane.
Full written & photo credit goes to Wicca Teachings. I merely edited this.