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Wednesday Apr 08, 2009

Happy Easter!

Easter Traditions in USA

Easter is a major religious festival of Christians that is celebrated in a grand manner with a big party time celebration. Every nation has its own way of celebrating a particular festivity. Every country has some peculiar traditions and customs. For example it is the tradition of America to conduct special Easter parades, where men and women flaunt their special costumes and colorful bonnets. The person who leads the parade can be spotted holding an Easter candle or cross in his/her hand. It is interesting to explore facts about Easter traditions in USA. Read further to know about Easter celebration in America…
Here are some USA Easter customs:
  • In the New Orleans, it is a trend of conducting an annual pre-Easter carnival called 'Mardi Gras', which features lot of fun activities like parade, jazz music bands and a bumper party.
  • A must play Easter game for American kids is Easter egg roll.
  • A special dish for Easter springtime in USA is baked ham, potatoes and vegetables. Another most demanding recipe is hot cross buns.
  • It was in the early 1700's, when for the first time, eggs were dyed in America and the credit for starting this practice can be attributed to Pennsylvania Dutch (German) settlers.
  • As a part of Easter traditions in the US, sunrise services are held and the prime motive is to include various Christian religious groups in this event.
  • Painting the Easter eggs and then conducting Easter egg hunt games for the kids is what most American parents do on the Easter week.

Easter Traditions Around the World:

In England, as a part of Easter tradition, people eat hams. So as to glorify the resurrection of Lord Jesus, people in Britain host special parades. Churches are adorned with lovely lilies. As a part of party time celebration, dance performances take place for which the Morris dancers are invited. In small town, pancake races are held. People dance to the tune of Easter springtime songs and enjoy themselves.
The history of Greece traces back far past the beginnings of Christianity, but from the very earliest days of the Christian faith the Islands of Greece and the Greek people have embraced these beliefs and made them part of the Greek heritage. Of all the Christian feast days, Easter is the greatest time for foods, feasting and celebration to people in the Greek Orthodox faith. At midnight the church bells toll as the priests announce Christós Anésti...Christ is Risen! Fireworks are set off, in some areas gunshots are fired and the each person in the crowd answers with the joyous responses of Alithós Anésti - Truly He is risen and Alithinós O Kírios - True is The Lord. The people leave the churches and crowded squares and make their ways to homes of friends and relatives. The candles they carry are placed in each home and burn through the night to symbolize the Light returned to the world. Celebrations continue with the cracking of eggs and The Resurrection Table. Each person takes an egg and challengers attempt to crack each others' eggs. The breaking of the eggs is meant to symbolize Christ breaking from the Tomb. The person whose egg lasts the longest is assured good luck for the rest of the year.
In Germany, Easter commences on the Good Friday with the draping of cross. It is on this day, people eat fish as a part of a fast.  In the menu of special Easter lunch on the Easter Sunday, colored Easter eggs and lamb shaped cake acquire prominent positions. In the sweets, people relish the cookies and chocolate candies.  To give a warm welcome to the spring season, there is a tradition of burning the old Christmas trees in a specially chosen venue.  Green colored Easter eggs are used on the Maundy Holy Thursday. In the Oberammergau town of Germany, passion play is held which is based on the life of Jesus Christ. It's a play in which about 1200 villagers participate and the play is a real long one, extending up to six hours.  Before the start of Lent season, a special carnival called Fasching is held. Its major attractions include a parade in which people showoff their masks. Kids light huge bonfires on the Easter eve. German people prepare a special recipe called Cruller, which is a kind of thick doughnut. 

Australia has a different style of celebrating the Easter festivity. There are certain things that are specific to Australia. To say for example, in major part of Northern hemisphere, Easter bunny has a special importance related to Easter festivity. In fact, it is considered to be one of the most important symbols of Easter. But in Australia, Easter bunny is said to have a bad history of destroying the vegetable crops and owing to this, the Aussie people have found another alternative Easter symbol, namely Bilby. Easter traditions in Australia are truly unique. In Australia, Easter is celebrated in the autumn season unlike other Northern hemisphere countries, where Easter falls in the springtime. The specialty of Easter in Australia lies in the hosting of a unique agricultural show in Sydney known as "the Royal Easter Show", where the nation's best produce is exhibited. It also consists of displays of farm animals. Other highlights include firework, hosting of parades, joy rides, delicious food and other fun activities for kids. In Australia, instead of the rabbit, Bilby is considered to be one of the major symbols associated with Easter festivity. The reason of bunny rabbit being replaced by Bilby is that, the bunny rabbit is reported to have destroyed agricultural crops.


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