Hello, 2021–Why Do We Celebrate New Year’s Eve?
After the year 2020 has turned out to be, many of us cannot wait to celebrate 2021 and a fresh start. But why do we celebrate New Year’s Eve anyway? Before you pull out your sound makers and confetti poppers, take a look at the history of celebrating New Year’s Eve.
Background of New Year’s Eve
The Gregorian calendar, created by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582, marks the start of the New Year. Adopted in some areas of Europe immediately, the calendar was not used elsewhere for centuries later. In fact, the United Kingdom and the United States didn’t start using the Gregorian calendar until 1752, and actually dropped 11 days.
Celebrations for New Year’s Eve can be traced back to European celebrations before the spread of Christianity. Over time, as beliefs merged together, what resulted became the celebrations for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
While those who follow the Gregorian calendar celebrate on December 31st and January 1st, the New Year is actually celebrated differently in other cultures such as Hindu, Chinese, Coptic, Jewish, and Islamic calendars.
The historical relevance of the celebration is one thing, but what about the traditions that come with it?
New Year’s Eve Traditions Around the World
Ringing in the New Year may look a little differently this year. However, there are still traditions we can adapt from home. In order to help us celebrate 2021, take a look at these New Year’s Eve traditions around the world!
If you are planning for snacks for a night in, be sure to grab a bag of grapes! In Spain, it is customary to eat twelve grapes for each stroke to midnight as a symbol of good luck for each month of the new year.
In 2021, many of us hope to travel once more, so adopt this Columbian tradition of walking around the block with an empty suitcase in hopes of a year of travel and adventure!
Who doesn’t have a little pent up rage they’d like to toss aside into the New Year? In Denmark, families throw old glasses and plates against the wall, banishing bad spirits–just let your family and neighbors know before you start!
Garlic may ward off vampires, but hanging an onion on your door will bring rebirth to you and your family! In Greece, parents hang an onion outside their door on New Year’s Eve, waking their children on New Year’s Day with a tap on the head with the onion.
That last tradition may have been a little stinky, but starting your New Year with Focus Forward will be anything but!
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