Archive for the ‘Festivals’ Category

Why is Mardi Gras Called Fat Tuesday?

Why is Mardi Gras Called Fat Tuesday?
One of the special events celebrated in European and American regions, Mardi Gras pertains to exciting, interesting and enjoyable activities held a day before Ash Wednesday. Some of the cities in the world that are popular for celebrating this event are Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, New Orleans in Louisiana as well as Sydney in Australia. Different activities are organized at this time like cultural presentations, feasts and carnival parades. Mardi Gras literally means Shrove Tuesday to French. To extend our understanding on this celebration, it is best to know the various reasons why most people refer to Mardi Gras as Fat Tuesday. Reasons Why is Mardi Gras called Fat Tuesday? Mardi Gras is held a day before the start of Lent season. Eating excessive amount of food is prohibited during the season....

Why Do We Eat Turkey on Thanksgiving?

Why Do We Eat Turkey on Thanksgiving?
It’s a time honored tradition but the reasons why we eat turkey at Thanksgiving is still a matter of dispute. To get an idea of the tradition’s origin, knowing the history of this feast is necessary. Beginnings During the period from 1619 to 1620, the Pilgrims residing in Plymouth, Massachusetts experienced severe food shortages. It was brought about by poor weather and unstable food supplies. To overcome the problem they turned to the Native Americans. The Indians taught the Pilgrims how to farm. A Gift from the Native Americans The famine ended in 1621. To show their gratitude the Pilgrims held a feast in 1621. The Native Americans were invited. They brought along with them some turkey. Based on this tradition, the reason why we eat turkey at Thanksgiving stemmed from the gifts given...

Why Do We Celebrate Independence Day?

Why Do We Celebrate Independence Day?
Definitely one of the much-awaited holidays in the U.S., this festive celebration is marked by colorful fireworks displays, inspiring political speeches and entertaining music concerts. Add to that, it is also one of the nicest times for families, relatives and friends to spend some quality time together and hold special activities like picnics and barbecues. For those who wish to know why people celebrate Independence Day, it is best to look at U.S. history and learn the various important aspects behind this special celebration. The Importance of Independence Day Why do we celebrate Independence Day? The primary purpose of celebrating this special day is to commemorate the so-called independence of the United States from what was once known as the United Kingdom of Great Britain....

Why Do People Throw Beads at Mardi Gras?

Why Do People Throw Beads at Mardi Gras?
Whether it’s in Brazil or New Orleans carnival time usually means frolicking and partying in the streets. By studying the traditions of Mardi Gras, you’ll come to understand its roots. Bead Throwing Bead throwing actually began in the 1920s. The krewe were in charge of the parades. Moving across the streets, they would hurl cheap beads at the crowds. The practice caught on, and today it has become an integral part of carnival festivities. Most of the time beads thrown are made of glass, but nowadays some use plastic or other material. Flashing of Breasts Another common feature are women flashing their breasts. This actually has its roots in Roman practices. During the Lupercalla feast it was customary for the high priests to throw animal skin at women whom they came across. According...

Why Do We Celebrate Halloween?

Why Do We Celebrate Halloween?
The origin of Halloween is still a matter of debate. But the belief of most is that it had something to do with the Celtic festivals in ancient Europe. The Celtic Druid Samhain Festival The Celts had two important deities, the sun god and the god of the dead. The latter’s day was celebrated on November 1. This was also the first day of the New Year. The festival was called Samhain. Even when the Roman Empire ruled, the festival was maintained. As was usually the case in the Empire, the Celtic elements were mixed with those of Roman myths. This included the worship of Pomona, goddess of fruits. It’s been pointed out that the origin of Halloween customs like bobbing for apples came from this Celtic / Roman fusion. The Festival in Christian Europe The custom in early Christian Europe was...