Tag Archives: Holidays

Holiday Storytime Schedule!

Their will be no Story Times with Miss Karen December 23rd, 2013 – January 3, 2014. The normal story time schedule will resume Monday, January 6, 2014!

Have a very happy holidays!

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April Fools’ Day – April 1, 2013

Just around the corner is one of the funniest days of the year! April Fools’ Day! But where did such a silly holiday come from? Let’s find out!

April Fools’ Day is celebrated in the U.S. and many other countries on April 1st. It is also called All Fools’ Day or “April Fish!” in Italy, France and Belgium (because of the game of trying to attach a paper fish to a person’s back without them knowing). It is not a national holiday, but many people celebrate it throughout their day by playing harmless jokes on family, coworkers, classmates, teachers, and friends.

There are many theories on where the holiday got it’s start. It could have originated from the ancient Roman festival of Hilaria, which was held around March 25th. Or, possibly, the Medieval Festival of Fools held on December 28th. Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, which was published around 1392, mentions a story dealing with April Fools’ Day. Some scholars believe that the date Chaucer mentioned is May 2nd. Other scholars believe that his story has been misinterpreted and that the actual date is April 1st. On the Persian Calendar there is a special holiday, Sizdah Bedar, that occurs around April 1st or 2nd, and this may be the true origins of this silly holiday. No matter what country, or version of events you may believe, what is true is that in almost every country in the world there is a special day dedicated to pranks, humor, and fun. 

Have some fun this April 1st, and have a very happy April Fools’ Day!

April Fools Day - Spongebob

 

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St. Patrick’s Day – March 17th

Named after one of the patron saints of Ireland, Saint Patrick, this holiday which is celebrated on March 17th was originally meant to commemorate Saint Patrick and the arrival of Christianity to Ireland. Throughout the years it has turned more public, becoming a day of celebration of Irish heritage and culture. 

SAINT PATRICK

Saint Patrick

Saint Patrick

Saint Patrick was born into a wealthy Roman British family in c. AD 385. At the age of 16 he was kidnapped by the “wild” Irish raiders and became a slave in Ireland. According to Patrick, he was told by God, in a dream, to run to the coast and escape on a ship back to his home. Upon his return he entered the priesthood and began his studies.

In 432, God again spoke to Patrick, this time telling him to return to Ireland. Patrick, now a bishop, was to bring Christianity to the pagan, “heathen” Irish. Over the next 30 years Patrick practiced his evangelism in Ireland, he died on March 17, 461.  

CELEBRATIONS

St. Patrick's Day Parade - Syracuse, NY 2013

St. Patrick’s Day Parade – Syracuse, NY 2013

Americans have been celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day since the late 18th century. However as early as the 9th and 10th centuries, groups of Irish in Europe were celebrating in their own ways. In the 1600’s the church put the holiday, officially, on their calendars. It became a public holiday in Ireland in 1903. 

Originally, blue was the color associated with St. Patrick. But, over the years, green has taken over. “The wearing of the green” means to wear a shamrock on one’s person. This symbol of St. Patrick is based on an Irish folk legend. It states that St. Patrick explained the Holy Trinity to the Irish by using the Shamrock. This little green plant has become the symbol of not only the holiday, but of the whole Irish nation. 

Throughout the world countries hold parades, parties, and festivals that can last a single day to almost two weeks. Depending on the amount of Irish who may live in a nation or area depends on how intense and outrageous the celebrations can get. Here, in Syracuse, we have many different dates and celebrations that culminate on March 17th! 

Luck of the Irish to ye! Hope you have a very happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day

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Memorial Day – May 28, 2012

Memorial Day is just a couple of days away. This national holiday occurs the last Monday in May. This holiday, originally, was a day to remember all the Union soldiers who had died during the Civil War, but over the years it has come to encompass those who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces.

The First Memorial Day-like remembrance and celebration was likely held in Charleston, South Carolina at the Washington Race Course on May 1, 1865. This was the site of a large Union soldier graveyard. Freed slaves held a parade, sang songs, and honored those that had died in order for them to be free. They then held races, picnics, and listened to speeches.

Memorial Day at Arlington Cemetery

There are many official and unofficial traditions associated with Memorial Day. Many families visit cemeteries and gravesites of deceased family members. People visit local memorials and sites of remembrance. You often see the American flag at half-staff from dawn until noon. One of the biggest traditions, however, is attending local parades and then going to neighborhood or family barbeques.

Memorial Day is not only a day of remembrance, it is also the unofficial beginning of the summer vacation season. I hope that you have a fantastic Memorial Day weekend and that your summer is full of fun, family and friends!

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!

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