Friday, January 6, 2012

Epiphany, Cuddle Up Day, Shortbread Day, more

January 6th, 2012, is Epiphany, Twelfth Day, Three Kings Day, El Dia de los Tres Reyes, La Fiesta de Reyes, El de los Reyes Magos, Dreikonigendag, Race of the Three Kings, Cuddle Up Day, Hornschlittenrennen, Haxey Hood, Svyat Vechir, National Smith Day, World Day for War Orphans, Army Day (Iraq), National Bean Day, and National Shortbread Day.

Epiphany celebrates the three wise men and their visit with baby Jesus; the day also marks the end of the Christmas season. Some choose to celebrate the holiday on the Sunday following, which is January 8th in 2012. Epiphany goes by many other names, including Twelfth Day,Three Kings Day, El Dia de los Tres Reyes, La Fiesta de Reyes, El de los Reyes Magos, and Dreikonigendag.

The Race of the Three Kings in San Pablo, Peru, determines the fate of the village for the coming year. Depending on which king wins, the village will win a year of good harvests, a good year for animals and pasture, or simply money.

Cuddle Up Day is a time to, well, cuddle up. What more is there to say?

Hornschlittenrennen, or "horn runners race," is a German race involving four-person teams careening over ice on ancient peasant sleighs.

Haxey Hood, an old tradition in England, involves teams racing to push a leather tube to a local pub.

Svyat Vechir is Christmas Eve in Ukraine. The holiday table is set with two tablecloths - one for family ancestors, one for the living.

National Smith Day honors everyone named Smith. January 6th is the birth date of Captain John Smith, who helped settle the colony at Jamestown, Virginia.

On World Day for War Orphans, consider the horrible price paid by children around the world in times of war, when parents become casualties and children face a sad and uncertain future.

Iraq observes Army Day on January 6th.

National Bean Day is the perfect opportunity to prepare a huge pot of chili or bean soup.

On National Shortbread Day, enjoy a delicious, sweet, crumbly, classic cookie.

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