With Easter fast approaching, you might be thinking how to celebrate the Easter Sunday. Different regions have different Easter celebration traditions. For example, in USA, people tend to paint eggs with different colors and designs and hide them in a bunch of random places so they can gorge on candy left by a giant magical rabbit to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. In the Christian tradition, Easter is the day Jesus was resurrected after being crucified and buried. But many Easter traditions today are centered on the arrival of spring, and have been melted with local cultures in different places. This list lays out the top secular celebrations of the first major holiday of spring.
1. Virtuous in Argentina
Easter Sunday in Argentina consists of consuming and sharing eggs as well as the special Easter cake, Rosca de Pascua. Tradition holds that people exchange eggs not only with their family, but also with friends and colleagues and the day culminates in attending mass followed by a big family gathering involving lots of food. Argentinians tend to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection with a huge barbecue and a treasure hunt organized by the local governments in the main cities, so that everyone has a chance to participate.
2. Breaking clay pots in Greece
Corfiots, an island situated off the northwestern coast of Greece, doesn’t exactly follow the traditional Greek Orthodox Church’s Easter traditions. On Holy Saturday, the day before Easter, citizens in the city center drop water-filled clay pots over balconies onto the main streets. This tradition of celebrating by breaking pots goes back to ancient Venetians, who welcomed the New Year in a similar fashion.
3. Ceremonious in Lebanon
Visitors will notice the ornately decorated streets, shops and restaurants filled with all things Easter from bunnies to chocolate, painted eggs and even live baby chicks in some places. Good Friday is marked by mass. Easter Sunday is a huge celebration where absolutely everyone goes to church. After taking communion, the 40-day fast comprising a strictly vegan diet, is broken with a feast featuring lamb and lots of egg breaking. Get your hands on the delicious Easter sweets called Maamoul. These are little cookies made with a mixture of semolina and butter then stuffed with either dates or ground sugared nuts and dusted with icing sugar.
4. Egg Rolling in Scotland
Easter in Scotland is a mostly laid-back event. The Scots do the traditional things commonly associated with Easter like attending mass and having a big meal, but they also add a bit of fun, particularly for the kids. Easter fun here is all about eggs. After they’re boiled and painted in all kinds of colors and designs, they’re taken to the park hills for rolling on Easter Sunday. While it may just sound like playtime for the kids, the event is very symbolic as it is carried out to represent the rolling away of stones on Jesus’ tomb thereby assisting in His resurrection.
5. Seville, Spain
Seville in Andalucia is the most famed Spanish region for Easter celebrations. It has 52 different religious brotherhoods whose members parade through the streets for the entire Holy Week manifesting the crucifixion. Processions continue for almost 24 hours culminating in the jubilation of the resurrection which is observed by floats covered in flowers, dancing in the streets and traditional sweet cakes.
6. All Bells in France
In France, church bells ring every day of the year except for the three days of Easter. Legend has it that the reason the bells stop ringing is because they’ve made a trip to Rome in order to be blessed. On Easter Sunday, the bells make their return and tour the entire country sprinkling chocolate eggs, chickens and rabbits as they go in each and every garden. After midday, children head to the gardens to find their hidden treasures left by the blessed bells. The day of events also includes a hearty meal, normally consisting of lamb, which is the Easter dish of choice in France.
7. Water fights in Poland
What started out as a tradition of playfully sprinkling holy water onto unmarried women has, with time, turned into an all-out water fight that takes place on Easter Monday. It’s a little strange that the water fights take place the day after Easter, when families come together over a massive feast and wish each other health and happiness for the rest of the year. The Polish often have a lamb-shaped centerpiece for their Easter table, in the form of a cake or even butter. They also go all out with the eggs, passing around fried, boiled, halved, and stuffed eggs as an expression of good blessings.
8. United States
Apart from dressing up in one’s Sunday best and heading off to church on Easter Sunday, Easter in the US is, unsurprisingly, dominated by candy and chocolate. Various popular brands release a special line of sweet treats available only for the Easter period including Easter colored M&Ms, jelly beans, malted milk eggs, Cadbury Mini Eggs, Cadbury Creme Eggs, chocolate bunnies, Reese’s eggs, Peeps and Hershey’s miniatures with Easter colored wrappers. Those headed to Washington, DC can enjoy one other very famous tradition where the White House opens its lawn to kids for some Easter egg rolling. This tradition was first carried out in 1878 and has continued ever since. Other attractions on the day include a visit with the Easter Bunny and an afternoon of storytelling.
9. Toy Hunting in Germany
Easter Baskets are the main tradition in Germany where each child receives a basket put together by their parents, containing not only eggs and chocolate, but also toys and other gifts. The baskets are hidden in the back garden and the kids have to hunt for it after church on Easter Sunday. This is particularly popular in rural areas where houses tend to have big gardens, sometimes comprising several levels and full of trees and bushes.
In more urban areas, families tend to go on an Easter walk and hide their Osternest, which means Easter nest, in the forest or a meadow and the kids go hunting for it during the walk. Alternatively, if the nest doesn’t appeal, some families like to hide chocolate eggs along the route of the walk.
10. Easter crime in Norway
Påskekrim, or “Easter crime,” is a tradition in which Norwegians read and consume “crime culture” during Holy Week. This tradition penetrates every channel and mode of communication: bookstores feature crime novels, newspapers run supplementary crime literature, and radio and television channels run crime shows. The connection between crime and Easter is somewhat blurry, but many believe it has to do with an ad placed in the newspaper in 1923 by a publisher promoting his author’s new crime novel. Since the ad appeared as a headline on the front page, fear was evoked in the readers and since then Easter has been associated with crime.