Category Archives: Today’s Holiday

Pilgrimage of Our Lady of Valme

The Romeriá (pilgrimage) of Our Lady of Valme involves a cross-country pilgrimage. The image of Our Lady of Valme is kept in the parish church of Dos Hermanas, but on this day she is carried in an elaborate procession to the shrine of Valme, on a hill overlooking Seville, Spain. The cart bearing the statue of the Virgin Mary is drawn by oxen with gilded horns. The pilgrims walk behind, and it takes about three hours to reach the sanctuary. Everyone rushes inside, and the mass begins. Afterwards, there is dancing, singing and drinking until sunset, when the image is escorted back to Dos Hermanas. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Georgia Peanut Festival

A harvest festival paying tribute to Georgia’s top crop is held in Sylvester, the Peanut Capital of the World—more peanuts are produced in the region around Sylvester than anywhere else in the state. This festival, which comes at the end of the peanut harvest time, began in 1964. Events of the festival include a beauty pageant to choose a Little Miss Peanut, Junior Miss Peanut, and Georgia Peanut Queen; a peanut-recipe contest for school children; clogging exhibitions; a kiddy parade and a grand parade with floats, horses, antique cars, and people dressed as peanuts. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Dusshera

During the 10 days of Dussehra, scenes from the epic poem Ramayana are enacted. The epic tells the story of Lord Rama who wins the lovely Sita for his wife, only to have her carried off by evil 10-headed Ravana, demon king of Lanka. Ultimately, Rama slays Ravana, and the forces of good triumph over evil. The dramatizations with music, held throughout northern India, are considered at their best in Delhi. On the 10th day, immense effigies of Ravana, his brother, and his son (all of them stuffed with firecrackers) explode in dramatic bursts of flame and noise. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

The United Nations named October 17 the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty in 1992. In doing so, the U.N. followed the lead of some non-governmental organizations that had already dedicated the day to promoting awareness of the plight of the extremely poor. The U.N. observance focuses especially on the needs of the destitute in developing countries. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Festa da Luz

The two-week Festival of Light held every year in Belém, Pará State, Brazil, honors Our Lady of Nazareth. Her image is carried through the streets to the cathedral on Saturday night in a berlinda or glass enclosure set upon wheels. Behind comes the “Miracle Car”—a heavy platform inscribed with images of the miracles performed by the Virgin—carried on the shoulders of strong men who perform this service as a form of penance. The pilgrimage that accompanies the Festival of Light dates back to the year 1700. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Boone Festival

Held annually in Barbourville, Kentucky, this festival honors the frontiersman Daniel Boone (1734-1820), who in 1775 carved a trail through the Appalachian Mountains from eastern Tennessee to the Ohio River. An important part of the festival is the signing of the Cherokee Cane Treaty, which provides the Cherokee people with cane that they use to make baskets. Other festival events include an old-fashioned barbecue featuring pioneer and American-Indian foods, a long-rifle shoot, and competitions such as hog-calling, wood-chopping, and fiddling. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Eo e Emalani i Alaka i Festival

This annual outdoor celebration takes place on the second Saturday in October in Koke’e State Park, Kaua’i, Hawaii. It is a joyous commemoration of the journey of Queen Emma Naea Rooke in 1871 to the upper reaches of Kilohana Viewpoint. At the festival, a woman from the Halau and an entourage re-enacts Queen Emma’s entrance to the mountain meadow, where they are greeted by hula dancers who offer ancient chants and special dances to the party. The day’s activities also include demonstrations of local crafts, including lauhala (fan and matt) weaving and Ni’ihau shell lei-making. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is one of the world’s largest gatherings of hot-air balloonists. More than 1,000 balloons, some more than six-stories high, present dizzying colors and designs in the skies of New Mexico for a nine-day fiesta between the first two weekends of October that attracts nearly a million spectators. Besides the daytime ascensions, illuminated balloons light up the night skies. The fiesta also boasts fireworks and food of all sorts. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary

Founding of the Workers' Party of North Korea

The founding of the ruling Workers’ Party of North Korea is marked as a national holiday throughout the country. The main public celebrations of the Founding of the Workers’ Party take place in the capital city of Pyongyang. Commemorative dance and song performances, evening galas, and oratorical meetings all can be elements of the holiday observance. Similar speeches and performances also are featured in towns and cities throughout the country. Discuss

Source: The Free Dictionary