Fun New Years’ Eve Trraditions from All Around the World
Be more active. Eat less junk food. Spend more time reading books and less time on social media. These are some popular modern-day New Year resolutions, but where did the practice of making resolutions come from and how did this all start? Historians will often say this harkens back some 4000 years ago when the Babylonians would celebrate the spring equinox by planting a new harvest and making ‘promises’ to the gods in exchange for good luck. A bit of spiritual bartering if you will. Today’s resolutions however are purely an opportunity to start fresh, and whether those are personal motivations or a chance to acknowledge cultural traditions, there’s really no wrong way to celebrate New Year’s Eve. So while you start planning your amazing outfit and New Year’s Eve party, make sure to keep in mind some of these fun traditions from around the world, to welcome your guests and 2023 with abundance, good fortune, and positivity. Keep reading for our favorite tasty NYE traditions from around the world
No matter what, when, how or why, traditions everywhere and for everything always have a food component, so what better place to start than eating and drinking.
Eat Lucky Food
- If you live in the South you are no stranger to eating black-eyed peas and pork for NYE – both of which foretell good fortune.
- In Mexico, it is common for families to gather together to make homemade tamales, and then hand them out as gifts to loved ones on New Year’s Day.
- In Japan, people welcome the new year by eating soba noodles. Soba noodles are made from the buckwheat plant, which is known to be a very resilient plant. The eating of the soba is meant to represent the strength of the plant and the long life of the long noodle.
- Celebrate with cake, as they do in Norway and Denmark with Kransekake. This traditional ringed cake is often made with at least 18 layers stacked tall. Picture this sugary delight with layers of thick chewy cookies, held together with flavored icing and toppings galore.
- For the Jewish New Year of Rosh Hashanah people eat apples dipped in honey meant to represent a healthy and sweet year ahead.
- In Spain, tradition says that if you eat 12 grapes before the strike of midnight, you will have good luck for all 12 months of the coming year.
- *PRO TIP*
- Spice this tradition up a little bit for your NYE guests, by soaking these grapes in either white or red wine ahead of time. Throw those bad boys in the freezer the night before, and use them for wine or sangria ice cubes during your party. Guests can enjoy them frozen or thawed, they are great either way!
Have a Drink
- Spain just really has this New Years’ thing figured out, as it is common to serve party guests Cava (a sparkling white wine) is for making toasts. Some versions of this tradition include dropping gold into the Cava, which is meant to symbolize wealth and good fortune. We like Spanish traditions at Toast of the Town!
- For those truly dedicated to their resolutions, follow the tradition of drinking your wishes like they do in Russia. The practice includes writing down your new year’s resolutions, lighting them on fire, collecting the ashes, pouring them into a glass of champagne and slurping it down right at midnight.
- Celebrate like in Scotland where the first guest after midnight brings the whisky. Known as Hogmanay, the tradition recognizes the first guest in the door after the clock strikes to be known as the “first footer”, and is a symbol of the year ahead. This guest is meant to bring gifts to symbolize a prosperous year. Might just have to play it safe and tell everyone to bring whisky, just in case they arrive late 😉
Eat AND Drink
Ok all these traditions are great, but we think we’ll have to give to France on this one, as they made their own separate holiday as part of New Year’s Eve, called ‘le réveillon de la Saint-Sylvestre” which translates to ‘awakening of St. Sylvestre, the patron saint of the New Year’. Celebrating le réveillon de la Saint-Sylvestre” pretty much involves all of the above and then some – eating, drinking, dancing, party-hopping and kissing. Oh, France – we knew we loved you! The drink is typically champagne, and then more champagne. The food is a decadent feast with fresh seafood such as lobster, oysters, and caviar, plus includes other delicacies such as foie gras, gourmet cheeses and meats, and the list goes on. Make sure to gather with friends, dress up and go out, light fireworks, party hop around town, and enjoy life. Just be careful to not overdo it or you will end up with a Gueule de Bois..the French word for a hangover.
Looking for more inspiration for your epic New Years Eve party? Contact our event pros today for more design ideas, recipe suggestions, decor lookbooks, and more at 907.302.2323 or visit us online at www.toastofthetownak.com