Every year we welcome in the New Year with many festivities, celebrating and lots of revelries. How much do you know about the origins behind your New Year’s party? Here are some fun facts about New Year’s that we’re betting you didn’t know!
Thank Julius. Julius Caesar was the first one to decide that January 1 would be the first day of the New Year. Interestingly enough, January 1 seems to be a completely random day to choose as there is no real significance or meaning behind this particular day as would be the case for many other annual celebrations. January was chosen to honor the Roman God Janus, the god of new beginnings. The head of Janus traditionally has two faces--one looking backwards, one looking forward toward the future.
It’s Not What You Know. Ancient New Year’s tradition states that whom you hang out with when the New Year begins can make or break the next 365 days when it come to good fortune. Most people choose to celebrate New Year’s with good friends and family, which is said to improve your luck in the upcoming year. Kissing your significant other at midnight is also said to solidify the relationship for the upcoming year.
Eat Lucky. There are certain foods that traditionally spell luck when eaten on New Year's Eve. These fortunate foods include leafy greens for prosperity and various lentils for good fortune. You might want to make sure your New Year’s spread is laden with some of these healthier foods; what have you got to lose?
Sing It, Baby. The most traditional and enduring song to sing at midnight on New Year’s is an old Scottish tune entitled, “Auld Lang Syne”. Do you know the words? If so, you might be one of a very select few people that know the lyrics. The song, written by Robert Burns in the 1700’s is a wistful tune about “the good old days”.
New Year’s Is Old. The tradition of celebrating New Year’s Day can be traced back 4000 years to the time of the ancient Babylonians.
Resolve to Make Resolutions: The tradition of making New Year’s resolutions goes way back to the ancient Babylonians. Today, about 45% of Americans will make New Year’s resolutions. The most popular resolutions include resolving to lose weight, eat healthier, exercise more, quit smoking, budget and save money, and get a better job.
Party! The most popular New Year’s destinations in the United States are Disney World, Las Vegas and of course, New York City. Over one million people will celebrate New Year’s in New York City’s Times Square. The famous ball in Times Square dropped for the first time in 1907, a tradition that was instituted largely because of a ban on fireworks. The ball has dropped every year since, except during 1942 and 1943 because of WWII.
New Year’s Toast! Over 360 million glasses of champagne will be consumed in order to toast in the New Year.
New Year’s Baby: The traditional symbol of New Year’s, Baby New Year, began in Greece in 600 BC. Folklore states that the famous infant will age into an old man during the course of the year.
Random New Year’s Traditions We Love: According to Italian tradition, it’s very important to wear red underwear as you welcome in the New Year. This time-honored custom is said to bring the wearer good luck. Another method of ensuring an entire year of happiness is to consume twelve grapes at midnight--this tradition comes from our Spanish friends. In Switzerland, a New Year’s celebration would not be complete without dropping some ice cream on the floor.
Happy New Year from Your Friends at Halloween Express!