It’s That Time Of The Year, Again

It is the German tradition to eat pork and sauerkraut on New Year’s Day to bring good luck for the coming year.  Usually, this meal is served with the wonderful addition of mashed potatoes.  Yum.

Thank goodness we survived the last 8 years of the Bush/Cheney reign of terror.  Hopefully, we as a nation can move forward to better times and leave the regressive Republicans behind.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

And now for a little mummery…

Some history:

The tradition of Philadelphia Mummery started in the late 17th century as a continuation of the Old World customs of ushering in the New Year. Mummery in America is as unique to Philadelphia as Mardi Gras is to New Orleans. For example, the Swedes were Philadelphia’s first settlers. When they came to Tinicum, just outside of Philadelphia, they brought their custom of visiting friends on “Second Day Christmas”, December 26. Later they extended their period of celebration to include New Year’s Day, and welcomed the New Year with masquerades and parades of noisy revelers. Most people carried firearms for protection in those early days of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and it did not take long before pistols and muskets joined with bells and noisemakers to create the sound of a New Year. Those who “shot in” the New Year became New Year’s Shooters, and thus the name much later evolved to officially become the New Year’s Shooters and Mummers Association. Groups would travel from house to house, sing songs, and perform dances — all to be rewarded with food and drink.

By the 1870’s, what had been an uncoordinated group of neighborhood celebrations turned into an area-wide parade with two main groups of participants: Fancy Dress and Comic clubs.  The City of Philadelphia finally sponsored and organized the first official Mummers Parade on January 1, 1901.

And more about the mummers as:  http://www.phillymummers.com/history.htm

The best part of the mummers parade is being there and watching it LIVE.

I’ve shared some of the local traditions of southeastern Pennsylvania.  What are your traditions for starting the New Year?

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9 thoughts on “It’s That Time Of The Year, Again”

  1. Cats, a very hearty, happy, and healthy new year to you. I truly hope 2009 is a banner year for you in every way.

  2. Happy New Year! Thanks for a kicking Blog and I am with you on leaving the Bushbaby and Chain behind in 2008, they were such a drag on America’s reputation, image and moral authority.
    They were right about Mad Bob Mugabe in Zimbabwe, though. But still, that’s no reason for destroying a Superpower.

    P.S. just noticed the snowflakes on your blog: is it snowing in Penn?

  3. Denford – no snow today. It’s too cold snow 🙂 The picture on the header is the view outside my kitchen door and was taken several years ago during a snow storm. The falling snow on the blog will magically disappear after January 4th when WordPress takes away this extra option.

    Thanks to everyone that has stopped by PA 4 Change. It’s been a roller coaster year, to say the least.

  4. Yes, sauerkraut, pork, mashed potatoes and dumplings! Here in Maine, not many people partake of this delicious meal. We used to live near Chambersburg and Erie. Born and raised in PA and love this tradition.

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