In Johannesburg in South Africa, people like to start the year without any unwanted items. Some countries, like Japan and South Korea, ring bells to start the New Year. This is because bears are special according to old Romanian stories and are able to protect and heal people. In Toronto in Canada, it’s in Nathan Phillips Square, while in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, it’s the city’s famous Copacabana beach where the sky is lit up by fireworks.
By the time you read this, almost everyone around the world will have started their new year. In September or October, Jews believe that God opens the Book of Life for 10 days, starting with Rosh Hashanah and ending with Yom Kippur . During these days, the holiest in the Jewish year, Jews try to atone for any wrongdoing and to forgive others. A ram’s horn trumpet, known as the shofar, is blown before and during Rosh Hashanah and at the conclusion of Yom Kippur. York City’s Times Square swarm with crowds of happy, noisy people. The hullabaloo expresses people’s high spirits at holiday time.
Here are some fun ways to celebrate the arrival of the new year at home with the kids. Join in on a joyous rendition of the traditional New Year’s song, just like in all the old movies. In the past, the gift giving season didn’t stop at Christmas!
Nowadays, the tradition is followed by almost every Spaniard, and the twelve grapes have become synonymous with the New Year. After the clock has finished striking twelve, people greet each other and toast with sparkling wine such as cava, champagne or cider. The song “Un año más” by the Spanish group Mecano, is frequently played.
New Year’s Eve is also marked by a national all-night telecast on Romanian Television, which also celebrates its anniversary on this holiday, having opened its doors in the New Year’s Eve of 1956. A common tradition among Greek Orthodox families is the cutting of a vasilopita (“King’s pie” or “St. Basil’s pie”) at midnight. A coin or similar object is usually baked inside, and whoever finds it is said to have luck over the next year. New Year’s Day is considered a feast day for Basil of Caesarea, and it is also considered a custom to reserve the first slice of the vasilopita for St. Basil.