Archive | December 2009

New Years Facts and Traditions


The first New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square happened in 1907

The Jewish New Year is called Rosh Hoshana

Auld Lang Syne means time gone by

The largest annual New Year’s Eve celebrations happens in Sydney Australia

More than 80,000 fireworks are set off from the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Hogmanay is the celebration of the new years Scottish style

The centenary clock is lowered at 23:59:48 on new years eve in Madrid Spain

Tournament of Roses it the most popular New Year’s Day parade

Pasadena’s Valley hunt clubs first tournament of roses parade took place in 1890

New York’s Waterford crystal ball weighs 1,070 pounds

In Flagstaff Arizona a pine cone dropped on New Year’s eve

Bangor Main drops a purple beach ball decorated with Christmas lights

In Seattle, the New Years countdown done with an elevator

The Chinese New Year is known as the Lunar New Year or the Spring Festival

Apples and Honey are eaten to symbolize a sweet new year in Rosh Hashanah

Thailand celebrates from April 13 to 15 by throwing water

In the ancient Roman calendar the new year began on March 1st

The first new year holiday observed was celebrated in Babylon about 4000 years ago

The baby was first used to symbolize the New Year in Greece around 600 BC

In Colombia, Cuba and Puerto Rico families stuff a life-size male doll with things that have bad memories or sadness associated with them, and then dress it up in old clothes from each family member. At the stroke of midnight, ‘Mr. Old Year’ is set on fire.

In Spain people eat 12 grapes as the clock strikes midnight (one each time the clock chimes) on New Year’s Eve

In Japan, Buddhist temple bells are rung 108 times at midnight

In Brazil people wear white clothes on New Year’s Eve to bring good luck and peace for the year to follow

In Greece children leave their shoes by the fireside on New Year’s Day in hopes that Saint Basil will come and fill their shoes with gifts.

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2010 Color of the Year

turqoise lily

Pantone has just announced PANTONE 15-5519 Turquoise, an inviting, luminous hue, as the Color of the Year for 2010. Combining the serene qualities of blue and the invigorating aspects of green, Turquoise inspires thoughts of soothing, tropical waters and a comforting escape from the everyday troubles of the world, while at the same time restoring our sense of wellbeing.

In many cultures, Turquoise is believed to be a protective talisman, a color of deep compassion and healing, and a color of faith and truth, inspired by water and sky. Through years of color word-association studies, we also find that to many people, Turquoise represents an escape, taking them to a tropical paradise that is pleasant and inviting – even if it is only a fantasy.

Whether envisioned as a tranquil ocean surrounding a tropical island or a protective stone warding off evil spirits, Turquoise is a color that most people respond to positively. It is universally flattering, has appeal for men and women, and translates easily to fashion and interiors. With both warm and cool undertones, Turquoise pairs nicely with any other color in the spectrum. Turquoise adds a splash of excitement to neutrals and browns, complements reds and pinks, creates a classic maritime look with deep blues, livens up all other greens, and is especially trend-setting with yellow-greens.

For more information read the Panetone press release here:

To view the archives for Past Colors of the Year visit the News page and click on the TRENDS Section:

Even More Christmas Facts

 Christmas, celebrated the world over has a long and interesting history. Here are a few more facts about Christmas from wence it began


• The story of Jesus Christ’s birth is told in New Testament’s gospel of Saint Luke and Saint Matthew.

• Some Christians celebrate Jesus Christ’s coming on January 6, the Epiphany, when they believe he was baptized.

• Church officials, “impressed with the ritual’s symbolic bringing back of light into the world,” claimed the date of December 25. Roman Emperor Constantine officially recognized it as the celebration of Jesus’ birth in the 4th century A.D.

• The song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” refers to the 12 days between Christmas and the Epiphany.

• The word Christmas comes from the Old English Cristes maesse, which means Christ’s mass.

• The Middle Ages marked the origin of many traditional Christmas symbols such as the Yule log, holly, and caroling. The burning Yule log (Yule comes from the Scandinavian jol or jul which means “jolly”) symbolized the time in which bonfires raged to “beckon the reappearance of winter’s holy light.”

• The word Xmas is sometimes used instead of Christmas. In Greek, X is the first letter of Christ’s name.

• In the early 19th century, German and Dutch Protestant immigrants resurrected the Christmas holiday to its original status. St. Nicholas also gained prominence during the Victorian era.

• In 1969, the Roman Catholic church dropped St. Nicholas’ Feast Day from its calendar because his life is so unreliably documented.

• The German word Christkindl, which means Christ child, eventually turned into Kriss Kringle.

• Santa Claus generally was depicted as an elf until 1931, when Coca-Cola ads portrayed him as human-sized.

• Rudolph didn’t become Santa’s ninth reindeer until 1939 when an advertising writer for the department store Montgomery Ward created him.

Sources: Encarta 96 Encyclopedia, World Book, Encyclopedia Britanica

Check out the Holiday Tips and Ideas for the History of Santa Claus, Origins of Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa and more here:

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