MONDAY, APRIL 6: Roll those leftover Easter eggs and bring the leftovers from your holiday dinner out of the ‘fridge, because Easter Monday is a holiday in several countries of the world. The second day of the octave of Easter Week, Easter Monday condenses what used to be an entire week of celebrations into a single day.
Activities are abundant on Easter Monday: At the White House in Washington, D.C., the First Family hosts the annual Easter Egg Roll; in Australia, Easter Monday is a public holiday and Sydney hosts a famous parade; in the UK, a plethora of events—such as the Cadbury Easter Egg Trail—are offered; and in Poland and New York, Dyngus Day festivities charge up old-fashioned customs. In the Republic of Ireland, citizens remember the men and women who died in the Easter Rising, which began on Easter Monday of 1916.
137TH WHITE HOUSE EASTER EGG ROLL
This year, the Obama family will host the 137th annual White House Easter Egg Roll, with the theme “Gimme Five,” in honor of the fifth anniversary of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! initiative. Upward of 35,000 guests will participate in the egg roll and egg hunt, sport and fitness zones, storytelling and cooking demos. (View the official 2015 Obama family Easter photo, here.) The 2015 White House Keepsake Eggs will feature, along with the stamped signatures of the President and First Lady, the “paw prints” of Bo and Sunny. In addition, this year, Live with Kelly and Michael will present its first full, live broadcast from the White House, airing live from the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden outside the East Wing of the White House.
A BELOVED POLISH TRADITION
In Poland, Central Europe and in Polish communities worldwide, customs related to Dyngus Day are more popular than ever. From the Polish Smigus-Dyngus (Wet Monday), Easter Monday has long been reserved for dousing girls with water and swatting them with pussy willows; the following day, girls have their revenge on the boys. (Wikipedia has details.) The world’s largest organized Dyngus Day celebration takes place each year in Buffalo, New York, where attendees dress in red and white—the colors of the Polish flag—and watch the famous parade. (Check out the official site.) This year, tens of thousands are expected in Buffalo to dance to the music of polka bands, eat Polish food and toast one another in Polish-owned bars. Activities also flourish in Chicago, Cleveland, Hamtramck, Michigan and South Bend, Indiana.