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The Purple Tide

The student news site of Chantilly High School (Chantilly, VA)

The Purple Tide

The student news site of Chantilly High School (Chantilly, VA)

The Purple Tide

Unique New Year’s Eve traditions shared as 2024 approaches

Unique+New+Years+Eve+traditions+shared+as+2024+approaches
Amanda Yesin

Televised cheers erupt as the ball drops in Times Square and a new year begins. The fireworks light up the midnight sky as music sweeps up from above speakers. People have celebrated the beginning of the new year. People have traditions and have developed different traditions throughout history.  

New Year’s has been celebrated since ancient times, according to the History Channel, dating back 4000 years to the Babylonians first new year that was recorded. The Babylonians had a festival that lasted 12 days called Akitu to honor an equal amount of sunlight and darkness which was in late March. 

“What we do is we all put on little hats and play the little noise machines we have to distract my dog,” senior Will Sanfilippo said. “If he gets scared, we go around the house trying to find him and bring him back inside. Afterwards, we sit around and take one of the New Year’s hats and put it on him. It’s kind of funny.” 

New Year’s looks different for different cultures.  For example, freshman Sowyn Jean-Baptiste celebrates New Year’s and Haitian Independence Day on the same day. The Haitians eat Joumou soup, a traditional Haitian dish containing squash and potatoes, as a symbol of freedom and dignity after securing their independence from France. 

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“This tradition has been in my family since I was born, so every year I look toward seeing my family all together,”  Jean-Baptiste said.


Senior Will Sanfilippo’s dog Watson wears a New Year’s hat to calm him down after fireworks.
(Will Sanfilippo)

According to the History Channel, countries around the world also have eating traditions, like Spain, where they eat grapes at midnight, which is supposed to bring good luck and happiness.  In Sweden and Norway rice pudding is served with an almond hidden in it. Whoever finds the almond is supposed to have a good year and fortune. This dish is served on New Year’s Eve. 

Freshman Lydia Wirtz surrounds herself on New Year’s with family and friends. Wirtz’s new year is filled with activities and plenty of food to go around. 

“One of my family’s traditions is making different types of pizzas so everybody can go home with full bellies,” Wirtz said. “Another thing we do is play games like Twister or Guess Who,and make resolutions for the new year.” 

According to Almanac, New Year’s resolutions started with an annual Peacock Vow when Knights during the medieval times would renew their knightly vows. To complete this tradition the knights would put their hand on a peacock and their resolution would be to keep doing their knightly duties. 

In a survey by  Forbes Health, 81% of survey-takers felt confident in their ability to reach their goals.  

“I see New Year’s as a time that I can genuinely try to think of something that I could do to improve myself,” Sanfillippo said. “Some years I’ll just throw away something that I’m not actually going to do, but recently I tried to make completing resolutions an actual personal goal.”

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