Sweden, the Northern European country, celebrates New Year on January 1. New Year in Sweden is considered to be the perfect time for everyone to have some enthralling time, and thus everyone ensure to celebrate it with splendor and joy.
One gets to see the true spirit and the essence of New Year, when people even in the extreme cold conditions, come out of their houses to mark their cheer and happiness, and to ensure a grand welcome to the New Year.
It is just because of their belief for New Year, and their consideration of it as an important time and festival of their country, that people of Sweden engage in lots of grand celebrations, which are full of fervor and flourish.
New Year Celebrations in Sweden
During the time of the New Year, most of the Sweden, in particularly the southern part, goes through unconscionable cold climatic conditions. In such weather, people do tend to come out covered up all over from head to toe, and never miss a chance to let down few extra pegs of champagne down through their throat. They love to have their New Year celebrations to be intensely prolific, modern, and flamboyant.
It is easy to find many who are planning to be a part of New Year Eve parties, which reflect less of the local culture and are more of an evidence of the adopted continental lifestyle. New Year celebrations are also more about spending time with friends, rather than members of the family, which otherwise is outright reserved during the time of preceding Christmas time. New Year celebrations begin on New Year’s Eve and go on the whole night to conclude in the early hours of New Year’s Day.
With the arrival of the moment of New Year, people cheer out loud with whatever they have. Their natural senses, car horns, whistling talent, church bells, or drum beats, all live their vibrant moment as soon as clock turns twelve at midnight. The fireworks show complements them, when they distribute colors and lights over the night sky of Sweden. According to beliefs, it is a way with which evil spirits are swayed away.
Traditional New Year Celebrations in Sweden
Apart from the conventional celebrations, one also gets to see a loyal implementation of customs and traditions in New Year celebrations. There is a tradition of eating twelve grapes on the midnight of the New Year. Also, there is another tradition of eating chocolate with fritters at the end of the celebrations. On the occasion of New Year, people make sure to dress up best and preferably in newly bought clothes. Also, it is ensured to have clean and tidy house, preferably with finest tablecloth, dinnerware, and candles.
The dinner as planned for the day saw everyone sitting, eating, cheering, and celebrating the moment. It is considered as a symbol of good luck and prosperity to have black-eyed peas and legumes as a part of New Year dish. Discussions are made over the year that went, and the year that has to come. With clock ringing twelve at midnight, all those present either by an announcement in public or in their hearts, promises to be a better human being in the coming year. Some also make resolutions, with the most common being is to get rid of any bad habit, say smoking, excessive drinking, or to achieve something, say lose weight, make savings, etc. However, it is not necessarily firmly followed by everyone, at least not for an entire year. Though, there are exceptions, which are difficult to found.
There is a tradition of Ano Viejo, as a part of which an effigy is prepared in the dress of a scarecrow, and is covered up with newspapers and is equipped with firecrackers. It represents for all the evil and bad things iof the past. At midnight, it is burnt, and people cheer and celebrate in joy.
There is a ritual of chiming bells and speaking out a New Year verse to the nation on New Year’s Eve. It occurs in the Skansen open-air museum, and is live telecasted to the entire nation. This is prominently important as a majority of the Sweden population find it to be too difficult to break their solitary their warm winter rugs, which cause them to have their New Year celebrations over their beds or sofas, with a TV at fore. However, there are some who prefer to let the cold air touch their skin, and thus, they move out to have a live view of the fireworks show.