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Holidays, Days-Off in Russia



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Holidays, Days-Off in Russia

Description

January 1 – The New Year

January 7- Christmas

January 14 – New Year’s Day

February 23 – Man’s Day. Defenders of the Motherland Day.

March 8th – International Women’s Day

Easter: the date varies with each year. (Paskha)

Labor Day: May 1, 2

Victory Day: May 9

City day, last week of May.

Independence Day (12 June)

National Reconciliation Day: November 7

Constitution Day: December 12

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Holidays, Days-Off in Russia
Description
All the public and private offices are normally closed on those days. Families and friends get together for dinners and parties. Russian holidays present a mixture of new and old, religious and secular, professional and private. National holidays reflect multicolored Russian history. Christian traditions were combined with pagan ones and therefore strongly connected to the seasons and agricultural cycle. Church holidays were mixed with those introduced during the communist regime. When a national holiday falls on a weekend day people enjoy additional day-off because it is considered to be unfair to miss either a holiday or a weekend. Here is the description of the major official holidays.
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January 1 – The New Year
The New Year is probably the most popular holiday in Russia. Its celebration similar to the celebration of Christmas: the families gather around the table, people wish each other all the best and give presents to the members of their families. This is considered to be a family celebration, with people dressed as Grandfather Frost (the Russian equivalent of Father Christmas) and Snow maiden, the traditional bearers of gifts. The President addresses the nation and says how the next year will be better, then he wishes his people Happy New Year, all the best, then the Kremlin’s chimes go, at that moment someone in the family opens the bottle of champagne [damages a bit of furniture, glass and someone in the family], exactly at 12 everyone congratulates each other, cheers, no kissing please, and drinks the champagne while the anthem is on. New Year’s trees? How funny is that? New Year’s Tree is exactly like Christmas tree and serves only one purpose, aside from that all mushy-wussy holiday spirit; you get your presents under the tree. The adults exchange the gifts somewhere after midnight .
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January 7- Christmas
For many Russians, a return to religion represents a return to their old roots and their old culture. Throughout Russia, after Christmas Eve services, people carrying candles, torches, and homemade lanterns parade around the church, just as their grandparents and great- grandparents did long ago. The Krestny Khod procession is led by the highest-ranking member of the Russian Orthodox Church. After the procession completes its circle around the church, the congregation reenters and they sing several carols and hymns before going home for a late Christmas Eve dinner Russian Orthodox.
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January 14 – New Year’s Day
Discrepancy between church calendars leads to the fact that January 14th corresponds to January 1 in the Julian calendar. And for those people who celebrate Christmas on 7 of January it is logical to meet the New Year seven days later. Others prefer not to lose a good chance to welcome the New Year twice. Old New Year is not a day off, but is a traditional holiday in these parts of the world. Celebrated on the night January 13/14, it comes from the times when the calendar in Russia was two weeks behind the Gregorian calendar. They should’ve moved the Christmas two weeks too, but they did not. So, we first celebrate New Year then Christmas, so does Orthodox Church.
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February 23 – Man’s Day. Defenders of the Motherland Day.
Until recently this holiday was known as Soviet Army Day but nowadays it has become a holiday for all men by analogy with the similar Women’s Day. Men are congratulated and given presents.
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March 8th – International Women’s Day
On this day, it is traditional for men of all ages to give presents and flowers to the women they love. Particular attention is paid to women inside their family. In a way, it is similar to such holidays as Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day.
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Easter: the date varies with each year. (Paskha)
The dates on which Lent and Easter fall change every year. On Easter Sunday, St. Petersburg churches are filled with worshipers, the evocative sound of smell of incense. Russians traditionally greet each other with Khristos voskres (Christ is risen), to which the reply is Voistine voskres. (He is truly risen).
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Labor Day: May 1, 2
Even though no longer celebrated as International Workers’ Solidarity Day, this event, now known as Labor and Spring Holiday, retains the festive nature, with colorful parades through Moscow’s Red Square and St Petersburg’s Palace Square.
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Victory Day: May 9
After a rather somber ceremony at Piskarevskoe Cemetery, smartly-dressed veterans, festooned with medals and awards, fill Nevskiy prospect and Palace Square in commemoration of the Nazi surrender in 1945.
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City day, last week of May.
To celebrate the day the city was founded, 27 May 1703, the City Day festival is packed full of events, from Peter the Great look alike-contests to one of the most impressive fireworks displays to be held in the city all year. The manifold festivities all take place in and around the Peter and Paul Fortress.
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Independence Day (12 June)
The day Russia became ‘independent’ of the Soviet Union is marked with fireworks at 10 pm.
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National Reconciliation Day: November 7
A traditional holiday for nearly 75 years to commemorate the Anniversary of the October Revolution (on the old calendar, the revolution took place on Oct 25). No longer a state holiday, many Russians continue to celebrate not having to celebrate the 1917 Revolution anymore!
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Constitution Day: December 12
When Yeltsin’s new constitution replaced the Brezhnev’s version, a new constitution day replaced the old one. Fireworks are set off all over town at 10 p.m. Independence Day, which commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Sovereignty of the Russian Federation in 1991.
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