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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Carnival in Greece

Carnival parade in Kozani

Carnival parade in Patra

Carnival parade in Patra

 Carnival period started in Greece on 24 of February and it will end on  17th of March, the Carnival Sunday. Children but elder  people as well wait for Carnival Sunday to dress up, put their masks on and visit friends and relatives. 

            There is a big feast at Carnival time. Young or old, people sing and dance everywhere you go, in the streets, in houses and in clubs. It is the «jolly Carnival» as they call it
            People play game round a maypole, called "gaetanaki", similar to the maypole dance. Girls and boys jump, twist and dance round a tall pole which has ribbons of various colours attached to the top.

On 7th of March it is  “Tsiknopempti”. This day is similar to the Polish “Greasy Thursday” or the Italian “Fat Thuesday” On Tsiknopempti we use to roast meat, sausages, drink wine and make the sweet halvas (we have posted the recipe.)
The last Sunday of the Carnival, in many Greek cities and villages take place parades of  decorated flat- topped vehicles with many different funny displays, large figures of the Lord of the Carnival himself moving his big head and  groups of boys and girls dressed up in their carnival costumes singing and dancing. There are different customs in each city.
The custom "Genitsaroi and Mpoules"of Naousa
"Genitsaroi and Mpoules" of Naousa
:The custom of "Koudounoforoi" of  Sohos
The custom "Fanoi" of  Kozani
   When the festivities are over, people set fire to the effigy of the Lord of the Carnival. As they burn it, they dance around it and…the party is over.
The burning of the Lord of the Carnival

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