by OLIVIA HECKER
What is your favorite holiday? Do you enjoy the springtime, which brings Easter, or the summer, which brings Memorial Day and the Fourth of July? Or there is fall, which includes Halloween and Thanksgiving. Lastly, but surely not least, there is Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
All holidays serve different purposes, some are religious and others are a way to celebrate significant historical events. Easter, in its historical and religious meaning, is a Christian Holy day that commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ – though some people participate in Easter by having fun Easter egg hunts and eating candy with little regard to the holiday’s actual meaning.
Some holidays people just use as a means to celebrate and party, like St. Patrick’s Day or Halloween. Ultimately, I find myself enjoying the winter holidays the most. Christmas time brings out beautiful decorations that are displayed across buildings and homes all over the country.
Different cities have different holiday traditions they put on display for all to see each year. New York City has its famous Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree that hundreds of thousands of people travel to the city to see. Growing up in Kansas City, there are several special events the city indulges in to celebrate the holidays. Starting in late November into December, the Union Station has showings of classic Christmas movies such as “Elf” and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” for all to enjoy. The Kauffman of Performing Arts Center always has showings for the Nutcracker Ballet that are simply beautiful.
For some people, the first white snow of the holiday season brings them a certain feeling of delight. Waking up and seeing a layer of pure white snow across the lawn is one sign of the holiday season. The beginning of the Christmas season is sometimes marked by retail companies or food chains. Some stores cannot help but bring out the Christmas decorations right after October 31st.
Food chains such as Starbucks ring in the season with their limited-time holiday beverages. As coveted as the Pumpkin Spice Latte (or PSL) is, the Christmas time brings in the Peppermint Mocha, the Toasted White Chocolate Mocha, or a Chestnut Praline Latte. Every year for the special holiday season Starbucks unveils new cup designs specifically for Christmas time. The winter holidays are filled with candy canes and hot chocolate and tradition.
Most families or individuals find their own special holiday traditions they abide by each year. One of my favorite holiday traditions is volunteering at my local churches “Kids Mall” each year. At the “Kids Mall” parents bring in their children where they are able to shop on their own (with volunteer’s assistance) to buy reasonably price Christmas gifts for their friends and family. It’s all very Christmas themed with the volunteers being referred to as ‘Santa’s Elves’ and wearing Santa hats.
I spoke to Des Moines local Leigh Carlson to find out what she does to enjoy the holiday season. Leigh said her favorite holiday memory from growing up in Des Moines is hearing Christmas carolers on the skywalk downtown. What are your favorite holiday memories? College is the perfect time to create new holiday memories with your friends in a new city!