Armenian Holidays
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  • 1 – 2 January is actually celebrated the week after the holiday, when people exchange gifts and houses are open to impromptu guests. An abundance of food and sweets is laden on every table available and friends and family go from home to home to visit. Unexpected foreigners will be touched by warmth and sincerity of hospitality.
  • 6 January Christmas (Armenian Church hasn’t change its Calendar since the Middle Ages) is celebrated more solemnly than in the West. During the first ten days of January, opera, theatre and concert venues are filled, even in the worst of weather.
  • 11 February The commemoration day for St.Vardan Mamikonyan, who headed Armenian army in defence of Christianity in IV century.
  • 14 February Pagan holiday dedicated to the Sun was later united with Eve of the Great Lent. Enamoured pairs jump over the fires in virtually every yard in Armenia. (Fortunately coincides with Valentine’s Day).
  • 1 April Fools Day (of course non-official) Be prepared for any (but never insulting) kind of joke or prank.
  • 7 April Motherhood and Beauty Day.
  • 24 April Memorial Day for Victims of 1915 Armenian Genocide in Turkey
  • March/April Religious observations for Easter, the greatest holiday of the Armenian Church, begins on Good Friday and lasts throughout the weekend. Easter Sunday begins with the cracking of boiled eggs, dyed a rich brown color. The person who can crack another’s egg without cracking his own gets his wish.
  • 9 May Heroes of WW II march through the towns on Victory Day. They are honoured for their sacrifices and the tradition is for the very young to give them flowers and a kiss.
  • 28 May In 1918 the Republic of Armenia restored its statehood after half a millennium of lost sovereignty/ Sardarapat
  • Second Sunday of June Vardavar, the holiday of Anahit, the Goddess of beauty is celebrated by throwing water at each other. Everyone with the exception of the elderly participate; so get properly dressed.
  • 11 August Ancient Armenian New Year, still celebrated by enthusiasts at the pagan temple at Garni.
  • Second Sunday of August The Catholicos (Supreme Patriarch of the Armenian Church) blesses the grape harvest.
  • 5 JulyConstitution Day.
  • 21 September Independence Day – the Third Republic of Armenia announced the results of a national referendum on secession from Soviet Union.
  • Late September/Early October Annual Erebouny-Yerevan Day is celebrated with concerts, traditional dancing and music and concluded by huge “Golden Fall” festival.
  • 7 December Memorial Day for Victims of 1988 Earthquake

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