December 5, 2009

Day of the Ninja (a.k.a. Creep Like a Ninja Day)

This is the day to wear black and be silent and stealthy.

This holiday was created partly in response to Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 19). I did not
know this, but apparently pirates and ninjas have a “fierce and inexplicable online rivalry.” There is even a Wikipedia page on the conflict, which apparently began with a debate on the question, "Who would win in a fight:pirates or ninjas?"

For more information on Day of the Ninja, go here.

Also...this evening is...

Sinterklaas (Netherlands and elsewhere)

This is the evening before the name day of the patron saint of children. It is largely celebrated in the Netherlands and countries associated with it (Belgium, Suriname, etc.), but some Germans, Americans, French, and others also have this holiday—with lots of varying traditions, of course.

In the Netherlands, Sinterklaas (which is basically St. Nicholas' Eve) is the main occasion of gift giving. Children receive their presents from St. Nicholas, and everybody enjoys a feast.

In Belgium, children do not receive their gifts in the evening, but instead put their shoe in front of the fireplace and find presents in (and around) the shoes in the morning of December 6th.

Find out more here.

There's a Dutch rec
ipe, Sinterklaas songs, and a coloring page available here, and there are lots of different coloring pages available here.

Sinterklaas traditions were brought to America by the Dutch colonists, who started a colony called New Amsterdam. Today the site of that colony is a bustling U.S. city. Do you know which one?


Because of the old ties with the Netherlands, there are Sinterklaas celebrations in NYC this weekend. If you live in or near New York City, check them out.

This photo shows Sinterklaas arriving via steamboat.

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