know for certain who lays claim to the first Christmas tree
but few dispute that it was in the area which is now Northern
When searching for the historical beginning of the first Christmas tree, one must go very deep into the past. Just like Santa Claus one finds that the first Christmas tree was combination of many different facts, legends and customs. The first documented use of a tree in a winter Christmas celebration was
in several locations in Northern Europe including Estonia, and
Latvia, in the year 1510 according to documents from the Blackheads Fraternity
chronicles and from various sources in Germany. click
for historical facts
are known for their "spirit
of giving" and sometimes Americans are known for
getting slightly "off the track" and forget what
"giving" is all about so to speak. One famous
a Wonderful Life" provides such a glimpse of what life
might be like if you were not there to give of yourself.
Right about - the 4:00 minute mark brings a tear to
one's eye !
are noticeable differences between traditional Christmas Winter
celebrations in North America and those in Northern Europe.
North America, Christmas is more of an event and family driven
activity. Shopping is normally done in large shopping centers
and done rather mechanically and quickly. Some have criticized
Americans for turning Christmas into a commercial venture!
many cities and towns in Northern Europe, Christmas is more a
"way of life" a traditional winter celebration of the celebration
of life and asking for a prosperous New Year to be bestowed upon
all folks. In Northern Europe, the activities start on the first
advent (usually last weekend in November) and run through the
New Year Holiday - places with a Russian influence have an added
benefit to extend the winter holiday through the Russian Orthodox
Christmas usually the 6 or 7th of January.
activities in Northern Europe and more community based and the
citizens experience the "spirit" each day as they go
about their daily activities. Open air Markets spring up in the
town squares and wonderful hand crafted items are for sale. Hot
wine, roasted almond nuts and other goodies are sold by street
for more information on the Medieval Christmas Experience (TM)
wonderful event occurs on the day of the Winter Solstice
normally the 21st of December each year. That is the Yule log
activity where a "cast of costumed and masked characters" pull
pieces of wood through the streets of the city to "pick
up" the evil spirits. The wood logs are then returned to
the fires burning squares where a ceremony with chats and music encourages
the evil spirits to come out of the logs and be burnt up
readying the city for a prosperous New Year. This event is based
on pagan roots and has been done annually for thousands of years
and is coming soon again to a city in Northern Europe.
Estonia is one city where you may Enjoy the Medieval
Christmas Experience (TM)