Late family dinners, sparkling wine and fireworks at midnight are some of the traditional ways of celebrating New Year’s Day in Russia. Children’s festivities may include a decorated fir tree and a visit by the Russian equivalent of Santa Claus.
To celebrate this extremely joyful holiday Rusmarka has introduced into philatelic and postal use a special stamp that is highly recommended to our readers by StampNews.com.
In Russia, the New Year holiday trumps even Christmas in importance, and major celebrations take place all over the country in recognition of the day. There is also a second New Year recognized in Russia – the Old New Year, which takes place after the regular New Year more universally observed.
The most extensive New Year celebrations in Russia occur on December 31st/January 1st. Fireworks and concerts mark this holiday. It is on this day that the Russian Santa, or Ded Moroz, and his female companion Sengurochka visit children to pass out gifts. What those in the West would call a Christmas Tree is considered a New Year's Tree in Russia. Because the first Russian New Year precedes Christmas in Russia on January 7, this tree is left up in honor of both holidays.
This New Year is considered the “New” New Year because began to be recognized after Russia made the switch from the Julian calendar (still recognized by the Orthodox Church) to the Gregorian calendar followed by the West.