Easter, unlike Christmas is a movable holiday. Easter falls on the first Sunday after the first ecclesiastical moon after the vernal equinox. There are some differences between a full moon and an ecclesiastical moon. Generally these two fall on the same day, but this was not the case in 1876. When pope Gregory the XIII standardized the calendar in 1582 the primary reason was to get Easter back in synchronization with the calendar (10 days in October had to be entirely skipped). According to Butchers algorithm Easter can fall between March 22nd and April 25th
Irish beers, stouts, and ales offer up excellence in a bottle. The richness of the flavors satisfies the palate. Ranging in strength from light to powerful, both overtones and undertones of coffee, caramel, and chocolate make these drinks a wonderful gourmet experience. Of course, some are better than others. The following is a guide to various Irish beverages. [Read more…]
The Chinese Zodiac is made up of 12 animals, rat, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, ram, monkey, rooster, dog and boar. According to legend the Jade Emperor instructed the rat to find the animals and bring them to the bank of the river. In addition to the 12 animals mentioned a cat was also involved. The animals were to cross the river to the other side, the order in which they crossed would also determine the order they would be placed in on the zodiac. The rat and cat decided to be clever and ride across on the back of the ox. When they approached the far bank the rat pushed the cat into the water and jumped of the back of the ox to be placed first. The cat never made it out of the river and the boar was the last to cross. From that moment on the cat has been the sworn enemy of the rat. [Read more…]
The history is rooted in Norse Mythology. The god balder had a recurring dream of his own death and became very depressed. This caused his mother Frigga to worry about her son. As a solution she went around to each item on the Earth and made them swear never to harm her son Balder. They all agreed except for the mistletoe plant. Being a small and insignificant plant she wasn’t worried, and her son was relieved and happy again. With his new found invincibility the other gods playing a game throwing objects at Balder who was unable to be harmed by them. The chief protagonist of Norse mythology, Loki learned of Balder’s weakness for mistletoe and began to construct a magical spear made from the plant. He then tricked Baldar’s brother into hurling the spear at him and killing him. His dream had come true and his mother wept tears of white berries. To bring her son back to life she vowed that she would kiss anyone who stood
Since ancient times the First Day of Spring has been an important day. It marks a change in temperatures and is also known as the vernal equinox. In the northern hemisphere, it is the emergence from the darkness of winter. For the southern hemisphere, the opposite is true and marks a time to begin preparation for rest. [Read more…]
Regardless of whether or not you are Irish or not, Irish pubs and bars have been popular for generations. The following are a list of 10 different Irish bars and pubs located throughout the U.S. that are well known for their Irish food, drink, Irish music, and camaraderie.
McSorley’s Old Ale House
Established in the year 1854, McSorley’s Old Ale House is the oldest of New York City’s bars and saloons. Noted patrons from John Lennon to Abe Lincoln have had pint and spent time in McSorley’s Ale House. The walls of this famous establishment are covered with historic information and the floors are strewn with sawdust to give them an authentic and unmistakable appearance.
Known as being the “Home of the Perfect Pint”, the Snug in Boston offers an extensive menu along with wonderful entertainment. Ellen and Ed, the owners of The Snug, are always awaiting the arrival of visitors. The Snug is perhaps most well-known for its European draft system which is state-of-the-art.
Grafton Pub & Grill
The Grafton Pub & Grill in Chicago, which is named after a renowned street located in Dublin, is well known for its hospitality, and for its selection of over 70 beers, and a collection of Scottish and Irish whiskies. Along with beer and whisky, the Grafton Pub & Grill boasts wonderful American and Irish comfort foods and live music Sunday through Wednesday.
Buskers is a Irish Bar and Restaurant which is family owned and located in Newport, Rhode Island. After its renovations in 2003, this quaint location became the cozy niche which is enjoyed by visitors today. It has a great selection of food and beverages, a genuine Irish atmosphere complete with pictures, artifacts, and antiques.
Anna Liffey’s is an Irish Bar located in New Haven Connecticut, which has received the Head Brew Master’s “Perfect Pint Award”. Each Sunday, visitors can enjoy live Irish music, Tuesday night for Trivia night and each Saturday to enjoy local bands.
Kells in Portland has become well-known as the as the U.S.’s #1 Irish Restaurant and bar and has served its many visitors for 25 years. People who come into Kells Portland are met with wonderful food, unparalled service, live Irish music 7 days a week, and a welcoming atmosphere.
McGillin’s Olde Ale House
McGillin’s Olde Ale House in Philadelphia, was opened the year that Lincoln was elected as president, soon after the Liberty Bell was cracked and before the breaking of the ground for the construction of Philadelphia City Hall. Established in 1860, this Ale House is the oldest tavern still operating in Philadelphia.
Kevin Barry’s Pub, which is situated in Savannah, Georgia, is located on the Savannah River in one of the city’s oldest buildings. They also offers delicious food, a wide selection of beers and alcohol, as well as live Irish music. Kevin Barr’s which is opened in 1980, is a well-known spot for military personnel, and is known across the world as a wonderful Irish spot.
Fado Irish Pub
The word Fadó, which is translated as “long ago”, is a perfect name for this bar that is steeped in culture and a genuine atmosphere. Fado Irish Pub in Washington DC, is the perfect location for family outings, office lunches, and fun nights full of food, drink, and music.
The Kerry Irish Pub
The Kerry Irish Pub in New Orleans, was established in 1993, was initially a haven for those who enjoyed live Irish music but quickly became a location for people who wish to enjoy all types of music including rock, folk, country, Irish, roots rock, bluegrass, and other types of soul music. The venue is always available to local as well as visiting musicians.
There are numerous Irish bars and pubs scattered throughout the country, many of which are very enjoyable. However, if you find yourself living in or visiting an area close to these bars, they are a sure ticket to an enjoyable and wonderful time out.
Photo credit: Un ragazzo chiamato Bi
On November 25th 2005 at 9am EST Macy’s will hold its annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade starts on 77th street and Central Park West and ends on 7th Avenue and 34th street. The parade can be viewed from different location throughout Manhattan but some of the best spots are 70th street Columbus circle to 65th Street, anywhere on Columbus circle, Broadway between 59th and 38th streets, and 34th street anywhere between Broadway and 7th Avenue.
If you are interested in viewing the parade you should plan on staking out a spot somewhere between 5 and 6am in the morning. Be sure to wear lots of layers and warm clothing as it can quite often be cold. You will be able to purchase bagels, hot chocolate, and coffee from nearby street vendors. If you are viewing from the start of the parade route it will take about 90 minutes to see the entire parade, if you are at the end of the route it will take almost 3 hours to see the whole parade. Television coverage is scheduled to begin at 9 AM. For a sneak peek at some of the balloons as they get blown up visit Central Park near the Museum of Natural History the day before between 3pm and 10pm.
The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade was started in 1924 as a thank you gift to the residents of Manhattan from Macy’s. The first helium balloon appeared in 1929. The first Mickey Mouse Balloon appeared in the parade in 1934. During 1942 through 1944 the parade wasn’t held and all of the balloons were donated to the war effort, as rubber was a rare and valuable commodity at the time. In 1945 the parade returned and was more amazing and spectacular than any of the parades before. This was the first parade to be televised and had over 2 million spectators. !957 marked one of the parades unusual accidents, the Popeye balloon filled with water from a rain shower earlier that morning, during the parade the extra weight caused the balloon to veer off course and bump into a nearby building. The collision caused the water to dump out all over parade bystanders. In 1958 there was a helium shortage so the balloons were suspended from construction cranes and filled with air. In the early 1960’s some of the older and more popular balloons were introduced including underdog, Bullwinkle, snoopy and Kermit the frog. 1969 marked the first year that parade floats were included in the parade. Parade floats are generally built on the chassis of an old school bus. In 1976 the parade was an extravaganza that the country had never seen before. It had a battalion of minuteman to celebrate the bicentennial anniversary of the United States independence. Earlier that year Macy’s started the Fourth of July fireworks display, a tradition that is carried on till this day. Today over 2.5 million people line the 2 and half mile parade route and another 40 million viewers watch the parade on TV. In addition to the floats and balloons, the parade now has broadways shows, and other popular musical acts performing in the parade. It’s been a long running tradition to end the parade with Santa’s sleigh every year.
Hardness is the measure of one structure hardness against another. French mineralologist proposed a relative scale to measure one substances ability to scratch another’s. The lower the number the softer the material, the higher the number harder the material. [Read more…]
Breweries have been an integral part of the culture of many countries for centuries. The following are a series of 17 of the oldest breweries in the world.
St. James Gate Brewery
Located in Ireland and established in 1759, the Guinness factory consists of the main western entryway to the city of Dublin that was used in the middle ages. They are world renown for their most famous beer, Guinness. Arthur Guinness, in 1759, signed a lease for 9000 years with the price being 45 pounds each year.
Established in 1040, the Weihenstephan brewery located in Weihenstephan, Germany is considered to be the oldest breweries in the entire world. It received its license in 1040 but its historical lineage can be traced back to 768 when there is documentation stating that a hop garden was located on the area.
Bolton has been in existence since 1266 although its modern existence began in the year 1753 when a man named Peter Bolten leased the location.
Also located in Germany, Weltenburg has been making beer for practically a millennium. The original abbey was established in 620 leading to some debate that this may be the oldest brewery in the world.
Established in Austria in the year 1454, Hubertus became less popular after WWI and the loss of the war. Regardless, wonderful beer is still brewed in this location.
Brewery in Stiegl, Austria
In 1492, Stiegl was established as one of the oldest in Austria. The most famous of its brews are Hefeweizen and light lager.
Established in 1478, Warka is the most famous of all breweries in Poland and has recently received extensive renovations.
St. Francis Abbey
The land, which once belonged to a Franciscan Abbey that had brewed ale since the 14th century, was purchased by John Smithwick in 1710 and went on to be the birthplace of the famous brew, Smithwick’s. This beer is owned by the same parent company as Guinness.
Samuel Smith Brewery
Originally established in England in 1758, it was later purchased in 1852 by Samuel Smith for his son, John. It was was named after one of the descendants of the family who was named Samuel as well.
Although it is often confused with the American beer, Budvar is an older beer that was named for Budweis, the city in the Czech Republic in which the Budvar brewery is situated and was established in 1785. This beer is the reason why the American company, Budweiser, is not able to be Budweiser this except in the U.S.
Established in England in the year 1777 by William Bass, Bass is well known for Red Triangle beer.
The oldest brewery in North America is Molson’s in Canada. It is the second oldest Canadian company and is still managed by the Molson family. It remains in its original location where it was established in 1786. Molson’s has recently been well known for its Coors brew.
Established in 1784 as Lithuania’s oldest beer maker, Svyturys has spent considerable time as a part of Germany.
Sinebrychoff was founded by Nikolai Sinebrychoff, a Russian immigrant to Finland, and is believed to be the oldest in Northern Europe. Sinebrychoff is also responsible for the bottling of several popular soft drinks such as Coca-Cola for the country of Finland.
Cascade, which is the oldest in Australia, was founded in 1824 by the English Peter Degraves. Although it is considered a part of Australia, it’s located on Tasmania and operates malting with local grown barley.
Zatec, which was constructed in the year 1800, is believed by some to be in existence in one way or another since 1004. Evidence exists that shows that the location was paying beer taxes as long ago as the 11th century.
D.G. Yuengling & Son Brewery
The oldest American brewery in the United States was established in the year 1829 and is known as D.G. Yuengling & Son. They are well known for Yuengling, its traditional lager. The brewing company is still managed, operated, and owned by the Yuenglings family with the current owner being Richard L. Yuengling.
Brewing has been an integral national and cultural tradition that has been respected and appreciated for centuries upon centuries. Great beers can be found throughout the world. Beer has been, continues to be, and will be an essential part of people’s lives for centuries to come.
Photo credit: Mikelo