Maslyanytsa is Ukrainian Mardi Gras. We have big party with butter goddess Masla. Butter is maslo. We make ton of delicious round pancake to symbolize sun coming back after winter. We do not eat ground hog like North American.
Ukrainian always been really big on sleigh ride. We put straw figure of goddess Maslyanytsa in sleigh and even take her on sliding toboggan. At this festival, we steer sleigh horse in semi-circle path like sun across sky. Rider on horse go around village with torch to symbolize same thing. In meantime, masquerade bystander throw snowball at sleigh rider. Rider throw stale pancake back.
At midnight, we strip clothes off straw figure and burn her to say, “Bye bye, winter, we not miss you.” Long time ago, this goddess is Kostroma, whose name mean “bony.” We get tired of bony old winter and burn it up. Word “bonfire” in English mean “bone fire.” Is way to chase away evil spirit and invite good one. Ashes get cover in snow for first fertilization of field. We also burn leftover pancake. Which is best thing for it.Make extra recipe so you have enough pancake to throw at Maslyanytsa holiday. Baba do this one week ahead so they good and stale. Then they make decent flight trajectory from Mardi Gras sleigh. Baba even have flight simulator in her basement. She practice all year. If you don't mind to waste good sauce, this make nice mess in bystander hair. If you send media release ahead of parade, your politician will probably be in front row. Some politician always in front row, especial if they have to shove person on crutch to be there.
Med Nalysnyky (Honey Crepes) & Ukrainian Mardi Gras.pdf
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