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Polish Birthday Party

alinakilarski 1 | -  
26 Aug 2009 /  #1
I wanted to know if anyone could tell me something about traditional polish birthday parties. I wanted to have one for my little girl turning one years old but can't find much about it. I know that namesday is important but I thought there would be something for birthdays too. Anything I can find i would be grateful for.
mafketis 35 | 11,216  
26 Aug 2009 /  #2
traditionally AFAICT birthday parties as such did not exist (don't feel bad for Polish kids, they have plenty other occasions to get gifts).

Even namedays seems more for adults than kids (and the adult whose name day it was held a party or two which they paid for and usually didn't receive any more than symbolic gifts).

I wouldn't sweat it for a one year old, you have a few years to find some traditional Polish games and foods or whatever to integrate into her birthday parties).
SzwedwPolsce 11 | 1,595  
26 Aug 2009 /  #3
Or just do it as you want. It's probably difficult to define the typical Polish birthday party. A know some teenagers who throw a party, drink some (read much) alcohol and eat some chips. But that's probably a little too early for your kid. If you want to make a cake and give the kid a gift, just do it. As you know, nameday is more celebrated in Poland than birthday.
mafketis 35 | 11,216  
26 Aug 2009 /  #4
I'll also add that it used to common practice for the person whose name day it was to bring cakes (not a cake, but various kinds of Danish and cookies and other sweet baked goods) to work for co-workers (rather than the other way around).
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,446  
28 Aug 2009 /  #5
The singing of STO LAT is de rigueur at nameday and birthday parties alike.
McCoy 27 | 1,269  
28 Aug 2009 /  #6
birthday mostly. nameday occasionally.
frd 7 | 1,401  
29 Aug 2009 /  #7
From what I know birthdays are more important. Namedays were a "communist" tradition and brithdays came from the west ( mainly Germany ). That's why people who were knee deep into communism prefered namedays. Some old people who miss "old" Poland or hate "Germany linked to birthdays" still prefer namedays. Even though birthdays are celebrated more frequently, most people (between family members) still give a little present or at least wish somebody good health and stuff like that.
Eurola 4 | 1,909  
29 Aug 2009 /  #8
I don't know about the "communist' idea of name days. Name days are for the Saint you were named after (see, religious reason, not communist). So, I'm not sure who spoiled your information frd. Birthdays were always acknowledged but not celebrated.

Yes, name days were for big parties, flowers mostly (instead of gifts) and yes, drinking plus lots of good home made food. Even young people mention their name day more often than their birthday, so I hear.

And... no, praying was never a part of name day party, no matter who the saint was you were named after... :)
frd 7 | 1,401  
29 Aug 2009 /  #9

Some may say that they are, some that they are not. I was refering more to the change that after throwing away the shackles of communism somehow namedays have become less important and birthdays were celebrated more. They are not connected to communism per se but there was still certain assocation few years ago. I heard few older people or comments about them that mentioned that during communism namedays were so much better than those capitalist brithdays.
Anique - | 6  
30 Aug 2009 /  #10
My Grandma used to celebrate name days with even more joy and energy than her birthdays (well, of course, women don't want other people to remind them their age :) ). And she had definitely non-communist mind. She was just used to celebrate name days, like most people brought up before WWII, so in non-communist times.

But ad rem - I think there's nothing like a typical polish birthday party. When I was a kid my mom used to bake a birthday cake for me, put candles on top etc. There were also sweets, fruits, drinks. And of course my friends ;)

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