Blen and Biruk celebrating Shadey


Ethiopian spring festivals are a celebration of the changing of the seasons, which is connected to an essential aspect of life that depends on the time when the gloomy rainy season, or “kiremt,” gives way to the sunny, beautiful summer day. These celebrations, which resemble happy Thanksgiving celebrations, are held among the various ethnic groups of the nation as we learn about the various spring festivals celebrated there. Ashenda or Shadey is a very colorful celebration that primarily takes place in the middle of August in the northern Ethiopian regions of Tigray and Amhara Agew area, where it is known as Ashenda and Shadey, respectively. It is also celebrated in the regions of Wollo under the names Raya and Kobo under the name (solel), and in other parts of Tigray under the names Ayniwari in the town of Axum and mariya in the town of Ad The day is also observed in neighboring Eritrea, which has traditions that are quite similar to those of the northern Ethiopian provinces mentioned above. Girls who commemorate the day wear lovely green floral traditional Eritrean costumes. It is a holiday for the girls who go around singing and dancing in groups while dressed in beautiful Habesha kemis (Ethiopian and Eritrean traditional dress) around their towns and cities for three days, collecting gifts from strangers as the event signifies the end of a two-week fast or known as (tsome filseta) to honor the virgin marriage of Zion.

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