Flower crown part of Polish tradition for Dyngus Day

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Easter is quickly approaching. And while many are looking forward to that holiday, the one that follows is equally exciting. Dyngus Day is that day.

Dyngus Day is a time for celebrating. It’s described as Fat Tuesday, but at the end of the Lenten season. Autumn Spina, Dancer for Harmony Polish Folk Ensemble told News 4, “It’s really fun since I’m Polish, and my grandma’s Polish, stuff like that. It’s a connection to my roots and I to get to carry on the traditions even though I don’t get to visit Poland very often.”

Wearing red is a requirement to celebrate Dyngus Day and if you’re a woman a flower crown is also a must. Spina said, “It’s called a bianic and it’s a flower crown and all the unmarried girls wear it as part of the costume.”

The flower crown started as a way to symbolize purity, and rebirth in single females. Traditionally, poppies are the flower used to make the crowns. That flower is red with a black center and is the national flower of Poland. Now the crowns have turned a little nontraditional. She shared, “For people who don’t dance like to wear ones with ribbon or something a little bit softer. And it still connects with the Polish heritage but it’s just a little more Westernized.”

Chris Klaich, King of Crowns, has been selling and making crowns at the Broadway Market for 15 years.He said, “I bring color to the market, and I bring color to Dyngus Day.” Klaich shared that business has grown exponentially in the last few years because the holiday has too. He said, “Dyngus Day as a whole has grown. It’s a community thing now. It’s like how all the people that come to the Irish parade aren’t Irish. You don’t have to be polish to celebrate Dyngus Day.”

So get your red shirts, pussy willows and squirt guns ready, and have your crowns in place because everyone is Polish on Dyngus Day!

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