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Easter Monday is the day after Easter Sunday and is a public holiday in some countries. It is the second day of Eastertide. In Western Christianity, it is also the second day of the Octave of Easter, and in Eastern Christianity, it is also the second day of Bright Week.
In the Eastern Orthodox Church and Byzantine Rite Catholic Churches, this day is called "Bright Monday" or "Renewal Monday". The services, as in the rest of Bright Week, are quite different from during the rest of the year and are similar to the services on Pascha (Easter Sunday) and include an outdoor procession after the Divine Liturgy; while this is prescribed for all days of that week, often they are only celebrated on Monday and maybe a couple of other days in parish churches, especially in non-Orthodox countries. Also, when the calendar date of the feast day of a major saint, e.g., St. George or the patron saint of a church or one's name day, falls during Holy Week or on Easter Sunday, the saint's day is celebrated on Easter Monday.
In Australia, Easter Monday is a public holiday. Some people enjoy outdoor sporting events, such as the Oakbank Easter Racing Carnival in South Australia, and the Stawell Gift in Victoria, as well as a traditional AFL match between Geelong Cats and the Hawthorn Hawks at the MCG. The Australian Three Peaks Race in Tasmania until 2011.
Easter Monday (French: Le Lundi de Pâques) is the Monday immediately following Easter Sunday and is a statutory holiday for federal employees. Although not mandatory by federal regulation, some employers also give this day off to employees out of common practice. Additionally, this holiday succeeds Good Friday (the Friday preceding Easter), which is a mandatory holiday for all employees, giving those workers an extra long weekend in April. In provinces where Family Day, Islander Day, or Louis Riel Day are not observed, Easter Weekend is the first provincial holiday after New Year's Day.
Śmigus-dyngus (or lany poniedziałek, Polish for Wet Monday) is the name for Easter Monday in Poland and the diaspora. In the Czech Republic it is called velikonoční pondělí, in Slovakia veľkonočný pondelok and in Hungary Vízbevető. All these Catholic countries (and some others) practice the unique ancient custom on this day. Traditionally, boys and men pour a bucket of water or perfume on girls and women and/or spank their buttocks and legs with long thin twigs (pussy willow) or switches made from willow, birch or decorated tree branches. A legend says that it keep women healthy, beautiful, and fertile during the whole next year.
Another related custom, unique to Poland, is that of sprinkling bowls (garce) of ashes on people or houses, celebrated a few weeks earlier at the "półpoście". This custom is almost forgotten, but still practiced in the area around the borders of Masuria and Masovia.
In Egypt, the ancient festival of Sham Ennessim (Arabic: شم النسيم, literally meaning "smelling of the breeze") is celebrated on the Coptic (i.e. Eastern) Easter Monday, though the festival dates back to Pharonic times (about 2700 BC). It is an Egyptian national holiday. Traditional activities include painting eggs, taking meals outdoors, and eating feseekh (fermented mullet).
In the Republic of Ireland it is a day of remembrance for the men and women who died in the Easter Rising which began on Easter Monday 1916. Until 1966, there was a parade of veterans, past the headquarters of the Irish Republican Army at the General Post Office (GPO) on O'Connell Street, and a reading of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic.
In Spain, the Easter Monday is an official public holiday in the autonomous communities of Catalonia, the Land of Valencia, Balearic Islands, Navarre, the Basque Autonomous Community, Cantabria, Castilla–La Mancha and La Rioja. In Catalonia, the Land of Valencia and Murcia is typical a kind of cake called Easter mona. It's usually given by godparents to their godchild and it is a tradition for families or groups of friends to gather together and to go somewhere, specially to the countryside, to eat the mona.
In The Netherlands Easter Monday (Tweede Paasdag) is an official public holiday.
In the United States, Easter Monday is not a federal holiday, and is generally not observed on a nationwide level, apart from a few traditions such as the White House Easter egg roll. On a local level, the day is informally observed in some areas such as the state of North Dakota, and some cities in New York, Michigan, and Indiana. Easter Monday was a public holiday in North Carolina from 1935 to 1987, due to the early-20th century tradition of state government workers taking the day off to attend the annual baseball game between North Carolina State College and Wake Forest College. Texas and Maryland schools often have two holidays on Good Friday and Easter Monday. In some states and districts, public schools and universities are closed on Easter Monday, often part of spring break.
Traditionally Polish areas of the United States observe Easter Monday as Dyngus Day. Dyngus Day celebrations are widespread and popular in Chicago; Cleveland; Buffalo, New York; Wyandotte and Hamtramck in Michigan; South Bend and La Porte in Indiana; and Hanover, New Hampshire.
Three of the four countries of the United Kingdom have Easter Monday as a bank holiday: England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. In Leicestershire, England, the people of Hallaton hold a bottle-kicking match and Hare Pie Scramble.
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