Did You Know?
Facts, Figures, &
Folklore About the
Season of Spring
Ah, spring. The snow fades away, the temperatures warm, and the days grow blissfully longer. The lovebirds are happily cooing in their new nests; and the daffodils and tulips are blooming. This year, get yourself ready to spring into springtime with our fun-filled spring trivia.
Did you know that the Vernal Equinox marks the beginning of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere?
Occurring annually on March 20 or March 21, the Vernal Equinox marks one of two times of the year at which both hemispheres are equal distant from the Sun. So when spring has sprung, day and night are evenly divided into 12 hours periods.
Did you know that the saying "March comes in like a lion, but goes out like a lamb" was considered an historical predictor for early springtime weather patterns?
There has been a lot of truth to the axiom: Just look at average temperatures in New York City. In early March, it's a chilly 48 degrees. By the end of the March, temps have jumped to a balmy 61 degrees, the single-highest increase for any month in the Big Apple.
Did you know that springtime allergies actually start in the winter?
By February, temperatures in most parts of the country have begun to rise, triggering the trees to bloom and release their pollen. The most allergic springtime pollens are oak, olive, elm, birch, ash, hickory, poplar, sycamore, maple, cypress and walnut. Odds are you have a few of those trees near your home, so now is the time to stock up on tissues and allergy medicine.
Did you know that doctors now believe that spring fever -- a colloquialism for that giddy burst of energy experienced when temperatures rise -- is actually rooted in brain science?
Since the springtime brings longer and brighter days, we are exposed to more light. That light exposure triggers our brains to release less melatonin, the brain chemical that makes us sleepy in the winter, and more seratonin, a mood-elevating neurotransmitter. Whatever the reason, one thing is for sure: Spring fever is the perfect cure for the winter blues.
Did you know that Spring is the season for festivals of rebirth?
The Anglo-Saxons first marked the Vernal Equinox with their Eastre festival, replete with symbols of fertility and renewal, such as the egg. A precursor to Easter, the Anglo-Saxon festival may even have inspired the modern-day Easter bunny. Renewal is also a common theme in the Christian holiday of Easter and the Jewish holiday of Passover.
Did you know that the Vernal Equinox also marks the Baha'i faith's celebration Naw-Rúz or the New Year?
According to the Bahai prophet, the equinox is an especially powerful time because of the new life that it brings.
Did you know that the ritual of Spring Cleaning is rooted in historic necessity, dating back to the 18th century?
During the cold winter months, houses were heated with soot-spewing, coal-burning furnaces. Come springtime, windows were thrown open and entire houses got a thorough scrub-down.
Did you know that there might even be a connection linking Spring Cleaning to Passover?
For centuries, Jewish families have prepared for this festival of freedom by scouring their homes and ridding them of chametz, or leavened bread products. On Passover, only matzah and other non-leavened products may be consumed.
Did you know that Spring Training -- one of the quintessential markers of springtime -- is nearly as old as baseball itself?
The first spring training game likely took place in New Orleans in 1870 between the Cincinnati Red Stockings and the Chicago White Stockings. By 1900, spring training had become a well-established ritual, which for more than a century has graced small towns throughout southern Florida and Arizona.
Did you know that the top spring break destination for college students is southern Florida?
Until the 1980s, the #1 party city was Fort Lauderdale, which was popularized in the 1960 movie "Where the Boys Are." Residents began complaining, however, when upwards of 375,000 college students descended on their beaches. Fort Lauderdale police cracked down on revelers, and they moved north to Panama City Beach.
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