Americans most likely know February 2nd as Groundhog Day, a quirky event marked by weather prognostications by groundhogs such as Punxsutawney Phil. But February 2nd is also Candlemas, a much older tradition than either Groundhog Day or the Super Bowl. Candlemas has religious significance for Christians, and marks the traditional end of the Christmas season. To help you learn more about the holiday and to give you some ideas on how to celebrate it with your family, Sparrow Tree Square has gathered some great resource links.
Page with information on the religious background of the holiday, folk traditions, some poems and rhymes, and recipes for traditional foods.
A more simply written article on the religious background of Candlemas, making it great for sharing with children, and information on Candlemas weather lore and superstitions.
Information on pagan origins and influences on the celebration of Candlemas, information on the related holidays of Imbolc and the feast of St. Brigid, and suggestions for ways to mark Candlemas.
Candlemas is also celebrated in France as Chandeleur, and About.com's French Language section has an article on the French celebration of Candlemas and the French tradition of making crepes for Chandeleur.
If you read French, you'll also want to check out Momes.net's mini dossier on Chandeleur, which includes information on the origin of Chandeleur, recipes for crepes, activities and games for Chandeleur, and songs and rhymes about Chandeleur.