The Origins and Purpose of Spring Break

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The origins of spring break are varied. This article will discuss its history in places like Greece, Rome, Fort Lauderdale and Colombia. There are many myths surrounding the origins of spring break and some of these are even based on actual history. Regardless of the origin, spring break is an annual event that is cherished by millions of college students. Learn about the history and purpose of spring break to get the inside scoop on how spring break came to be.

Origins in Greece
The origins of spring break in Greece are as old as the Greeks themselves. In ancient Greece, men and women of “mate-able” age celebrated spring and the god Dionysus. The festival included drinking and dancing, and even contests to see who could drain the most wine. The idea of spring break has a similar appeal today as it did in ancient Greece. Whether it originated from the Greeks or not, the festival is a fascinating insight into the history of the spring break.

Origins in Rome
Spring break was celebrated in Ancient Greece and Rome, and was closely associated with the celebration of Dionysus and Bacchus, gods of spring and fertility. In ancient Rome, spring was celebrated with “Anthestreria” celebrations that last three days, which included drinking, dancing, and covering oneself in flowers. Today, spring break is celebrated across the globe, from the chilly shores of New Hampshire to the sweltering heat of California.

Origins in Fort Lauderdale
Glendon Swarthout, an English professor from Michigan State University, overheard college students discussing their spring break plans while on a lecture tour in Fort Lauderdale. After reading about the spring break rituals and lingo, Swarthout decided to follow along. He documented spring break traditions and captured the lingo for a fictional novel. Swarthout’s article and book have helped shape the image of spring break in Fort Lauderdale.

Origins in Colombia
While you’re on spring break this year, consider traveling to Colombia. This beautiful Latin American country has a lot to offer, including Caribbean-style islands. Visitors will enjoy the beautiful scenery, delicious food, and friendly locals. They will also be able to enjoy the seemingly endless summer sun. Here are a few ideas for fun-filled spring breaks in Colombia. And, don’t forget to check out the newest airline service to the country.

Origins in Spain
The origins of spring break in Spain are somewhat unclear. Although many American students take their annual spring break to Spain, Spanish schoolchildren have no spring break. The Spanish celebrate Holy Week, which includes a week-long holiday. In the United Kingdom, spring break takes place over two to four weeks, whereas Spanish students take their Easter break. This holiday is also referred to as Easter half-term. The term spring break is used to describe activities that students engage in during the holiday period.

Origins in the United States
While the modern term “spring break” can be traced back to the 1930s, it is believed that the first Spring Break took place in Florida. This town, Fort Lauderdale, was chosen by a swimming coach from Colgate College because the team needed training for the upcoming swim season. Two years later, Fort Lauderdale hosted the first official spring break. As the name suggests, Fort Lauderdale was a popular spring break destination for college students.

Alternative spring break programs
Alternative spring break programs offer a unique opportunity to get away from the pressures of school and work. The purpose of these trips is to create opportunities for students to develop independence and self-sufficiency, while also fostering social and environmental awareness. Students can choose a trip based on its geographical location or the theme of the trip. Some programs require participants to pay a fee. Alternative Breaks programs have countless fundraising efforts, so scholarship funds can be an essential component of a student’s experience.

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