Wedding is a BIG day. Not every day you decide to spent the rest of your life with one person. It takes a lot of time, effort and money to plan the perfect day. Celebrated across the world, weddings differ from country to country. From old traditions to new additions. Polish weddings are certainly one of the most fun events to attend. Filled with traditional Polish food, vodka, games and a lot more! Here's ten top reasons what makes a Polish wedding so special.
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The majority of the population in Poland is Catholic. Therefore, many still follow the religious customs. Traditional Polish wedding takes place early afternoon on Saturday. Controversial to the common belief that the groom shouldn’t see the bride before the wedding; in Poland once they’re both dressed up, both of their parents would meet them at the house to give them their blessings. Then it’s off to church for the exchange of vows.
1. The Gate
When neighbours or friends know the couple is on their way to get married, they purposely block the road for them. Although less popular nowadays, people in small towns and villages still tend to set it up. So-called gate (‘brama’ in Polish) is made of people or some kind of barricades. These tend to be quite creative and funny. They won’t let the couple pass the gate until they receive a bottle of vodka. Sometimes, in addition there’s a challenge for the couple to complete. It’s one of the first test for the soon-to-be husband and wife to get through on their new journey together. As soon as the couple successfully pass the gate, it’s time for the ceremony at the church.
2. Money Shower
During the ceremony, there will be a mass and exchange of the vows. At the end, as soon as the new husband and wife exits the church, friends and family shower them with rice and/or cents. The couple has to collect the money from the ground. This is meant to bring happy and prosperous life to the newlyweds.
Now that the ceremony is over, it’s time for the party! All the guests are invited to continue Polish wedding celebrations in a restaurant. Transport is always provided for those who need one. Guests can say their best wishes to the couple in front of the church or at the restaurant. A card filled with money inside is usually given. Some may also choose to additionally give flowers or a bottle of wine.
3. Bread And Salt Blessing… And A Shot Of Vodka!
One of the oldest polish wedding tradition with bread salt and vodka is once everyone arrives and before the couple enters the party venue, their parents present slightly salted bread. Bread is offered so that the couple may never experience hunger in their household, while salt reminds them of life’s difficulties and the importance of getting through them. The newlyweds will take a small bite, followed by a shot of vodka. Once downed, the couple need to throw the shot glasses behind their backs. If they break, it’s a sign of good luck.
4. Traditional Polish Wedding Food
Poles are very hospitable and they take pride in their traditional food. At the start of the reception, there will be a Polish wedding toast for the couple and the first meal of the day. First dish is always a traditional Polish chicken soup – to warm up your gut for all the alcohol you will consume later on. Second dish usually includes meat, potatoes and selection of salads. Thirdly, there will be a dessert which might be an ice cream with fruits. After the first meal, the couple will have their first dance and later invite all the guests to join them on the dance floor. Over the course of the party, guests will be served another three warm dishes. Don’t worry about getting hungry in-between meals. The tables are filled with cakes, fruits and soft drinks. Additionally, there are buffet tables on the side with a range of different Polish delicacies.
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