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Lesson Transcript

Hi everyone, I'm Alisha.
Christmas Day is celebrated on the 25th of December in the United States. Though it is a religious holiday for Christians, it's also a popular holiday with non-Christians, as well. Parades, gift giving, holiday displays, and lights galore mark the arrival of Christmas in the United States. It's a federal holiday and is observed by every US state.
A famous American city associated with the American Revolution was not big on celebrating Christmas until the middle of the 1800s. Can you guess which one?
We’ll show you the answer at the end of this video.
Christmas in the US involves a great many types of celebration. For Christians, it means church services and social gatherings. Even people who do not celebrate the religious aspects of the holiday tend to enjoy gift giving, having family gatherings, and feasting together. For students, it means a long break from school or college and is a popular time to go home and visit family.
Putting colorful lights on one's house is a very popular way to celebrate Christmas in the US. Being the darkest time of year in the northern hemisphere, the holiday turns into a celebration of lights, with complex—and sometimes very expensive—displays decorating homes. Competitions for the best lighting setup are fun and common ways to celebrate the holiday!
The Christmas tree is another popular Christmas tradition in the US. Artificial or natural, it's common to see a conifer tree decorating the living room of most homes. The trees are decorated with colorful lights and with ornaments that are oftentimes also family heirlooms. There's also a National Christmas Tree in the US, which is lit up by the president at the beginning of December.
Christmas songs are very popular, as well. There are traditional songs such as "Silent Night" and "The Twelve Days of Christmas", along with many others. It was once common to see carolers go door to door to sing Christmas carols, but now it's a rarity.
And now here's the answer to the quiz.
Do you know what famous American city associated with the American Revolution was not big on celebrating Christmas until the middle of the 1800s?
The Puritan Pilgrims who settled in New England did not approve of the celebration of Christmas. It was actually banned in Boston until the late 1600s. Even after the ban was lifted, Christmas in Boston didn't become popular until the middle of the 1800s! Today, Boston is lit up as much as is any other city during Christmas.
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In what ways is Christmas celebrated in your country?
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Until next time!