What is Nowruz?
The Zoroastrian New Year Festival is Nowruz, which means "new day."
Nowruz always begins on the first day of spring, and it lasts for 13 days.
A few weeks before the New Year, everyone cleans his/her house.
Troubadours named Haji Firuz dance and sing through streets bringing the news of the coming of spring.
The last Wednesday of the year is called Chahar-shanbeh-suri.
When the evening comes, people lit large bonfires and jump over them.
Children wrap themselves in white sheets and go door to door asking for treats while banging on pots and pans.
It is a tradition to eat Persian noodle soup, fish, and vegetable rice for dinner.
When Nowruz comes, everyone wears clean, new clothes and goes to visit the older members of the family.
After a few days, the older members of the family come to see the younger ones.
The last day of Nowruz is called Seez-de-be-dar.
On this day people go to countryside or parks for a picnic. They play, sing and dance all day.
Haft-seen is a special table set for Nowruz. People put seven different items on the Haft-seen table.
Each item starts with the letter "s" in Persian. The seven items include somagh (sumac), seer (garlic), seeb (apples),
senjed (jujube fruit), sonbol (hyacinth), sabzeh (wheat sprouts), and sekeh (coins).
Each of these items has a symbolic meaning. For example, apple is the symbol of beauty.
Garlic represents health. Wheat sprouts are the symbol of rebirth. Coins are the symbol of wealth.
Besides the seven items, other things are placed on the Haft-seen such as the holy book,
candles, colored eggs, goldfish in a bowl, rose water and a mirror.