Masked Party
Fun for Everyone

Nigeria is a very diverse country, with many distinct cultures that all have their own traditions and celebrations. New Years’ is a celebration that brings everyone together. Throughout the country, people gather to watch plays, wrestle and enjoy masked parties. These masked events often involve men in the community wearing animal masks and parading through the streets. They dance or act out little stories, and people are meant to come together and celebrate the New Year in a light-hearted way.

Other cultures also celebrate the New Years with masked parties. Such parties allow people to hide their identity, which can lead to hijinks. It is also a way to put everyone in the community on equal footing for one night since it makes everyone look the same. Being a little silly and stepping out of our normal routines helps everyone spend some time thinking about what they want for the coming year.

This year is a great time to throw a masked party at home. Here are some suggestions to get you started:

  • Decorate some simple paper masks. Printable masks can be found all over the internet, and if you would like to look like an animal check out Discovery Gateway’s bunny mask or come into the museum and make a mask in our STEAM Lab during New Year’s week.
  • Perform a small play, wearing masks to represent different characters.
  • Make some yummy treats! A lot of cultures have lucky food that they eat for New Years. For example, in Germany they gift Marzipan pigs or in the Southern United States people might eat black-eyed peas for luck.
  • Listen to music and dance
  • Do a good deed for your neighbor. Wearing a mask(or maybe performing your act of kindness under the cover of darkness) is a great way to perform a secret act of kindness. Shoveling snow, dropping off treats or a gift is a great way to start the year off right.
  • Make some noise! At midnight go with noisemakers and celebrate with people throughout your time zone!