Spring Equinox brings new change, new season

On March 20, 2021, the spring equinox marked the end of winter and the first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere. Additionally, it brought exactly twelve hours of daylight and twelve hours of darkness—an equal amount of day and night for one twenty-four-hour day.

The spring equinox occurs when the ecliptic and the celestial equators intersect, causing the Earth’s axis to not be tilted toward or away from the sun. This results in a nearly equal amount of light and darkness at all latitudes, which also applies to the autumn equinox. 

The recognition of the spring equinox dates back to 3000 BC at Stonehenge. At Stonehenge, Druids and pagans congregated to watch the sunrise on the equinox and welcome the spring season.

Even now, some countries still recognize the spring equinox with celebrations. For example, Iran marks the equinox as the start of their new year with a two-week Persian festival called Nowruz. During Nowruz, Iranians prepare a Haft-Seen table, which is an arrangement of seven symbolic items that features a variety of foods to symbolize beauty, good health, patience and prosperity. It also includes spring flowers and seeds that symbolize rebirth.

Although most countries do not celebrate the equinox, they still acknowledge it as the first day of spring and the end of the winter season. Considering this change, many people are anticipating what spring has to offer as it brings warmer weather.

Sophomore Emma Bowman expressed her excitement for the new season by explaining, “I enjoy the sunshine, warmer weather and the longer days. I also enjoy the pretty flowers and the Easter season. During the spring I play lacrosse, and I am able to go on walks with my dog and spend more time outside.”

In addition to being able to enjoy the warmer weather, many people will also be preparing for spring cleaning and changing out their wardrobe to adjust to the warmer weather. Some may even change their hair and clothing styles to show that a new season means a new change.

As much as people are excited to get outside more, COVID-19 will be impacting how everyone will be spending their time outside. Even though people are less likely to contract the virus outside versus inside, it is advisable to continue to exercise caution.

Bowman also provides helpful advice by saying, “I think if we wear our masks and practice social distancing, we can still enjoy the things spring has to offer like going to parks, going fishing and riding bikes.”

Take some time to appreciate how the spring equinox brings longer days and warmer weather! Despite COVID-19, everyone will be able to get outside more and still enjoy this new season and new change.