The Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center is an open-air folklife museum and research center dedicated to preserving and celebrating Pennsylvania German folk culture, history, and language in a unique educational setting at Kutztown University.

Holiday Traditions

Pennsylvania Dutch Holiday Traditions of the Calendar Year

The rich seasonal customs and annual traditions of the Pennsylvania Dutch blend the Old World liturgical calendar with agricultural traditions and folk-cultural expressions. Although many of the major feast-days are universal in Western cultures, much of the character of these celebrations is American and uniquely Pennsylvanian in flavor. Distinctive foodways, decorations, artistic expression, religious blessings, and ritual traditions form a colorful tapestry winding through the annual progression of the year, reflecting the persistence of the Pennsylvania Dutch community’s vernacular language, cultural identity, and folklife.