Globeville's Poles would celebrate with a special dinner on Christmas Eve known as wigilia with mushroom soup, boiled potatoes (kartofle), pickled herring (sledzie), fried fish, pierogi, beans and sauerkraut (groch i kapusta). A lighted candle in the windows symbolized the hope that the Christ child, in the form of a stranger, would come and an extra place was set at the table for the unexpected guest.
Southern Slavs enjoyed homemade wine and delicacies not eaten at other times of the year, such as smoked meats or potica (pronounced po-tee-sa), a Slovenian nut bread.
Using the old Julian calendar, Globeville's Orthodox Slavs observed Christmas on January 7th. Elaborate church services, feasting and visits with family remained the same when the switch was made to the Gregorian calendar in 1968.
Bea Trevino's Hispanic Christmas traditions are those her family observed growing up in New Mexico. "For Christmas and Easter we make meat empanadas. For New Years a lot of us make a chicken mole, or we make menudo with hominy. In New Mexico, we do hominy with ham or pork."
Commemorative Christmas plate, a gift of the Gerhardt Mercantile. Photo Larry Summers.