Depending on your background, one of these may mean something to you:
- Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday
- Shrove Tuesday
- Pancake Day
- Sledziówka or Pączki Day
These are all various names for the Tuesday before the Christian Ash Wednesday which marks the beginning of Lent. This year that is Tuesday, March 5th. Why is this important for small business? It means a time of celebration before Lent.
Being of Polish decent it is Pączki Day for me. A delicious, wonderful, fruit filled Polish donut. Just like Pancake Day in the UK, where they also use flour, sugar, lard/butter, oil and such, ingredients during traditional Lent not used as often so it was a chance to use it and not waste it.
But what does it mean in more modern times? It is basically seen as a day to partake in things you wouldn’t normally on a Tuesday. We all have seen Mardi Gras. It doesn’t have to go to that extreme, but people dining out may go a little more extravagant in their meal, or might order the dessert. Many people give up sweets or chocolate for Lent, so get their last craving in. Others may give up spending money on clothes for themselves, so one last shopping spree.
It means many different things to people, but usually it is a day of indulging a little more. Whether you are decorating your store with beads, offering some extra sweets, have some fun and maybe reminisce with customers on their family traditions. I know I love talking with others about where they think the best Pączki is from.