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Sticks Day; 11/11; Pepero Day

This Sunday is a special day in S. Korea. It is not a big holiday, but a time when kids have fun.  They are celebrating friendship.  The older people don’t celebrate the holiday because it is a fairly new holiday.  The children, the young people, and the lovers celebrate Sticks Day.

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Here are three different kinds of Pepero Sticks.

In America, on Valentines Day, all the children get paper valentines and give them all out to their classmates. In Korea, on Sticks Day, the children get Pepero Sticks and give them out to their classmates.  The first year I was in Korea, I taught in an elementary school, and all the kids brought me lots of Pepero Sticks on Sticks Day.

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Some of them come with cartoon characters on them to make the kids happy, but they are the same inside as the others.

The young people celebrated it as children, and now that they are young adults, they still give out Pepero Sticks to their friends.  Young couples celebrate it like a Valentines Day, and they try to get nicer Pepero Sticks for their boyfriend, girlfriend, new husband, or new wife.  The older people only celebrate in as much as they make sure the kids have Pepero Sticks and the kids give Pepero Sticks to the older ones like their parents and teachers.

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Every store has a big display of Pepero Sticks on sale this time of year.  This is one we saw at Lotte Mall.

The Japanese have Pepero Sticks too, but they call them Poki Sticks.  They are like a straight, long, hollow pretzel without salt that has chocolate inside, and some have chocolate and other things on the outside.  Most of the Pepero Sticks are small, but they make big ones too.  I actually don’t know if the Japanese also give out Poki Sticks on this day, but I saw Poki Sticks before I saw Pepero Sticks because my Japanese son in law gave them to us.

It is always celebrated on 11/11, November 11 because 11/11 looks like four sticks.  That means this Sunday is Sticks Day in Korea. We have already bought our sticks to give out to the kids at church.

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