Believe it or not, for many years in the Soviet Union, January 1 was an ordinary working day. Only on December 23, 1947, a decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Council was issued, according to which January 1 became a holiday.
In 1970, for the first time, the citizens of the USSR were congratulated by the head of the country, Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev. And in 1936, the CEC, Mikhail Ivanovich Kalinin, spoke on the radio. But his congratulations were not addressed to the entire Soviet people, but exclusively to polar explorers heroically drifting in high latitudes.
In 1935, the head of the Soviet Komsomol, Aleksandr Kosarev, published an article in the newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda, in which he urged to celebrate New Year's trees cheerfully "without allowing any kind of reports at these evenings."
But at the end of 1991, when the Soviet Union collapsed, the famous satirist Mikhail Zadornov was entrusted to congratulate compatriots on the holiday.
It was not easy to invite Santa Claus to a house in the USSR. Only the Zarya company had permission to provide such a service, and the main contingent of workers for the holidays was recruited from students of theater schools.
Even in the era of scarcity, New Year's holidays in the USSR could not be imagined without tangerines. And this tradition appeared in 1963, moreover, by decree from above: the country's leadership decided to provide citizens with fresh fruit on the holiday. At this time, tangerines ripened, which were delivered by sea to Leningrad.
Olivier salad was an indispensable decoration of the table. True, it barely resembled the dish that cooked Lucien Olivier in pre-revolutionary Moscow: hazel grouses were replaced with sausage or chicken, gherkins - for pickled cucumbers. But, all the same, this salad remained one of the most beloved in the country.
Since 1956, Soviet polar explorers began their work in Antarctica. Since then, they have developed a tradition to celebrate the New Year twice: Moscow time and local time. True, there are no days off on the icy continent - January 1 is a regular working day there.
In the sixties, television sets appeared in many Soviet families, which, as the postman Pechkin said, became the main decoration of the table. And since 1964, on New Year's Eve, the program "Blue Light" was broadcast with the participation of the most popular artists and actors in the USSR.
And on December 31, 1975, the whole country watched with interest a comedy about the adventures of a drunk doctor Zhenya Lukashin in Leningrad. On the day of the screening, more than 100 million viewers gathered at the TV screen, and next year the film "The Irony of Fate, or Enjoy Your Bath!" became the best according to the readers of the magazine "Soviet Screen".