One of the oldest tradition at Dumbravita, a commune with ancient habits, is ?The Christmas Tree?, a practice old ?as the world?, performed by the youths bands of the village. The Fir?s Ritual The mayor Zachiu Popa attends every year this feast starting on Saint Nicholas, along with the members of his family. ?The local boys form two bands: on the hill and on the valley. Every band chose its leader and start searching for the tree at least one week before Christmas. The tree must be high and uniform, the most imposing tree in the wood. Its transportation in the locality is not an easy job; they carefully carry it on slays till their leader?s house where they start to ornate it?.
The ethno-folklorist Ion Pumnea says the girls have a very important job within the
custom. They ornate the lying down fir with shinning adornment, in order to make it look rich. At noon, the both bands gather in the middle of the village. ?Last year, they adorned only one tree, as a unit sign, on a special spot, so that it could be seen by the whole community? Ion Pumnea declared.
The Hoist Ceremony
The visitors are marvelled by the ceremony. The tree is hoisted bare-handed by the youths helped by the mature men of the community, without using any kind of equipment. The ceremony is accompanied by traditional music; all the community is invited to dance around the tree.
After the ceremony, the groups split and the two bands start to sing carols, visiting every house The tree illuminated by powerful coloured lamps remains adorned till the Lent, to mark the period between Christmas and Easter. The fir is set down on Lent, when the weddings are prohibited.