Hot to spring into spring


On Tuesday evening March 16, La Plaza Cultural community garden at Ninth St. and Avenue C was the setting for a jump over fire to celebrate spring’s arrival. A prelude to the Persian New Year, the event is part of Chahar Shanbeh Suri, an ancient festival dating back to Iran’s Zoroastrian past. Since the 1979 Islamic revolution, the day has also become one of resistance throughout Iran. On Tuesday, three small fires were lit at sunset, and people bravely hopped over them, as Kourosh Tavakolian, 8, did above. According to tradition, people bound over the fires to face their ultimate fears as an act of cleansing before spring’s start, which was Saturday.