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Ukrainians in Colorado Springs celebrate tradition of decorating Ukrainian Easter eggs

Pysanky Easter egg workshop highlights Ukrainian tradition
Posted at 5:11 PM, Apr 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-15 22:04:42-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues into Easter weekend, Ukrainians in the Colorado Springs community are highlighting the tradition of decorating Easter eggs.

In the Ukrainian culture, decorating Pysanky easter eggs is a spring tradition for many families. This year, it has that much more meaning because of the war in Ukraine.

On Friday, a local Ukrainian hosted a workshop at Kinship Landing to teach others about this art form.

Pysanky Easter eggs are small pieces of artwork, with intricate designs and vibrant colors.

“It's super intricate, and actually, all the eggs represent different regions of Ukraine, different designs, different regions of Ukraine,” said Natasha Westcott, a Ukrainian who attended the workshop. “It's absolutely beautiful and something that you want to treasure and keep.”

Dina Nazarchuk hosted the Pysanky workshop. She and her family immigrated to the United States in 2001 when she was 13 years old.

“This tradition goes way back for Ukrainians and it’s a way of writing a letter to someone during the Easter season through the images of the Easter egg,” said Nazarchuk. “So it is definitely special to do this workshop right now and just remember the traditions of Ukraine and what our ancestors did.”

Nazarchuk said she still has family, loves ones, and friends in Ukraine, so what’s happening still hits close to home.

“My entire dad's family is still in Ukraine. I have a lot of friends there. I know people serving in army right now. I know people volunteering, and helping evacuate people, and bringing food for people, and also bringing blankets for bomb shelters,” said Nazarchuk. “Our hearts are still with Ukraine, it's our homeland.”

As the war continues, many said decorating these Ukrainian eggs has even more meaning on this Easter weekend in recognizing and honoring Ukrainian culture.

“I remember doing some of this with my grandmother years and years ago and it's just amazing that people are coming together and supporting our local Ukrainian community,” said Westcott. “It’s just amazing to see these people together, celebrating and learning this cultural exchange.”

Westcott also has family and loves ones in Ukraine that have been impacted by the war.

“We always think that this happened always in the past in the past, and now it's happening to your relatives, and it’s heartbreaking. But it’s very meaningful and it's incredible to see Americans just in love with the Ukrainian people right now. It’s really uplifting for the people in Ukraine.”

The Pysanky Easter eggs are a combination of hot wax, colorful dye, and a little bit of patience. But these eggs are artwork supporting the people of Ukraine and what’s happening overseas.

“The more awareness we can bring, hopefully, there can be some change in some steps taken to stop the war that's happening in Ukraine right now,” said Nazarchuk.

It takes at least two to three hours to decorate Ukrainian eggs. There's also another workshop happening tomorrow, Saturday 4/15, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Registration ahead of time is required.

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