The Longest Night
The Alurizan Republic is a testament to the power of cooperation, mutual aid, and reason. By leveraging the skills of an accepting community it seems almost nothing is impossible. The guiding ethos of Alurizan culture, the Root Logic, started simply as a strateg to resist annihilation, and developed into a shared realization amongst the founding species that their former squabbles amounted to nothing compared to a true existential threat.
The Longest Night Celebration focuses on the time of the Harbor's winter solstice, as the Harbor is the center of the Republic. At this point, the name of the holiday is largely symbolic: as soon as we begin to discuss issues that span across multiple planets, the particular climate of one given planet becomes irrelevant. While there are nearly endless variations of the holiday across the diverse cultures of AREZ, there are some unifying tenets among them.
The Longest Night is a celebration of perseverance, community, and gratitude. It says: you have passed through the darkest times, you have survived the worst together, your future will only be brighter—just as Aluriza rose from near-destruction to its safety and security today.
There are a few staple traditions that any Alurizan cannot go without during the holiday, with first among them being the bonfires.
In the early days of Aluriza, it was said that many refugees had to survive long periods without access to energy and shelter, and would construct large communal fires. Tired refugees would gather around these fires to share resources, stories, and most importantly keep hope alive. These days, we carry on that tradition by sitting close to the fire and sharing in community, snacks, and hot mugs of various liquids, settling in and staying up to mark the longest night of the year.
Solstice in Owai cannot be complete without the annual winter meteor shower. Visible for a couple weeks but peaking around the Longest Night, the meteor shower has become a treasured solstice tradition. People can be seen gazing skyward at the brilliant azure lights, with the hope of maybe even finding a landed meteorite for themselves. As countless generations of Alurizans watch the same meteor shower each year, a popular folktale as emerged: it's said that someone who stays up all night to count one thousand shooting stars will have their wish granted.