What are some of your favorite holiday traditions? Do you decorate the house each year? Maybe someone reads the "Twas the Night Before Christmas" poem on Christmas Eve or perhaps it's mom making your favorite dessert for your holiday dinner.

There is one holiday tradition that started and almost ended right here in New York State. Are you familiar with the Peppermint Pig?

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Picture the Victorian village of Saratoga Springs in the 1800's. The Grand Union Parlor, Clarendon Hotel, horse and buggies riding through Congress Park and candy shops up and down Broadway.

In some cultures the pig symbolizes abundance, happiness and a bit of a lucky charm. Saratoga.com suggests that the Saratoga candy makers of the 1800's wanted to create a fun and festive treat, in the shape of a pig, to celebrate the holidays and bring prosperity to New York. That's how the Peppermint Pig was born.

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During World War II production of the Peppermint Pig came to a halt and some feared this would become a forgotten New York tradition. In 1988 the treat was brought back to life and continues to be carried by Saratoga Candy Company to this day.

So, what do you do with the Peppermint Pig? You smash it! Each Peppermint Pig comes with a velvet bag and metal hammer. Place the pig inside the bag and take turns hitting the pig with the hammer. Each person eats the piece they broke off and let the good fortune begin!

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