On New Year’s Day, there is a custom taking place, named “Protochroniatika Karavakia” (which means New Years Little Boats) and it is not to be forgotten. Every year on the new year’s eve, groups of children compete for the best creation of miniature ships at the square Vounakiou at the center of Chios.
This tradition has began after the release of the island and goes on until nowadays under the organization of Perigitikis Leschis Chiou and the municipality of Chios in order to honor the Greek armada that set the island free.
The construction of the miniatures begins many months earlier by the groups of children from each district in order to be everything ready on time. Those tasteful miniature ships, made with much labor carry their own names and sometimes may be up to 5 meters long!
Apart from the construction, children prepare the “penemata”, meaning little songs that look alike the carols from Asia Minor and contain wishes for the up-coming year, as well as comic comments regarding to the present politics. At the end, the group that made the best creations is awarded and wander in the neighborhoods of the town with their miniature singing the “penemata”.