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Easter basket

Source: Jackie Wright / Getty

via money/By BRAD TUTTLE :

Easter is a very big deal in the U.S., and it’s hardly just about religion. Slightly more than half of Americans say they will go to church on Easter, according to a National Retail Federation survey, while 87% of parents will have Easter baskets for their children on the holiday. (More than eight in 10 parents say they’ll eat some of their kids’ Easter candy as well.)

Here are some of the weird, wonderful, and surprising facts about celebrating and spending on Easter.

Total Easter Spending Is Rising Sharply:

Traditional Easter Decorations Display, Kmart, NYC, 2013.

The National Retail Federation estimates that Americans will collectively spend $17.3 billion on clothing, food, decorations, and other holiday items this Easter, up from $16.4 billion last year. We’ll spend $2.4 billion strictly on candy for the holiday, up from an estimated $2.2 billion last Easter. Meanwhile, surveys conducted for the International Council of Shopping Centers show that millennials will spend more money on Easter than other age groups—an average of $177, compared with $127 among Gen Xers and $114 by Baby Boomers.

America Is Supposed to Be Eating Less Holiday Chocolate…:

chocolate bunny stabbed with carrot

A few years ago, the market research firm Euromonitor forecast that chocolate sales for special seasons—Halloween, Christmas, Easter—would rise steadily in Europe and soar in Latin America due to a growing middle class of the largely Christian population that celebrates the two religious holidays. It’s a different story in the U.S.A., however, where per-capita chocolate sales were forecast to decrease 9% between 2012 and 2017, “primarily due to obesity concerns over a product which is typically high in sugar.”

There Are Easter Eggs That Cost Around $35,000:

Choccywoccydoodah Fabergé-style egg

A designer chocolatier in the U.K. called Choccywoccydoodah is selling Faberge-style edible eggs featuring dragons and other mythical creatures for £25,000 apiece, roughly the equivalent of $35,000.

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