Atlanta among top cities to celebrate Easter

Easter Sunday is almost here and Atlanta is the place to be.

The city ranked sixth among the top 10 cities nationwide to celebrate Easter, according to a recent survey from Wallethub.

March 28, 2015 Atlanta - Isabella Ying places an Easter egg in her basket after competing in a game of tic-tac-toe during the Spring Egg-stravaganza event at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History in Atlanta on Saturday, March 28, 2015. Treat filled eggs were handed out in different sections of the museum during the event, which also featured a petting zoo, crafts, scavenger hunts and games.  JONATHAN PHILLIPS / SPECIAL

Isabella Ying places an Easter egg in her basket after competing in a game of tic-tac-toe during the Spring Egg-stravaganza event at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History in 2015. JONATHAN PHILLIPS / SPECIAL

Pittsburgh was number one city to celebrate Easter and Hialeah, Fla. was dead last in the rankings of the 100 largest cities based on 13 metrics such as the average price of eggs and the number of Easter egg hunt events per capita.

The analysis even looked at the percentage of the Christian population in each city. Atlanta didn’t crack the top five on that metric, but we ranked third for cities with the most brunch restaurants per capita and fifth for the most flower and gift shops per capita.

Related: In Atlanta: A guide to Easter brunch

The more than 80 percent of adults who plan to celebrate Easter, will spend a combined  $17.3 billion ($146 per person) which is the highest level recorded in the last 13 years, according to data from the National Retail Federation.

Still, despite the sight of Peeps and chocolate bunnies lining the aisles of your local stores, some experts say Easter is no more commercial (and perhaps a bit less commercial) than any other holiday.

Of course, Easter is a religious holiday that for Christians marks the end of Lent and celebrates new beginnings through the resurrection of Christ.

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In some ways, we’ve moved away from that, says Vanessa P. Jackson, chair and professor of Retailing and Tourism Management in the School of Human Environmental Sciences at the University of Kentucky.

“Dressing up for Easter has lost a great deal of its religious significance it might have had and now it is part of showing our prosperity,” said Jackson in an interview with Wallethub, as she acknowledged the increase in Easter spending and the store shelves filled with Easter merchandise.

“The commercialization of Easter helps businesses recoup what was not produced in sales during the harsh winter months and the economy,” she said.

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