Starting today--well, last night really--we're heading for a small lump of festivals and sacrificial days. I'll give you a quick run-down of them, with links to longer articles. Happy celebrating!

May 18th/20th: On the 19th of Thargelion, an Athenian festival for the Thrakian Goddess Bendis (Βενδις) was held. This festival, which went on into the night of the 20th of the month, was designed especially for Bendis, who was introduced to Attika by Thrakian métoikos who took the opportunity to introduce their Goddess into the Athenian pantheon after the Oracle of Dodona decreed that Thrakian worshippers should be granted the right for ground to build a sanctuary on. Their shrine to Her was built on the hill Mounykhia, near to the temple of Artemis, with whom She was identified. The temenos was completed somewhere before 429 BC, and at least one Thrakian festival to the Goddess was held before the Athenians got involved. Read more here.

May 18th/May19th: A sacrifice to Menedeius was performed by the Attic deme Erchia on the 19th day of the month of Thargelion. Menedeius, or Menedeios (Μενεδάιοσ), means 'the One who stands His ground', but nothing more is known about this God or hero.

May 24th/May 25th (but see article): The 25th of the month of Thargelion marks the day of the Plynteria festival. This minor festival was held solely in Athens and surrounding areas, and was in honor of Athena Polias, Protector of the city. It was considered an auspicious day by the ancient Hellenes, because on this day, they did not have the protection of Athena.

During the Plynteria, the wooden statue of Athena was disrobed of the peplos that She received during the Panathenaia by Her priestesses, veiled, and then taken down to the sea for a wash.

There is another, smaller, festival connected to the Plynteria the Kallunteria, which was celebrated somewhere in the vicinity of the Plynthria. During this festival, the temple of Athena was swept out--the name of the festival means 'sweeping out' or 'to beautify by sweeping'--and cleaned thoroughly, so that the washed statue would have a clean home to return to. The lamp of Her eternal flame was also refilled and relit by the priestesses on this day. Read more about both festivals here.