Fasnachts are ready for pickup at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Columbia in this file photo from 2020.

Fasnacht Day, known to Lancaster County as the day to eat indulgent, pillowy doughnuts, will be on Feb. 16 this year.

Often misspelled as "fastnacht" and "fassnacht," the word fasnacht itself is German, coming from the words "fasten" (to fast), and "nacht" (night).

Fasnacht Day is always celebrated on Shrove Tuesday — the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday; it's an informal holiday rooted in Pennsylvania Dutch history.

Traditionally, in Christian denominations that observe Lent, Shrove Tuesday was meant as a means of celebrating with indulgent foods, using up one's remaining sugar and lard, before fasting season. Shrove Tuesday is also known as Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras.

Check back with LNP | LancasterOnline for a list of places to get fasnachts this year.

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