Green corn ceremonies have played an important role in the ritual life of the Native American tribes of the southeastern United States. These agricultural rites celebrate the ripening of the corn harvest, marking the New Year and the renewal of all life. Homes and public spaces receive a thorough cleaning, all fires are put out, and old food is eaten. The New Year begins with a priest silently kindling a new flame and offering the first of the ripening corn to celebrate the renewal of all life. A dance and feast follows.