Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Polish and German Church Festivals in Detroit, MI

Church festivals and picnics are a great way to connect with your roots. What better time is there to visit your family's ancestral parish? Many churches offer tours and photo opportunities for the public and are more than happy to answer your questions. If your ancestors were Polish and immigrated to Detroit, they most likely belonged to one of the core parishes in the city.

The month of August offers the opportunity to visit several of those core parishes during their annual fund raising events. This is a great opportunity to visit the churches your
grandparents or great grandparents attended regularly. And there's no better time to support these historic churches with a donation to their restoration and maintenance funds. You won't even feel the pinch in your wallet when you taste the luscious ethnic foods! So come on down and enjoy the fun!

Sunday, August 6, 2006

Saint Joseph Catholic Church presents and Old Fashioned German Picnic on the church grounds at 1828 Jay Street at the corner of Orleans (just across Gratiot from the Eastern Market) in Detroit. The picnic begins at 1:00 pm after the Noon Sunday Mass. There will be church tours featuring their magnificent organ and six hand rung steeple bells. The picnic menu will feature grilled bratwursts, hamburgers, hot dogs, German potato salad, sauerkraut, baked beans, chips, ice cream, and strudel. Also being served are imported beers from Germany, domestic beers on tap, pop, water, and coffee. (313) 831-6659

St. Louis the King Catholic Church is having their 26th Annual Peach Festival from 12 Noon till 8 pm. They're located at 18891 St. Louis Street, in Detroit (7 Mile Rd. 2 blocks east of Mound). They'll have live music from 2-7 pm, a bake sale, country store, peach booth, doll booth, pop and ice cream stand, and beer. Their menu features chicken, meatballs, potatoes, sauerkraut, vegetable, bread, coffee or tea and dessert is included. Kielbasa & sauerkraut is also available. Guarded parking is available. (313) 891-1766

Saturday and Sunday, August 12 & 13, 2006

Sweetest Heart of Mary Catholic Church, at 4440 Russell St. (at the corner of Canfield) in Detroit, is having their Annual Pierogi Festival! The festival, on the parish grounds, is open Saturday from 5 pm to 9 pm and Sunday from 12 Noon to 9 pm. Pierogi and chicken dinners are available both days along with nalesniki, beer & spirits, and a snack & soda bar. There's a Polka Mass at 4 pm on Saturday and live Polka bands playing at the festival both days. The Halka Dancers will make an appearance on Saturday and the Wawel Dancers will be there on Sunday. It's a family event so bring the kids! They'll have a moon walk, magic show, clown, and face painting for the youngsters and games of chance, 50/50 raffles, a grand raffle, bingo, blackjack, vegas wheel, beer & spirits, and church tours for the adults. Guarded parking is available and the Detroit Police officers love to visit this event! (313) 831-6659

Pierogi Festival 2004

Cookin' up those yummy chicken dinners!

Care for a game of chance?

Kids love the Moon Walk!

Grab a partner and dance the Polka!

When you get tired, pull up a chair and watch how the youngsters do it ;-)

Saturday August 19, 2006

The Polish-American Historical Site Association (PAHSA), an organization taking on the preservation of St. Albertus Church, the oldest Polish-Catholic Church in Detroit, is excited to announce the inception of the second annual St. Albertus Fest on-site their historic campus. This musical extravaganza is set to take place on Saturday, August 19, 2006, from 1:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.

The music festival features two stages filled throughout the day with an eclectic mix of Detroit’s finest bands. From gypsy jazz to garage rock and folk to hip-hop, it is difficult to find a genre that is not represented.

Booked as part of the annual Detroit International Jazz Fest this fall and recently a guest of 101.9 WDET’s “real jazz” show, the Ed Love Program, Hot Club of Detroit plays traditional jazz from the 20's, 30's, and 40's with a European-Django-Rienhardt Gypsy twist. Kicking off the festival’s Main Stage, Hot Club of Detroit takes the stage at 2 p.m.

Hairshirt move beyond the basement of free-form noise and the crunch of the garage into an area of catchy, intensely beautiful songs that maintain a certain 80's post-punk edge. Supporting their recent release, Lover Politican, on the Contraphonic record label, Hairshirt performs just after the sun goes down.

Fans of Detroit’s The Sights, will enjoy a rare and intimate performance by front man Eddie Baranek at the Canfield Stage. Eddie Baranek and Friends will take the stage 6:30 p.m.

With a much anticipated release and beautifully recorded full-length album on the way, supported by local label Suburban Sprawl, Rescue performs well written and wonderfully executed songs as a five piece complete-with-violin-and-keys band. Perfect as a summer-evening treat for your ears; be sure to catch Rescue at 6 p.m. on the main stage.

Playing their first show in over 10 years to a sold out crowd at a local venue last winter, Pittbull can be found on the main stage at 10 p.m. for their second show in over ten years. These Detroit hardcore legends hardly ever play, so, if you’re into hardcore “punk” rock, you may not have the chance to witness their insanity again anytime soon.

Other featured performers include the award winning and always inspiring to see live San Francisco-meets-Detroit hip hop group Dubphonics; the bluegrass inspired soulful vocal harmonies and strings of Catfish Mafia; Detroit Music Award winner for “outstanding folk artist” Audra Kubat, all female rockers Helen; eastside up and coming fresh-out-of high school The Decks; an acoustic performance by Tiny Steps’ front man Eric Weir, This is This featuring Sean Nader; and others including solo artist Gretchen Wolfe and United Audio Works.

Soxy Promotions in conjunction with PAHSA are hosting the event. Gates open at 1:00 p.m. and live performances will run straight through until 11:00 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door, of which 100% of the proceeds will go towards renovations of the historical site. This event is all ages; ice-cold alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase by those aged 21 and over. Traditional Polish food from local vendors and barbecued fare will be sold on the premises. Tours of the historical St. Albertus Church will be given.

For further information, please contact event promoter Andrea Sox at or (313)574-0493

About the Polish-American Historic Site Association (PASHA)
PAHSA is the owner and caretaker of the St. Albertus Church complex, which has been a national historic site since 1972. The Mission of PAHSA is to preserve the St. Albertus Church and properties as a Museum of Cultural History. Emphasis on the continuance of Polish Catholic traditions and remembrance of Polish-American history has been paramount.

A current focus of PAHSA has been to increase awareness of St. Albertus outside the Polish community. PAHSA believes that the historical significance of these structures are self-evident; therefore increasing awareness is essential. At its inception, PAHSA stated the importance of educating all cultures in the Polish tradition in order to promote an atmosphere where all cultures can come together to share with each other their distinctiveness and individuality. The St. Albertus Music Festival is a prime example of this philosophy. For more information about PAHSA, please contact Matt Baka at (313) 657-4145.

The heat wave is about to break and summer is slipping away so get outside and enjoy your ethnic roots!