High School Reunion in a WASP Village

Reunion Group Shot

“The Polish-American last names staggered me,” said Ann Corson, my high school French teacher, at the 50th reunion of the Armada High School “Class of ’66,” August 20, 2016, at the AmVets Hall in Armada, Michigan. Armada was her first teaching job out of college, and it surprised me that she would remember that, of [...]

Chicago’s Polish Population Plummets

Anyone who shops in Chicago’s heavily Polish neighborhoods, as I do, knows the joy of Andy’s Deli and the Red Apple buffet, but it is also clear that for more than a decade the demographics of these Polish neighborhoods have been changing dramatically. Poles who are in America to stay are moving to the suburbs [...]

Chicago Salvation Army Store to Celebrate Polish Heritage Day with Appearance by Wanda Urbanska

Wanda Urbanska & Leonard Kniffel

The Salvation Army in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood will celebrate the third anniversary of the transformation of its family store at 2270 North Clybourn on July 23 with a host of special programs, food, sales, a fashion show and celebrity guests including my friend and colleague, author and sustainability advocate Wanda Urbanska, and Chicago street [...]

My Sister’s Mother: Book Launches at Polish Museum

You could hear a pin drop at the Polish Museum of America as Donna Solecka Urbikas introduced her new book to a crowd of friends and colleagues Sunday, May 22. My Sister’s Mother has been a long labor of love for the first-time author, the carefully recorded and documented story of her mother and sister [...]

My First Mass Mob: Save St. Adalbert Church

It’s not so much the ornate interior, nor the spiraling exterior surrounded by scaffolding, it’s the history and the legacy that drew a “mass mob” of some 200 people to St. Adalbert, one of Chicago’s oldest Catholic churches, for a Sunday mass in Polish today, April 3, coincidentally my late mother’s birthday. She would have [...]

Previous Posts

Waiting for Olivia de Havilland
07.05.2016
Seven Hours in Tehran
07.04.2016
A Polish Son in Egypt
07.03.2016
Eroica, the Postwar Classic Is a Tough Watch
06.27.2016