The Blessing of the Easter Baskets

Some 300 people crowded into St. Florian Catholic Church in Hamtramck, Michigan—along with thousands of people in other Polish churches around the world participating in the ritual blessing of Easter baskets. Święconka (Polish pronunciation sounds something like “Shfentsonka”) can be loosely translated as “the day of the blessing of the Easter baskets.” This beloved Polish [...]

Illinois Governor, Chicago Mayor, Dignitaries
Pay Tribute to Pulaski at Polish Museum

“We are a nation of immigrants,” said Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner during the March 5 celebration of Pulaski Day at the Chicago’s Polish Museum of America. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel invoked his own family’s immigration to America and noted, “May Chicago always be a place that welcomes immigrants.” Rauner and Emanuel were among some 20 [...]

Divide and Conquer:
Poland and the Holocaust

Once during my 2005 book tour with A Polish Son in the Motherland, I was speaking and signing books at the Forest Hills branch of the Queens Library in New York. The program was billed as “An Afternoon of Polish Culture” and included a performance by the Polonaise Folk Dance Company. Although my book is [...]

If You Were Starving You’d Eat It

How Polish Food Became French Cuisine “If you were starving you’d eat it,” my mother, the most adventurous eater and cook of all time, would say to me when I turned up my childish nose at just about everything she prepared. I would spend the meal picking out tiny pieces of onion from her meatloaf [...]

In Search of Perfect Pączki

I cannot be in Hamtramck, pączki capital of the world, on this “Pączki Day” (aka Shrove Tuesday or Mardi Gras) so I decided to seek out the best pączek I could find within a three mile radius of my house in Chicago. As most Polish Americans know, pączki are sinfully fat and sweet jelly doughnuts [...]

Previous Posts

Madame Vertu Takes a Walk
Disaster Relief . . . with Books
The Beauty of Sopot
Illinois Governor, Chicago Mayor, Dignitaries
Pay Tribute to Pulaski at Polish Museum