Archive for March, 2003

Tradition of drowning “Marzanna”

Saturday, March 1st, 2003

On March 21st, the first day of spring, in many Polish cities and towns one can see groups of children traveling in different directions. Could they be celebrating the official day for “skipping school”, very popular in Poland, providing freedom from the burden of studying? Maybe so, but many groups of children are accompanied by their teachers, and they are on their way to a river, lake, or pond to drown a “Marzanna”.

“Marzanna” is a doll symbolizing the bad, long winter. She is made of straw, hay, cardboard, and rags. Dressed in a colorful skirt or dress with a scarf on her head, she is placed on top of a long stick and later is drowned in the river or lake. Children carrying “Marzanna’ participate in a colorful parade singing songs. The last person in the parade is a child carrying “Gaik”. “Gaik” is a symbol of spring. It is a tree branch decorated with ribbons and artificial flowers. Drowning “Marzanna” in a rive, lake, or pond is accompanied with the singing or saying of the following words: “Marzanna, Marzanna, Swim across the seas. Let flowers bloom, And fields turn green.” Tradition of drowning “Marzanna” goes back many centuries.

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Polish American Cultural Center honoring Pope John Paul II Plans for the Future

Saturday, March 1st, 2003

We have already achieved a good measure of success in a relatively short time, but we do not intend to rest on our laurels. We have set goals for the future that are very ambitious but well thought out and planned.

Here is a summary of our plans:

— The Center is cooperating with Pulaski Franciscan Development Corporation under the direction of Father Michael Surufka and the patronage of Bishop Pilla to rejuvenate the Warszawa District in Slavic Village. Specifically, we refer to 65 th Street from St. Stanislaus Church to Lansing Avenue, where our Center is located.

— We have organized “Panel Discussions” composed of experts who will discuss topics in various fields such as tax issues, legal matters, medical issues, investment strategies etc. The first panel has already taken place. The subsequent panels will be held the first Tuesday of each month at 7:00 PM at the Center.

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