Sunday, July 28, 2013
July 26, 2013 Pierogi Fest
I have known about Pierogi Fest for years. I heard the Polka Parade was a good time. Besides that, I had no idea what to expect as Chrissy & I entered Pierogi Fest for the first time. We enjoyed the whole evening. The town of Whiting does a great job of creating a fun atmosphere for the huge crowds that fill 119th Street. Sometimes I believe that 21st Century Americans have forgotten how to laugh at themselves. Tonight was an exception to my belief. Sure this festival is a celebration of all things Polish, but with a twist. There was a lot of good natured fun directed at Polish stereotypes. Maybe the world would be a better place if everyone could just laugh at themselves more often. I had fun tonight spending time with people of many different nationalities, religious backgrounds and possibly differing political ideologies, because everyone was there to enjoy a night filled with smiles, laughter and a friendly hello for strangers eating pierogis next to you.
We saw this group as soon as we walked under the "Welcome to Pierogi Fest" banner. I knew this was going to be a good time. The dad is wearing shirt that reads "Hey Nice Pierogis".
There were 'nice pierogis' everywhere...
...along with potato pancakes, blintzes and much more...
...I started out with a combo plate.
Then I got more pierogis. After eating we walked around the festival before finding a spot to watch the parade. Here's a few of the things we saw.
...food everywhere and not exactly healthy food, the closest thing that I saw to a salad was the stuffed cabbage...
...some historical quotes that I must have been taught wrong in school. "Give me your hungry, yearning for pierogi" by Stoshu Liberty
"Give me pierogi or give me death" by P. Henry
My purple haired Polish Princess, after she ate the better part of a foot long polish sausage, waiting for the parade to start...
...so was this little guy who enjoyed standing in the middle of a closed street.
Here's my pictures of the very entertaining Polka Parade. This parade reminded me of Coney Island's Mermaid Parade. Most of the marchers were just groups of people looking to have fun and entertain the crowd with their crazy ideas and costumes. Both parades have a lot of interaction between the marchers and the viewing public. I had a great time at both parades this year.
This group where riding a rollercoaster down the street.
My only shot of the famous Mr. Pierogi, Ms. Paczki & Halupki Guy (green thing on the left)
The Pieroguettes, each one is a different flavored pierogi as described by their hats.
Buscias (Polish for grandmother) were everywhere, this group with their housecoats, cleaning supplies and babushkas exaggerating the Polish cleaning woman look.
The 2013 Pierogi Cup Champions, the Whiting Blackhawkskis...
...followed by their 'sexy' ice crew girls.
The Hammond Tech Tigers all wearing babushkas.
It's not a real parade without Pipes & Drums.
Here are the players from the 'Cal Ripped One' League.
The Dancing Buscias..
...performing with their walkers.
I missed their banner, maybe they are supposed to be the Whihala Beach lifeguards. This guy has a different way of performing CPR.
the 'Body By Pierogi' float
The Griswold 'Vacation' car with a dead Buscia on top.
Buscias on bikes. A little side story. I used to work in the building next to the Warsaw Inn back in the 1980's. Every morning all year round, a large Polish woman would ride her bike to work at the Warsaw Inn. This reminded me of her. They still have the best pierogis there.
The Peddlin' Polocks Mobile Bar. There is a bartender steering and serving drinks in the middle. This would be a fun way to do the L.A.T.E. Ride.
A crowd favorite, the Biker Ballet.
Their only move seemed to be an amusing pirouette followed by a pelvic thrust.
I wasn't sure if they were real nuns or not. There is a Dunk A Nun event at Pierogi Fest...
...a high fiving, rollerblading nun, times have changed.
The Polish Precision Mower Team. Here's Yonko Deerski and his Polish Riding Mower...
...followed by his very popular with the crowd, Mower Team...
...with Stanley Cup bring up the rear.
There are no words to describe this.
We watched the parade on 119th St east of Indianapolis Blvd. Since the street was blocked off we followed the end of the parade into Pierogi Fest west of Indianapolis Blvd.
Just like the old days in the homeland, this stage lost power in the middle of a song they wrote about Pierogi Fest.
Of course there was a Polka Band, they had people dancing in the street.
A supposed Cajun food booth had alligator pierogis, you'd think they would know how to spell alligator and maybe misspell pierogi. Either way the line was too long so I didn't try one.
Now I know some of you are thinking that Pierogi Fest is a low brow event. You think so what, a doughy dumpling filled with potato...what's the big deal? For you food snobs that wouldn't stoop so low on the cultural ladder, here's proof that the pierogi can be upper class.
Even the Baptist Church joined in all the pierogi fun this weekend.
So that's our Pierogi Fest night. Yes I cheated and took this on our way into Pierogi Fest but the light was better then. Here's your chance to plan to attend next year...I'll meet you there.