Grand Rapids’ Polish Festival This Weekend. It’s More than Just Pierogis
Maybe you're saying it or thinking it, too? Summer festivals. Kalamazoo was famous for them (Greekfest, Taste of Kalamazoo, Ribfest, Island Fest, Blues Fest), but now, first with economics, then whiny neighbors, and now Covid, big downtown festivals are but a memory, but there is a big festival in Grand Rapids this weekend, and as an added bonus, it features great food.
The Grand Rapids Polish Heritage Society's Polish Festival is this weekend, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Calder Plaza in downtown Grand Rapids. (If you see something about Rosa Parks Circle, that site is under construction, so this year's festival is at Calder Plaza.
There will be plenty of food and drink. If you know Eastern European cuisine, especially, you'll enjoy these items from food booths and vendors: Of course, there will be plenty of kielbasa, and pierogis, and golabkis (Polish stuffed cabbage rolls, and it's pronounced "go-wump-key) and kapusta (cabbage or sour kraut). Then there's pickles on a stick and other items. And with the temperatures headed into the mid to upper 80's, keeping with the European theme, there will be Italian Ice, too. And if you want more sweets, paczkis on Friday afternoon.
Some vendors, too, will have vegetarian options, like pierogis filled with kraut, cucumber salad, and kapusta with rye bread. And if you know your Polish sausage, some of that sausage will be coming from Sobie's.
As far as entertainment goes, plenty of polka dancing, which gets the little kids going along with their parents and grandparents. And organizers says Sunday there will be a "busia" contest. Busia is the Polish word for grandmother, so bring plenty of friends and relatives to cheer on "Busia".
This seems to tie into Busias, baby names for their grandbabies.
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