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Polish Village Music In New Waverly TexasSome many years ago Todd Buckner (Bochnia) informed me that he had a video from the 50’s of a 50th wedding anniversary in New Waverly, TX. It took some time but eventually we hooked up and he let me borrow the tape in question and I discovered that what he actually had was an audio recording duplicating exactly what had been played at a wedding reception in the early 1900’s. Read the full article →

Tlusty Czwartek In Houston TexasRepublished from February 12, 2010.

Employees of The Polish Food Store in Houston worked all night Wednesday making hundreds of delicious pączki to celebrate Tłusty Czwartek or Fat Thursday which is a traditional Polish feast marking the last Thursday before Lent. It is somewhat similar to the French festival of Mardi Gras which is celebrated on Fat Tuesday.
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Polski Dzien Polish Days 2011 In Bremond TexasNot too long ago, many of the people that were descendants of the early Polish immigrants in Texas spoke Polish but now it is rare to find someone that still speaks the language. In an effort to learn or re-learn the language of their ancestors, a group of people are meeting for Polish lessons every other Tuesday in the old parish hall at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Anderson, Texas.
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I have had the honor of being a guest at a wedding in Poland and wanted to share the experience, as I know many women planning their wedding right now and who are looking for ideas how to add a Polish flair to their special event. The best way to quickly describe it was a "Polish Bajka" (or Fairytale)…

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Tlusty Czwartek In Houston TexasEmployees of The Polish Food Store in Houston worked all night Wednesday making hundreds of delicious pączki to celebrate Tłusty czwartek or Fat Thursday which is a traditional Polish feast marking the last Thursday before Lent. It is somewhat similar to the French festival of Mardi Gras which is celebrated on Fat Tuesday.
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Sigmund JozwiakSigmund Jozwiak
August 25, 1925 – November 4, 2009

There is no doubt that Sigmund was an Icon in Texas Polish history! He was loved and will be missed, but it is up to us to remember the legacy that he has made for Polish Texans and celebrate the impact he has made on each of us. I personally know that he loved seeing all of us get together and celebrate our Polish culture and heritage. He knew that our music and customs, of which he help preserve, would be safe and passed down to another generation for others to enjoy. Read the full article →

Typical Texas-Polish Family Gathering With Brian Marshall and Friends In Houston TexasThe conclusion of another informal family gathering, this time the occasion of the Houston Polish Festival, March 2009. That’s Brian’s kids leading the tune, “Piwa Kuba.” Cousin Ronnie Kazowski on guitar. Chuck in ben-ben, and Bradley Williams on concertina. I feel compelled to share this sort of stuff with you because it’s becoming apparent to me in my middle age that not all of y’all experience music this way, the way many of us here in Texas sort of take for granted: nearly every day in within a living context. It also makes me a touch melancholy as well to note that my own tribe is now so fully assimilated into the greater culture that it has nearly completely lost touch with these simple, everyday life events where music is simply the soundtrack.
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Stash and Mattie Ripkowski FamilyWhile going through my grandmother Agnes Polka Smock’s old photographs, I found a newspaper clipping from the Houston Chronicle. It was a photo of one of her neighbor’s large family from New Waverly, Texas. The photo was titled "Twelve Brothers Served Uncle Sam" and the caption reads "These 12 sons in a family of 16 children, of Mrs. Stash Ripkowski of Dayton, have served with the United States armed forces. Husbands of three of the daughters were in service also, and a fourth husband worked in a defense plant. Members of the family are, left to right, front; Mrs. Ripkowski, Bernie, Felix, Alex, August, Leon, Bill, Raymond; second row: Herman, Catherine, Virginia, Franklin, John J., Pearline, Mike, Anna Lee and Stanley."

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