Fri 10/4 @ 5-10:30PM
Sat 910/5 @ 5-11PM
Sun 10/6 @ 11AM-6PM
The church festival season is drawing to a close. But there’s one big one yet to come: the annual Polish Festival at the Shrine Church of St. Stanislaus in Slavic Village.
This one is worth going to for the inevitable church tour alone. The architecture and ornate decoration in the 1891 church are among the most spectacular in Cleveland.
But there’s plenty else going on, with costumed Polish folk dancers and musicians, including polka and pop bands for your dancing pleasure, games of chance (i.e. “gambling”), a boutique with Polish imports for sale, two bars featuring both imported and domestic beers, wine and spirits, and of course food, food and more food: pierogies, potato pancakes, golabki (stuffed cabbage rolls), kielbasa, czarnina (duck blood soup), cabbage and noodles, baked goods, and more more more! I mean, you do go to these things to eat, right? The food at such festivals, prepared by church members, often from recipes handed down from the great-great-grandparents who came over from the Old Country, is one of Cleveland’s greatest treasures.
Saturday at 5pm there’s a mass with trumpets and timpani with the church tour following. The trumpets and timpani are back for three masses on Sunday morning: in English at 8 and 11:30am and the traditional Polish-language service at 10. The Sunday church tour follows the last mass.
The festival is free so you can spend lavishly — on food, of course.