Baltimore’s Polish Home And Poland
BALTIMORE, Md. – Polish Home and Poland Celebrate Centennials. This year is one of historic harmonic convergence for the Polish Home Club, Inc. and the Republic of Poland since both are celebrating their 100th birthdays. On August 11, 1918 Polish Home was born, and on November 11, 1918 Poland was reborn after being partitioned out of existence for the preceding 123 years by Austria, Prussia and Russia.
The 100th Anniversary Dream Team. Pictured is the officers and directors of the Polish Home Club who labored over the past year to make its Sto Lat! (100 Years!) a tremendous and very memorable success: Standing left – Mary Miller, Andrew Fury, John Gustin, President Lewis Hubbard, Robert Sova, Gerald Dicus, Robert Oppel and Richard Poremski. Seated: Sandra Placek, Dale Quisgard, Jane Kreider, Past President Theresa Giza, Nancy Mulcare and Rosanne Carter.
The Polish Home celebrations began here on Saturday evening, August 19th, with a dashing cocktail reception with music and dancing. The festivities concluded the next day, Sunday, with an afternoon black-tie-optional banquet with music during the cocktail hour and for dancing after the dinner. Many of the gentlemen attendees did avail themselves of formal attire. Arriving guests were greeted at the door by members of the Ojczyzna Polish Dancers regaled in grandiose authentic folk costume – which proved to be a great heritage reminder as to why everyone was there, as well as the ‘old country’ familial culture being celebrated.
President Lewis Hubbard opened the celebration with his welcoming and fraternal remarks to the local Polonia, guests, and club members. MC Tom Rybczynski proved himself to be very capable and entertaining as he moved the program expertly along. Toastmaster Richard Poremski intoned that the Polish traditional celebratory toast of Sto Lat! – 100 years! was now not quite appropriate since Polish Home has already achieved that salient point in time. So, as the glasses of champagne were raised, he proposed a toast of “Dwiescie Lat! – 200 Years! – to Polish Home into the future!”… which was joyfully adopted and voiced by everyone.
Consul General Zygmunt Matynia, representing the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Washington, D.C., was the guest speaker. He opened his remarks by lauding Poland’s centennial and delivering a short – but very concise – tutorial of Poland’s history from 1918 to 2018, which was sometimes very tragic, but ultimately triumphant as Poland progressed into a free and democratic country. Matynia also stated that “Polish immigrants came to this country in great numbers. As we know, many of them settled right here in Baltimore, helping to build the greatness of this land which is the homeland of Senator Barbara Mikulski. They were hard working people whose effort and sacrifice has contributed in significant ways to the American nation.”
Before the sumptuous banquet that was thoroughly enjoyed by the guests, two annually offered scholarships were awarded to a pair of deserving college students. The momentous afternoon wound down into early evening with much dancing accompanied by a dreamy and convivial atmosphere among the very contented guests.
“Dwiescie Lat Polski Dom!” – “Two Hundred Years Polish Home!”
Richard P. Poremski
Polish American Journal
Washington, DC Bureau
September 8, 2018