Dyngus Day - Cleveland

3.) Dyngus Day – Cleveland – April 21, 2014

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Śmigus-Dyngus, also known as lany poniedziałek (“wet Monday”), is the Polish Easter Monday celebration where traditions include pouring buckets of water on girls…

…and striking their legs with pussy willow branches.

Celebrated as Dyngus Day in the United States…

…it was Buffalo, NY’s celebrations that inspired Cleveland’s DJ Kishka (Justin Gorski) to bring the festival here in 2011.

It grew so quickly in those first three years, that this year led to the festival’s expansion into Ohio City and Tremont…

…where festival goers could easily jump around via Lolly the Trolley

…and visit participating businesses (Happy Dog)…

…each marked by red and white balloons (bier markt)…

…and offering everything from pierogi necklaces (Market Garden)…

…paczki treats (Yellow Cake)…

…Polish ice cream (Mitchell’s)…

…special Polish menus (Town Hall)…

…Polish beer (XYZ Tavern)…

…and, of course, polka (Yellow Cake)…

…polka (Market Garden)…

…and even more polka (Flying Fig)…

…until you couldn’t help but dance!

In fact, so many businesses took part in this year’s festival…

…that it became impossible to see it all.

That why it was a good idea to occasionally stroll about and take in all the Polish red…

…the pierogi hats…

…kielbasa pooches…

…(slightly offensive) Polish shirts…

…fake beards galore…

…a passing song by Guitar Man

…and even a possible Ghoulardi sighting.

Just as long as you ended up here…

…at Kishka’s Beer Heaven Tent.

For not only was this the place for schnitzel (Sterle’s)…

…spirits…

…sweet (and savory) paczki…

…the colorful Dyngus Dog…

…and various festival-related merchandise (boy oh boy did everyone seem to have some type of squirt gun!)…

…it was the location of the official Miss Dyngus crowning and talent show…

…and a short, entertaining parade…

…featuring various forms of Krampus

…and the newly crowned Miss Dyngus herself – Kim Hanko-Dale!

May her reign bring Polka to the (Cleveland) world!

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