Polish Hall in Riverhead planning August festival in place of street fair

Faced with the cancellation of the Polish Street Fair and Festival for a second year in a row, Polish Hall has decided to host its own celebration. 

The Riverhead community center is planning a one-day Polish Festival for August 21. The fair will be both indoors and outdoors at Polish Hall in Riverhead, with times still to be determined. 

“As I’ve seen on social media, a lot of people were really disappointed that the fair was not going to happen,” said Lisa A. Dabrowski, president of Polish Hall’s Ladies Auxiliary and co-chair of the festival. “We’re going to serve traditional Polish food. We’re hoping to have some good polka music. Everything that’s going to be here is going to be of Polish tradition, of Polish authenticity.” 

The Polish Town Civic Association, which has hosted the annual fair since 1975, canceled the festival last year due to COVID-19. The association would have had to file for permits in January to hold the fair this year, but they plan to return in 2022. Polish Hall usually has a tent at the festival with polka bands and traditional Polish food. 

Polish Hall’s fair will not have vendors, like the traditional street fair, but the Polish school will likely have a table with crafts. Traditional Polish food like pierogis, kielbasa sandwiches and stuffed cabbage will be sold at the fair.  

Polish Hall is also planning a raffle to raise funds for building maintenance. Tickets are $20 each and are available both in advance and the day of the fair. Prizes include awards amounting to $1,000, $750 and $500. The drawing will be on Aug. 22. 

Ms. Dabrowski said Polish Hall will release further details as the event draws closer. 

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