Dozynki Polish Harvest Festival at Corpus Christi Church

Activities will take place on Sat. Aug. 25 and Sun. Aug. 26, 2007

Members of the Cheektowaga Community Symphony Orchestra String Section will headline this year’s Dozynki Harvest Festival at Corpus Christi Church on Sunday, August 26 at 4:30 p.m.. Let by guest conductor Judith Hirsch, the ensemble will play a varied program including Mozart, Bach, and lighter fare. Preceding the string concert, Fr. Anzelm Chalupka and Bruce Woody will present a program on piano, guitar and voice at 4 p.m. Pastor of Corpus Christi Church, Fr. Anzelm has been playing guitar since he was nine
years old. At the age of 13, he won second place in an all-Poland guitar competition for students under 15 years of age. Fr. Anzelm studied at the Liturgical Music Institute at the Papal Academy of Theology in Cracow and also plays the French Horn. Bruce Woody is a pianist and organist with a rich performance history who teaches music for the Catholic School System in WNY. Bruce is also a staff organist at the Riviera Theatre and performs regularly at Shea’s Performing Arts Center providing pre show music for their Broadway Series. Fr. Anzelm and Bruce Woody’s program will include religious and popular songs in English and in Polish.

Both performances will be held in the beautiful and historic Corpus Christi Church . The church was recently designated a New York State Landmark and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in recognition of its architectural and historic significance. Its beautiful interior includes a copy of Rafael’s Disputa in the dome above the altar, as well as stunning stained glass work. All proceeds from the festival will go toward restoration of the church building.

Music for dancing will be provided under the big tent by Al Kania’s Polka Smile Eastern Style on Saturday, August 25 from 6-10 p.m. The Pic-A-Polka Band with Joe Macielag will play on Sunday, August 26 during a special Mass of Thanksgiving for the Harvest to be celebrated at 11:30 a.m. as well as for dancing under the big tent from 1-4 p.m.. Rounding out the festival between 6-10 p.m. on Sunday will be Achilles Revival, an energetic group of young musicians that play classic rock covers as well as original material. Throughout the day on Saturday and Sunday, local piano students of Emmit Whitaker will play in the Polish Café during the festival.

Saturday’s events also include a dramatic one-man performance at 2 p.m. entitled Maximillian, Saint of Auschwitz about the life of St. Maximillian Kolbe, a priest who substituted his life for a condemned man in the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Also at 2 p.m. on Saturday, there will be an opportunity for children and adults to participate in a hands-on paper cutting activity led by folk artist Barbara Frackiewicz.

The Food:

  • Roast Pork and beef roll-up dinner by Chef John: Saturday 4-8
  • Chicken Dinner by Chef John: Sunday 12:30-?;
  • Brother Peter’s Polish Food Tent (Polish sausage, sauerkraut, golabki, pierogi, etc.) Sat. & Sun. 12:30-8 p.m.
  • Polish Beer Tent variety of beers imported from Poland: Sat. & Sun. 12:30-?
  • Homemade Polish pastries and teas: Sat. & Sun. 12:30-? in the Polish Café.
  • Produce and Natural Bread Market: Sat. & Sun. 1-5p.m.

Polish Thanksgiving:

Dozynki is a centuries old Polish harvest festival that celebrates the end of the grain harvest. Thanks are given to God for the earth’s bounty at a special Holy Mass.

At Corpus Christi Church in Buffalo a specially made wreath of grains, herbs and flowers, along with a specially designed bread baked by Mazurek’s Bakery will be presented during the Mass at 11:30 am on Sunday, August 26.

Other attractions:

  • Silent Art Auction featuring award winning photographers and other artists: in the Polish Café.
  • Polish Gift Shop featuring unique folk and religious items, books, etc.
  • Theme Basket Auction: over 70 quality gift baskets.
  • Church Tours by local church historian Bill Koch at 3:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Sat. and Sun.
  • Polish Sing-a-long: Sunday at 6 p.m. in the Polish Café.


Corpus Christi Church is located at 199 Clark Street off Broadway, one block from the Broadway Market.

Admission is free to all events. Free-will offerings will be graciously accepted at the concert and the dramatic performance.