Polish Heritage Celebrated at EMU



YPSILANTI–  There was a host of attractions at the Eastern Michigan basketball doubleheader, all part of Polish-American Heritage Day held recently at the Convocation Center Polish singing sensation Magda Kaminski was a big hit performing at both halftimes.  She was gracious with post concert photos and mingled with the crowd after her sessions.


Photo by Lars Hjelmroth

The event provided a platform for dialogue and creative connections.  Groups and people affiliated with Polish culture and those in attendance had an opportunity to make connections, build relationships and develop ideas for the future.  Also, awareness was generated throughout the community and beyond.  Other EMU activities were highlighted such as the faculty art exhibition and the upcoming graduate student art exhibition through March 8, at the Ford Gallery on campus.   

A variety of historic and art displays were showcased in the atrium lobby along with an academic presentation by the EMU World Language Department.  As the global economy shifts, the EMU World Language Department showed how communication has become essential in more than one language.  The handouts introduced why it is so important to have a good understanding of other cultures.  It seems as if culture-fusion is the watchword for the future.  Dr. Rosemary Weston-Gil was on hand for questions and resource materials were provided for programs abroad.  It was also announced that EMU would be starting a Polish curriculum next September.  

The EMU E-Club Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2012 was introduced and a presentation about the Polish-American Football League, Polska Liga Futbolu Amerykańskiego, with EMU assistant football coach Mike Hart and sports broadcaster Raymond Rolak was popular.  A lively question and answer period held the attrention of many.  Also a display on the basketball, koszykowka, opportunities in Poland was a highlight.  This year there are 68 American men and 44 American women playing professional basketball in Poland, including Lauren Prochoska formerly of Bowling Green She was the Mid-American Conference Women’s Tournament MVP last year in Cleveland Anna Kowalska, a Polish National and also an assistant coach for the visiting Kent State women talked about her NCAA basketball experiences.    

Information was also available on how to access archives of the Polish Detroit history collection at the Bentley Library along with information regarding the Polish Ann Arbor Film Festival.  

The Polish Times had a popular display about the Polish aviators of World War II and the Battle of Britain A local art club presented awards to the most outstanding educational displays including those presented by the PRCUA, Michigan Polish American Congress, and the Polish National Alliance.   

Four year EMU basketball letter winner Kamil Janton, also a Polish National, had an outstanding defensive performance in the 68-55 win over Ohio University Another highlight was in the EMU women’s victory over Kent State, 83-47.  EMU’s Tavelyn James lit up the scorboard with 40 points with 10 three’s.

The television highlights were picked up by PolVision of Chicago and there was a broadcast crew from Poland The Wawel Folk Ensemble and the PNA Centennial Dancers performed during the TV timeouts.

Courtesy of www.mypolishtimes.com