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36th annual Szopka Festival&Competition started in Greater Hartford

The highly anticipated 36th Annual Szopka Festival & Competition, sponsored by the Polish Cultural Club of Greater Hartford, Inc. is being held at the Polish National Home, 60 Charter Oak Avenue, Hartford on Sunday, November 27 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Numerous vendors will be on hand to sell Polish amber and stoneware pottery, jewelry, ornaments, honey, books, and hand-made crafts for Christmas gift-giving. The Country Kitchen will again offer delicious potato/cheese or sauerkraut pierogi, babki, kielbasa, opłatki (Christmas wafer) and other Polish delicacies for sale. Pączki (Polish doughnuts) and coffee will also be available as a sweet temptation.

The Szopka Festival, which originated in Krakow, Poland, represents a model of the manger or stable (szopka) where the Christ Child was born. The Polish local peasantry created the elaborate szopka to provide the Christ Child with an example of a more beautiful birthplace. A well-known Polish artist and iconographer, Marek Czarnecki, is currently instructing students in the art of creating a szopka for the competition to be held on November 27, which is open to children and adults. Entries will be judged and cash prizes awarded. Further information about the szopka-making contest can be found on

A Polish Buffet will be available for purchase at the Polish National Home Dining Room from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Admission to the Szopka Festival is free, and open to the public. Parking is available and the site is handicapped accessible. The proceeds from this event are used to benefit the Jennie Marconi-Javorski Scholarship Fund of the Polish Cultural Club.

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