Memphis In May 2015 Salutes Poland - News & Events

Dear Friends,

The Memphis in May Festival season honoring Poland this year has already begun! The official inauguration took place on the 5th of February with the unveiling of a special poster by a Memphis painter Lester Merriweather honoring Poland. During his stay in Poland, the artist was inspired by Polish folk art and he envisioned it on the poster. His work of art can be viewed as well as purchased on the internet.  A conference for Shelby County school teachers on February 7th was the second event of the Festival, in which our Educational Commission MIM took part. We prepared several presentations that were received with great interest and applause. Teachers from local schools will benefit from knowledge and guidance provided by our presenters on topics that included Polish history, culture, heritage, geography and economics when they pass that knowledge on to their students. Presenters were Magdalena Teodorowicz, Milka Mitchell, Eddie Kozlowski, Mark Scarbecz and Halina and Jacek Dutkiewicz.

A few days later, on February 10, we met at the Expo for volunteers who want to help in the work related to the preparation, organization and conduct of the festival events. For those of you who volunteered to work in the Honored Nationals Committee, we especially sugest participation in such committees as "International Programming" (Dwight Haley, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and "Education" (Audrey Elion, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). Their main goal is to help artists, students and other people who come from Poland and assistance in school competitions about our motherland. Information on these committees is either available already, or will be available soon on the Internet, as well as can be directly obtained from Jacek Dutkiewicz (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), who was selected by the Management of MIM as the President of Honored Nationals Committee. Over 50 volunteers from our Polish community are on the "Honored Nationals” committee, so we have the opportunity to proudly represent Memphis Polonia in this year’s Festival. Many people are already using tags and flags on their cars to promote the country of our ancestors. We invite everyone to use these tags and flags to show local community the role of Poland in this year’s Memphis in May celebration. We also want to raise funds that will help us organize, in coordination with Management of MIM, additional events like a Polish culinary show performed by the chief Edward Nowakowski. We would love to enhance this show with an exhibition and art performance.

The part of the Festival thematically related to Poland promises to be very interesting. There are concerts, exhibitions, a Polish team competing in the Barbeque Contest, a school exchange, lectures and other activities planned for the event. The Polish Embassy in the U.S. considers the event in Memphis as the most important event promoting Poland this year in the United States and is supporting our organization financially in MIM. In May, we expect to host the highest-ranking representatives of the Polish diplomatic contingent in the US. We have a lot of work ahead of us, but we also have a chance to take advantage of this unique opportunity and reap the fruits of our efforts for the benefit of Poland and Polish people living in Memphis and beyond.

PAS Executive Committee

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