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RUSSIA MIGHT RETURN PLANE WRECKAGE. A media report suggests authorities in Moscow might be ready to return the wreckage of a Polish presidential plane that crashed in western Russia in 2010, but only if Warsaw ends an ongoing probe into the disaster.

In exchange for returning the wreckage of the Tu-154 plane, which crashed near Smolensk on April 10, 2010, killing then-Polish President Lech Kaczyński and 95 others, the Russians expect the Poles to close a reinvestigation into the disaster, Poland’s Dziennik Gazeta Prawna daily has reported, as quoted by the news website.

Earlier, Poland’s new Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said “the authority of the institutions of the state and the circumstances in which the presidential couple and senior Polish officials died demand that the disaster be explained.”

Morawiecki also said in the interview for Poland’s Gazeta Polska weekly that the “uncompromising truth” about the crash should be established, according to a report by, a Polish news website.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at his annual end-of-year news conference he was tired of hearing allegations from Warsaw that the 2010 air crash was the result of a Russian conspiracy, according to the Reuters news agency.

Putin denied Polish suggestions that the plane was probably destroyed by a mid-air explosion.

BLOOD-SPORT ENDANGERS STORKS. The killing of white storks in the Middle East is a cause of concern for Poland, as many of the storks flying from Central Europe are shot while wintering in Syria and Lebanon. Because the white stork is known as the unofficial symbol of Poland and since it is established in Polish folklore that the stork brings prosperity, fertility and good luck to the house on which it nests, Poles encourage their nesting.

The 7th International White Stork Census reveals that the stork population in Poland has dropped twenty percent in the last ten years. Images abound online of armed men in the Middle East, holding up their trophies of dead storks. Although the shooting of storks is outlawed in some Middle East countries, killing there has evolved into a popular blood sport for entire families, including children.

The Polish Ministry for the Environment intervened in 2015 to have the Lebanese police instructed to not ignore the shootings and educational programs were instituted in Middle East schools to raise awareness about the matter — all to no avail. The killing continues.

VOLUNTEERS LEAVE FOR CENTRAL AFRICA. The fourth Polish medical mission to Cameroon left Krakow on a two-week charity mission to Sangmelima in southern Cameroon. Previous missions took place in 2008, 2011 and 2016. Consisting of eye specialists, pediatricians, surgeons, anesthesiologists, a nurse, and medical students, the group carries with them medical equipment, medicines and several items for an elementary school there.

The project is undertaken by the Regional Physicians’ Council of Krakow with assistance from the “Without Frontiers Association of International Aid.”

The team aims to focus on children during this mission, said pediatrician Lidia Stopyra. Cameroon’s infant mortality rate is very high because of little access to both medical care and vaccinations against contagious diseases.

SUNDAY SHOPPING TO BE LIMITED. Bowing to the Solidarity union’s long-standing campaign to give retail employees more time for their families, Poland’s parliament recently passed a bill to gradually phase out Sunday shopping in large retail stores, supermarkets and malls. In 2018, large retailers will be able to operate two Sundays a month, in 2019, one Sunday each month and by 2020 only on seven Sundays all year, mainly before Christmas, Easter and other official holiday. Small corner groceries, and mom-and-pop stores will not be affected by the ban.



CAMDEN — Sun., Jan. 7. The Annual Wafer Luncheon (Opłatek) will be held at St. Joseph Church, Upper Parish Hall, 1010 Liberty St. 11:30 a.m.

For info and reservations, call Pat (856) 310-1783.


BUFFALO — JoAnn Falletta is taking the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra to Poland in March to perform in four different cities and four acclaimed concert halls. The tour comes at the invitation of Elzbieta Penderecka, president and founder of the Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival, an annual two-week festival in Warsaw that features many of Europe’s leading orchestras, ensembles and the world’s great soloists. First organized in 1997 as part of the Krakow 2000 European City of Culture program, the festival has taken place in Warsaw since 2004. Each year, the festival has a theme. In 2018, it celebrates the centennial of Leonard Bernstein and the 85th birthday of eminent Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki.

This will be the BPO’s first overseas tour since 1988.

Falletta will make history as the first American woman to lead a concert at the Festival. Although a number of American ensembles have appeared under the Festival auspices, the BPO will be the first full orchestra to perform in Warsaw during the two-week Festival.

Additional stops have the full BPO performing in four cities: March 18 at The National Forum of Music in Wrocław; March 20 at Philharmonic Hall in Warsaw; March 21in Katowice to perform in the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra (NOSPR) Concert Hall; and March 22 Lublin at the Centre for the Meeting of Cultures.

The BPO will perform the tour program with Conrad Tao at Kleinhans Music Hall on March 10 and 11, 2018. Tickets for what will be the official tour send-off for the orchestra are available by calling (716) 885-5000, by visiting, or by going to the Kleinhans Music Hall box office at 3 Symphony Circle, Buffalo.

GETZVILLE (WKBW) — A musician for over 50 years, Dennis Krupski is finding time to share his passion for brass instruments with the community in a very unique way.

Since this past summer, the retiree from Getzville has played taps at eight military funerals throughout Western New York — free of charge.

After attending a military funeral and hearing a pre-recorded version, the long-time musician knew he could do something about that, and so he did.

Krupski took to Craigslist and the calls started coming in.

“Why would I charge? I just don’t see a need for that. These men and women give the ultimate sacrifice for our country and creating a special moment like this — that’s the least that I can do,” he shared.

Nowadays, hearing taps played live at funerals is a rarity, but around Western New York it’s becoming less rare thanks to the generosity and music of one man.

Krupski can be reached at (716) 998-3623.


CLEVELAND — The Polish Legion of American Veterans (PLAV) will hold its 44th Biannual National Convention, Sept. 27-30, 2018 in Middleburg Heights, Ohio. The speaker for this event will be His Excellency Piotr Wilczek, Ambassador of the Republic of Poland.

This year, the PLAV will observe its 98th anniversary. It is one of only 50 veteran’s organizations chartered by an Act of Congress. The PLAV has 14 State Departments, Sons and Grandson Auxiliaries, and Ladies Auxiliaries.

Membership is not discriminatory on the basis of gender, race, color, religion or National origin.

“We are committed to the ideals of patriotism through allegiance to the nation, honor to America’s principles and aiding in the rehabilitation of disabled veterans,” said Terry Zacharyj, Ohio State Commander. “Our goal is to dedicate time and effort to ensure that no benefits are denied to those who served their country and to support legislation intended for those who earned the right to those benefits. We maintain and uphold the rich Polish heritage, tradition and family values.”

For more information on the Polish Legion of American Veterans, visit


CORNWALL — Sun., Jan. 21. Snowball Dance, Sacred Heart Parish Center, 2596 Cornwall Rd. (Cornwall & 419). Music by Shoreliners Band. 2:00-6:00 p.m. Info: Joe Yaklowich (717) 566-5704.

DOYLESTOWN — Sun., Jan. 7. Our Lady of Czestochowa Polish Language School Christmas Program, “Jaselka.” Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa, Ferry Rd. The event will take place before 12:30 p.m. Mass. For info call the shrine (215) 345-0600.

PHILADELPHIA — Jan. 14 - Polski Uniwersytet Ludowy Lecture in the Polish Language, Associated Polish Home, 9150 Academy Rd. 3:00 p.m. Speaker: Prof. Miron Wolnicki. Topic: “Technologies that change our lives in the 21st century.” Info (215) 624-9954. All are invited to attend. Admission is free.

PHILADELPHIA — Sun., Jan. 14 - Online Presentation “Map of Polish Philadelphia,” by Peter Obst, Associated Polish Home, Vistula Lounge, 9150 Academy Rd. 2:30 p.m. Info (215) 624-9954.

PHILADELPHIA — Sat., Jan. 27. St. John Cantius Polish Language School Carnival Ball, Parish Hall, 4415 Almond St. 8:30 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. Music by Simon Band. Tickets may be purchased at the Polish Bookstore (Ksiegarnia Polska), 2617 E. Allegheny Ave. (215) 426-2767, and Friday evenings from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. in St. Joseph Hall (next to church).

READING — Sun., Jan. 21. Polish American Heritage Association of Berks County Holiday/Installation Dinner, Giannotti’s Country Manor, 3118 Pricetown Rd., Temple, Pa, 1:30 p.m. Info: Sandy Hummel (610) 207-7065.

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