Polish Constitution Weekend Activities Scheduled April 29 – May 1: Sun Displays

PARMA, Ohio — Mark your calendar for Polish Constitution Weekend, scheduled for April 29 through May 1. The Polish American Congress – Ohio Division, in conjunction with the Polish Village of Parma (Ridge Road), will host the event, which commemorates the signing of Europe’s first democratic constitution. PAC is based in Independence.

The celebration brings together Poles from all over the country and the world. This is an opportunity for people of Polish descent to celebrate their common heritage of freedom and democracy. The popular parade will also be back this year.

The Polish American Congress is an umbrella organization under which all Polish groups in Ohio can express their pride and solidarity in their common culture. Additionally, PAC is one of the few ethnic organizations with offices in Washington, DC, advocating on issues critical to the Polish people, including the current Ukrainian conflict.

PAC’s Charitable Foundation has helped many Poles in need of help, such as those suffering from natural disasters in children’s orphanages. Additionally, the Ohio Division supports the local community by providing scholarships, cultural exchanges, and job opportunities for students of Polish descent.

For more information, call 330-646-4082 or email PolAmCongressOH@gmail.com.

At the library: Here’s a look at some of the things happening at the Parma Heights Branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library, 6206 Pearl Road, Parma Heights.

A virtual program, “You Must Learn: a Discussion about Cleveland’s Hip-Hop Cultural History,” will be offered at 7 p.m. on April 5. It will look back to the 1980s and 1990s, when Cleveland was home to some of the most fertile hip-hop. cultural arts scenes nationwide, including rap music from Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and graffiti artists to dance groups. Northeast Ohio’s hip-hop roots run deep.

As part of ThirdSpace Action Lab’s “Chocolate Cities” project, Twelve Literary Arts and Spread the Love Foundation will discuss ways to better document Cleveland’s rich cultural heritage.

Registration is mandatory. Visit cuyahogalibrary.org or contact a librarian at the Parma Heights branch by calling 440-884-2313. A link to the meeting will be emailed to registered attendees approximately one hour prior to the program. Staff will be available to help you connect to Zoom and resolve technical issues starting 15 minutes before the program. Participants will need a device with audio and/or video and an internet connection to participate.

The library will also host an in-person program on the Iditarod Trail at 7 p.m. on April 6. Join local dog sledding enthusiast Eleanor Csizmadia as she shares her experiences visiting the Iditarod Trail dog sled race and her passion for this unique sporting event.

Back from the 2022 Iditarod, she’ll talk about her studies on the last big race and share photos. Csizmadia will also discuss the history, facts, rules and what makes this race so special, including the mushers, Cleveland’s connection to the 2023 race and why dogs love to run.

The program is sponsored by the Friends of the Parma Heights Branch Library.

Registration required. To visit cuyahogalibrary.org or call 440-884-2313.

Camp Canopy Scholarships: The Cuyahoga Soil and Water Conservation District is offering scholarships to Cuyahoga County high school students to attend Camp Canopy June 12-17 at Camp Muskingum in Carroll County. Incoming freshmen through graduating seniors (up to age 19) are eligible to apply.

Scholarship applications should be made to Cuyahoga SWCD by April 8. Bursaries cover the cost of camp plus meals and programs ($375 value). The scholarships will be awarded on April 15.

For more information and to apply, visit cuyahogaswcd.org/programs/camp-canopy.

Excellent teachers: Independence Alumni Association Danielle Renton and Joan Mencl with Excellence Educator Awards.

Mencl, an alumnus of Independence High School and Kent State University, has spent her entire career teaching at Independence. As she accepted the award, she spoke of how lucky she was to have spent her entire career doing what she loves. Superintendent Ben Hegedish called Mencl a consummate professional who was strong, committed, and unafraid to respectfully challenge people to always do what was in the best interest of the students.

Mencl will retire this year after 35 years of teaching, but plans to continue serving as an elected school board member at Independence.

Renton began teaching at Independence in 1991 as a traveling Chapter One tutor in elementary and middle schools. In 1993, she was hired at the college as a fifth-grade teacher and remained there for the past 28 years. She was recognized as a Martha Holden Jennings Scholar and received the Ohio Middle School Association Regional Award in 2019. Principal Jamie Vanek spoke about Renton’s educational approach to teaching and how she does wouldn’t take ‘no’ for an answer when it came to doing what was best for her students.

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Sally J. Minick