Pulaski Polka Parade held in lieu of canceled Polka Days event

Published: Jul. 19, 2020 at 5:51 PM CDT
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PULASKI, Wis. (WBAY) - Pulaski is known for its Polka Days event, which draws people from across the region. But, because of the pandemic, the longtime tradition was canceled.

“I was so sad, I’m a Pulaski native and we just moved back to this area after 20 some years and I was most looking forward to Polka days,” said Trisha Follen.

“Just the way things are right now. It wasn’t really a surprise but when you hear it, you know, a lot of people look forward to it all year long and to hear the news – it was a sad day,” said Jeff Maroszek.

Though disappointing, longtime Polka Days participant Mike Maroszek could understand the call that was made.

“They had to make an early decision on booking bands and all that, people coming from out of town because people come from all over the country for Polka Days, and you don’t want that virus brought in here,” said Mike. “So it was the right decision.”

But Mike and some of his family thought there could be a way to still have some sort of celebration.

“I come from a family of a lot of musicians, the Maroszek brothers, and my brother Scott said ‘It’d be nice if we’d have a Polka band parade,’” said Mike.

He presented that idea to the village and it was a hit.

“Everyone was just in favor of doing this whole thing,” said Mike. “They were all ‘It’s a go, let’s do it!’”

“Well, Polka days has been going on for forty plus years in Pulaski so it’s kind of in everybody’s blood around here,” said Mike. “It’s what you do in the middle of July.”

Though smaller than usual, the parade featured participants like the VFW, the Pulaski Fire Department, and, of course, polka bands.

People were asked to social distance to keep the event as safe as possible. Parade participants were also not allowed to hand out candy or other items.

Follen says her family felt safe.

“Definitely social distance, and out in the fresh air, and everyone was respectful and it was really nice,” said Follen.

A nice time that Mike hopes will tide people over until Polka Days can be held again.

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