Polish American String Band, 1993 Mummers Parade: "Come Join the Circus"
Polish American String Band
Founded in 1933, the Polish American String Band
has been entertaining audiences of all ages in the fine tradition
of Philadelphia Mummery with its great music -- string band music
with a polka sound -- beautiful costumes and award-winning
presentations. Its main focus is its appearance in the Philadelphia
New Years Day Mummers Parade, but the Band plays throughout the
year at various venues to raise monies for its elaborate costumes
and other expenses, including performances on St. Patrick's Day, at
Richmond's Easter Parade, at Port Richmond's Memorial Day
celebration, at the two-day Polish festival held in Atlantic City,
at the "Summer Mummers Parade" in Philadelphia, on the 4th of July
at various sites, at the "string band weekend" at the New Jersey
shore, at the Doylestown, PA, Polish festival, and at the
Philadelphia Pulaski Day Parade.
Headquartered in an ethnic neighborhood of
Philadelphia, the Polish American String band upholds the Slavic
heritage of its members. It has been a consistent prize-winner in
the Philadelphia New Year's Day Mummers Parade, placing in the top
ten 64 times, winning 11 first prizes and 14 second prizes. Over
the years, the band as played at performances throughout the United
States, in Havana, Cuba, before Pope John Paul II in 1979 and 1998,
and in their ancestral homeland of Poland, playing in Warsaw,
Gdynia, Gdansk, Torun, Krakow, and Czestochowa. They have also
performed numerous times in pre-game entertainment for the
Philadelphia Eagles, Phillies, Flyers and 76ers; for Sen. Ted
Kennedy's birthday party in Boston; for American Ambassador to
Italy Thomas Foglietta in 1998; and for various civic functions at
the request of Philadelphia mayors and Pennsylvania governors.
Although the membership is no longer exclusively
Polish, their music reflects the Polish heritage. More than ninety
members, all volunteers varying in age, background, and occupation,
live and work in the Delaware Valley of Pennsylvania.
The project is documented with two pages of text; an
8-page history of the Band; a roster of Band members as of December
1999; a list of their appearances in the Mummers Parade, with
parade themes for each year, beginning in 1935; and eleven 8 x 10
Originally submitted by: Robert A. Borski, Representative (3rd District).
The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.