What’s more of a tradition in NEPA than an annual church bazaar?
They’ve evolved over the years, of course, to include new foods and full-band performances.
Even with so many church consolidations happening in recent years, you can still go into most neighborhoods and find a bazaar.
On Thursday night I attended the opening of St. Nicholas Parish’s annual summer bazaar where Mexican and Caribbean foods were on the menu in addition to the ever-popular and traditional piggies (a personal favorite), haluski, pierogies, sausage and peppers and pizza.
I’ve attended that bazaar for 17 years.
It feels like just yesterday I was a freshman at Bishop Hoban High School. As such, it was a requirement to attend St. Nick’s bazaar, where everybody – and I mean everybody – was hanging out for a full weekend near the end of July.
You see the same great people every year.
There are the loyal families running the stands, like Mark and Delphine Torbik, Robert and Anna Marie Davison and George and Chris Bedwick, to name a few.
I’ve seen these people – and others like them – for years buying gifts for their stands, raising money and spending their entire weekends at this bazaar.
There’s so much to be said about these events that bring communities together.
I know there are dozens of bazaars happening this summer, and I regret I can’t mention them all, so do yourself a favor and find one near you before summer is over.
You’ll see the kids getting their faces painted, the novice gamblers on the money wheel (ahem, me) and the foodies devouring anything and everything.
After the bazaar that night was some more fun.
A live music act was booked at Senunas’ Bar & Grill in downtown Wilkes-Barre where I listened to Always Undecided. Musicians Kyle Demko and Anthony Picataggio entertained with their acoustic and rock jams.
They play everything from Ed Sheeran and Breaking Benjamin to Jason Aldean.
Owner Rose Senunas – the grande dame of the bar and restaurant across from King’s College – listened to the duo along with our friend Kim.
Rose had just come from a fabulous dinner up the street at Cork Bar & Restaurant with her family, then got to enjoy the band with her many regular customers.
Always Undecided was so good in fact that Kim inquired about booking them for her next summer house party.
Check them out on Facebook by simply searching for “Always Undecided.”
As the About section says, they’re just a couple of guys doing something they love.
In fact, we all should be doing things we love more often.
If live music is your thing, read the Times Leader Guide or the Weekender weekly to find what venues have who performing.
If sitting home with a glass of wine and doing some cooking is your thing, please imbibe.
If bazaars are your thing, attend them.
Remember at the bazaars: don’t forget to try the piggies!
Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.