Polka News

 

 

National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame and Museum

605 East 222nd Street
Euclid, OH 44123

USA

 

E-mail: Polkashop@aol.com

Phone: 216-261-3263

Toll Free: 1-866-66POLKA

Fax: 216-261-4134

 

 

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www.polkafame.com  © National Cleveland Style Polka Hall of Fame and Museum, 605 East 222nd Street, Euclid, OH 44123, USA.

 

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Polka passing

Joe Samsa - Saxophonist - Trustees Honor Roll

Ron Setinker - Button accordionist, recording artist

 

Remembering...

FATHER FRANK PERKOVICH

The Polka Priest from Minnesota

1928 - 2018

Polka Hall of Fame Inductee 2012

Father Frank Perkovich popularized the Polka Mass and turned it into a new tradition at nationality festivals around the country. His "Songs and Hymns from the Polka Mass" recordings are the most widely-sold Cleveland-Style polka albums in recent decades.

 

Frank Perkovich was born in Chisholm, Minnesota, in the lron Range, and grew up enjoying the Slovenian and Croatian music he heard at home and in his neighborhood. He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1954 and was assigned to area parishes before arriving at Resurrection Church in Eveleth in 1970.

 

Changes in worship, following the Vatican II Council, inspired Father George Balasko to debut the first Polka Mass in Lowellville, Ohio, in 1972 with favorite polka and waltz melodies performed by a band with lyrics from the liturgy. Father Perkovich contacted him and set out to style his own version with music by accordionist Joe Cvek and the Polka Massters, and lyrics adapted by Mary Cvek.

 

"Father Perk" celebrated his first Polka Mass in 1973 and, spurred by the warm reception, recorded it with Cvek and his orchestra. His Polka Mass became an immediate sensation and earned headlines, Festivals soon invited Father Perk and the Cvek musicians for appearances Both Polka Mass releases sold more than 100,000 copies.

 

Father Perk premiered the Polka Mass in Slovenia and Croatia in 1975. He was also invited to celebrate the Mass at the inauguration of Minnesota Governor Rudy Perpich. In 1982 Father Perk even created an ecumenical Polka Mass with a Lutheran parish. His greatest honor came in 1983 when he presented the Polka Mass at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Pope John Paul II gave his personal approval to Father Perk in an audience.

 

In 2004, Father Perk retired from active ministry and documented his experiences in a personal memoir "Dancing A Polka To Heaven". He was featured in the TV Slovenia documentary, "Polka! The Movie", and gained new fans in Slovenia and at film festivals. His final Polka Mass was celebrated at SNPJ Farm in Kirtland, Ohio, on Father's Day, June 17, 2018, with the Jeff Pecon Orchestra., a month before he died.

 

Thanks to Father Perkovich's enthusiasm, the Polka Mass today is featured at celebrations and special occasions in nationality parishes and neighborhoods across North America Polka bands may adapt his form with melodies and instrumentation to suit a particular ethnicity or theme, but the Polka Mass uniquely engages communities within the church with familiar melodies presented with reverence.

 

Bobby Zgonc, February 21, 1941 - June 17, 2018

Robert Paul Zgonc of Monroeville passed away Sunday, June 17, 2018. 'Bobby' was a world-class accordionist, enshrined in the National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame as a Trustees Honor Roll Recipient. He taught himself with a borrowed accordion beginning at age 11 and ascended to recognition as one of the most proficient at playing the model known as the button box, with a sound and energy all his own. Born in Westmoreland City, Pa., to parents of Slovenian descent, he influenced Slovenian culture across North America through his performances and recordings that included the 1960 hit 'SNPJ Polka' with the Al Morouse Orchestra.

 

Board nominations

Nominations are open for five Polka Hall of Fame trustee positions. Each three-year term is from April, 2018 to March, 2021. Nominees must be members in good standing. Submit your nominations by January 31, 2018.

 

Polka passing

Denny Anderson - Trustees Honor Roll

Joe Mlakar - Trustees Honor Roll

Al Pestotnik - Trustees Honor Roll

Alice Kuhar - Trustees Honor Roll

Tony Grdina - Long time photographer

Marcie Moravcik - Cleveland accordionist

Chris Kotsos - Cleveland bandleader

Elaine Vadnal - wife of Richie Vadnal

Gloria Jean DiFabio - keyboard artist

Marilyn Gobely - piano, cornet and accordion player

 

Polka vibes from the Gift Shop

Polka CDs from the U.S., Canada and Europe

George Staiduhar new CD of favorites

Cd closeouts, only $9 for selected titles

Polka DVDs, selected titles only $10 each

Button Box, Polka and Slovenian T-Shirts

Unique Vintage Handcraftsn from Slovenia

Polka Hall of Fame Cookbook

Cleveland-Style Hits, book by Cilka Dolgan

 

Christmas Polka CD Special - Only $9 while they last

Linda Lee Brown - A Frankenmuth Christmas

Fritz's Polka Band - It's Christmas Time

Nina and Franc Kompare - Christmas in Slovenia

Ken Umeck - Christmas Concert

 

Passing of Irene Ostanek at the age of 81

Beloved wife of 60 years to Walter Ostanek. Much loved mother of Cheryl and Richard. Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer Society.

 

National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame Awards 2017

The Lifetime Achievement Awards goes to Stan Blout, Kathy Hlad and Frank Stanger. The Trustees Honor Roll are for Linda Hochevar, Harry Faint, Ray Somich, Bob Doszak and Mikey Dee. The Greatest All Time Hit Songs were Riverboat Polka and Slovenian Home Polka. The Award for Best new song goes to Mike Schneider with Happy Polka Day. The presentation of the Awards will be at the Polka Hall of Fame Awards Show, Saturday, November 25, 2017, in the Grand Ballroom of the Downtown Cleveland Marriott Hotel (Public Square) at 2:00 p.m.

 

Staiduhar's Favorites on New CD

For the first time, through the efforts of John Hasper of Polkas.nl, you can enjoy the best of George's original polkas on one album. Get your copy now, contact or visit the PHOF.

 

Raddell's & Maple Heights Catering Earn Top Sausage Honors at Polka Hall of Fame Festival

Smoked sausages and polka music attracted a crowd of more than 1,200 to SNPJ Farm in Kirtland, Ohio, for the 14th Annual Slovenian Sausage Festival hosted by the National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame and Museum on a warm and sunny Wednesday, September 13, 2017. The People's Choice Award for top sausage went to Raddell's Sausage Shop of Cleveland, Ohio, while the festival judges selected Maple Heights Catering of Maple Heights, Ohio, for their prize. Azman Quality Meats of Euclid, Ohio, was voted runner-up in both categories. Canada's Polka King Walter Ostanek was the featured entertainer for the Sausage Festival. Dancers enjoyed eight hours of music as polka orchestras volunteered for the fund-raiser. Polka jam sessions popped up around the dance pavilion. About sixty musicians performed. Many brought their traditional diatonic accordions, known as button boxes, including Button Box Band of the Year, the Fairport Jammers, and Kathy Hlad, Button Box Artist of the Year.

 

Welcome Dave Skrajner

Polka entertainer Dave Skrajner has joined the Board of Trustees. Dave has been active on the Cleveland-Style Polka scene for 456 years from when he joined the Eddie Rodick Orchestra. He then became a charter member of the Don Wojtila Band and has been the bassist and vocalist ever since.

 

Ostanek Honors Kenny Bass on New CD

Kenny Bass was among the great performers of Cleveland-Style polka and waltz music. He received national renown for his Orchestra and his jazzy soundinspired scores of musicians. Canada's Polka King Walter Ostanek brings together his buddies in a special tribute CD features the music of Kenny Bass. Our friend from the Netherlands, John Hasper of Polkas.nl has Produced "Walter Ostanek and Friends Plays Kenny Bass and his polka poppers" as a fund-raiser for the Polka Hall of Fame. You'll enjoy the Bass favorites, 24 songs in all.

 

New Polka CD now in stock: Call (216) 261-FAME Toll Free 1-866-66POLKA

Walter Ostanek & Friends - Plays Kenny Bass And His Polka Poppers

Dave Wretschko - The Best Of

Patty C and The Guys - Toe Tappin' Tunes

Fred Ziwich - 40 Anniversary Recording

Fred Ziwich - Best Of and Most Requested Recordings

Mike Schneider - Happy Polka Days

 

New Polka CD now in stock: Call (216) 261-FAME Toll Free 1-866-66POLKA

Patty C and The Guys - Toe Tappin' Tunes

 

Chriss Hibbs joins board

Welcome Christine Mihelich Hibbs to the Board of Trustees. She fills the term of retiring trustee Duffy O'Neil. Chris has performed with the Don Wojtila Orchestra for 20 years. She just won her eight award as Vocalist of the Year.

 

New Haller Polka Cds

John Hasper of Polkas.nl has donated new CDs celebrating the 100th recording by Polka Hall of Famer Hank Haller and his Ensemble. Through The Years Volume 2. Proceeds from the sale benefit the Polka Hall of Fame.

 

Seeking Volunteers

Do you enjoy working at music events? Are you good at writing? Dou you have office or computer skills? Be a Polka Hall of Fame volunteer. Tell us how you'd like to help. Send us a note to polkashop@aol.com.

 

Lausche Grant

Madeline and Jim Debevec, Trustees of the Lausche Foundation, presented a check for a generous grant to the Polka Hall of Fame.  

 

Stories of Your Favorite Songs

Cleveland-Style Greatest Polkas and Waltzes A New Book by Cilka Dolgan. Which classical work inspired “Slap Happy Polka?” Which big-band swing orchestra recorded “Over Three Hills?” Who is the Emily of “Emily’s Waltz?” A new book by Cecilia “Cilka” Dolgan tells the stories of fifty of the most beloved Cleveland-Style polkas and waltzes. Cilka, President Emeritus of the Polka Hall of Fame and a well-known

musician in her own right, reveals how fifty favorite melodies became so popular. Each song is a Greatest All-Time Hit, as voted by members of the Hall of Fame over the years. Cilka shares the fascinating histories

about the Slovenian roots, famous names and inspirations behind the songs that make the Cleveland-Style so danceable. Now on sale at the Polka Hall of Fame Gift Shop for $6.95.

 

Play to win! Support the Polka Hall of Fame and you could be a winner! Enter the raffle and get a chance at weekly price of $200.m Order raffle tickets at the Polka Hall of Fame or call (216) 261-3263. You can't win if you don't play!