LynnMarie and Don Wojtila to Enter Polka Hall of Fame,
Alex Meixner Featured in Awards Show, November 24
Nashville's polka sensation LynnMarie and Cleveland bandleader Don Wojtila are to
be inducted into the National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame at the 31st annual
Polka Music Awards Show, Saturday, November 24, 2018, in the Grand Ballroom of the
Downtown Cleveland Marriott Hotel. The event is the highlight of the 55th Thanksgiving
Polka Weekend, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, November 22, 23 and 24. The announcement
was made September 20 at the Awards Show preview reception in the Euclid City Hall
Council Chambers in Euclid, Ohio.
This year's Awards Show theme, "Polka Mania!," features popular TV accordionist Alex
Meixner, Fritz's Polka Band from New York, Minnesota's Singing Slovenes, the Button
Box Divas and Canada's Polka King Walter Ostanek, among other entertainers. The Polka
All-Stars stage orchestra is directed by Tom Mroczka. Annual awards are to be presented
in categories, such as Band of the Year and Musician of the Year.
Accordionist and bandleader LynnMarie Hrovat Rink has been nominated for five Grammy
Awards for Polka Album of the Year. She is based in Nashville and has released 13
albums. LynnMarie tours internationally, records with country music legends, and
stars in a one-woman show featuring Cleveland-Style Polka music. The Don Wojtila
Orchestra has been a polka fan favorite since 1980 with Don playing lead accordion.
Don wrote many of the songs on his four recordings, including "Marry Me" and "Hugs
and Kisses." The group also appears as the Cleveland party band Schnickelfritz.
Two high-energy All-Time Cleveland-Style Hits were also chosen by Polka Hall of Fame
members. "Quick Stop Polka" and "Four Rs Polka" were written and recorded by the
late Cleveland bandleader Art Perko nearly thirty years apart.
The Board of Trustees added six names to the Polka Hall of Fame Honor Roll. Three
hail from the area of Youngstown, Ohio, and Sharon, Pennsylvania. Ray Kovac performs
on the diatonic accordion, known as the button box. Ron Pivovar writes and records
music for the button box. The late Robert "Spree" Smrecansky was the drummer for
the Del Sinchak Orchestra for sixty years. Cleveland bassist and vocalist Denny Marold
has enjoyed a 6-year career. Minnesota's Singing Slovenes celebrate their Slovenian
heritage with stage appearances. Ontario vocalist Murray McFadgen appears with Canada's
Polka King Walter Ostanek.
Enjoy three days of music and dancing with top Cleveland-Style and Slovenian polka
bands and performers from Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York, Tennessee, Minnesota
and Canada. Performers include Grammy-winners Walter Ostanek and Joey Miskulin, Alex
Meixner, Mikey Dee, Eddie Rodick, Harmonia, Fred Ziwich, and Klancnik and Friends
(Polka Band of the Year). Music is Thursday ($15) from 7:00 to midnight; Friday ($20)
from 1:00 p.m. to midnight; and Saturday evening ($15) after the 4:30 p.m. Polka
Mass. Awards Show tickets are $25 each.
Reserve rooms at the Downtown Marriott Hotel through Kollander Travel at a special
rate of $105 per room-night, including free parking, (216) 692-1000, toll-free (800)
800-5981, or firstname.lastname@example.org. For dance and show tickets, call the Polka Hall of
Fame, (216) 261-FAME, toll-free (866) 66-POLKA, or email@example.com.
Polka radio deejay Tony Petkovsek started the Thanksgiving Polka Weekend in 1963.
The Cleveland style of polka has roots in Slovenian folk music with influences from
country and western, jazz, pop tunes, and other nationality sounds. The lively style
of American dance music was especially popular in the years following World War II
when artists like America's Polka King Frank Yankovic scored million-selling hits.
The Polka Hall of Fame and Museum features audio exhibits, photos and original instruments
tracing the Cleveland-style polka from its origins in the city's Slovenian neighborhoods
in the 1890s to national renown. The archive preserves 5,000 Slovenian and Cleveland-style
recordings. The Hall of Fame is located at 605 East 222nd Street in Euclid, Ohio,
in the historic former Euclid City Hall. Hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and
Saturday, 11:00 to 4:00. Admission is free. For details, contact (216) 261-FAME or
Cleveland accordionist and bandleader Don Wojtila is to be inducted into the National
Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame at the Polka Music Awards Show staged at the Downtown
Marriott Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, November 24, 2018.
Nashville performer and five-time Grammy nominee LynnMarie Hrovat Rink will be inducted
into the National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame at the gala Polka Music Awards
Show XXXI at the Downtown Marriott Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio
Accordion entertainer Alex Meixner is the featured guest at the 31st annual Polka
Music Awards Show hosted by the National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame at the
Downtown Marriott Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, November 24, 2018. The event
is part of the three-day Thanksgiving Polka Weekend, now in its 55th year.