Monday is Dyngus Day

Big Celebrations on Buffalo's Eastside

Allan Harris
April 21, 2019 - 10:33 am

(WBEN) Monday is Dyngus Day in Buffalo. Dyngus Day is a traditional Polish celebration that is honored in a number of cities around the world, but none as big as here in Buffalo. There will be festivities at the Broadway Market starting at 8am with a party at noon and then the big parade gets underway at 5PM starting at the Central Terminal.

According to the official website at "Historically a Polish-American tradition, Dyngus Day celebrates the end of the often restrictive observance of lent and the joy of Easter. Over the decades, Dyngus Day has become a wonderful holiday to celebrate Polish-American culture, heritage and traditions. There are many stories that attempt to explain the origins of the day. Many Polish customs date back to pre-Christian, Slavic practices. The custom of pouring water is an ancient spring rite of cleansing, purification, and fertility. The same is true of the complimentary practice of switching with pussy willow branches. Since 966 A.D., Dyngus Day has been associated with the baptism of Prince Mieszko I. Tradition states that Prince Mieszko I along with his court were baptized on Easter Monday. Thus, Dyngus Day and its rites of sprinkling with water have become a folk celebration in thanksgiving for the fact that the first king of Poland was baptized into Christianity, bringing Catholicism to Poland. In more modern times, the tradition continued when farm boys in Poland wanted to attract notice from the girls of their choice. It was customary to throw water and hit the girls on their legs with twigs or pussywillows. Cologne was used instead of water by the more gallant lads. The ladies would reciprocate by throwing dishes & crockery and Tuesday was their day of revenge, imitating the same tactics."

Parade Chairperson Bernadette Pawlak told WBEN News that her hope is that someday the Buffalo Dyngus Day celebration will become as big as Marti Gras is in New Orleans so people all over the world will come here for the day after Easter. Check out all the information including the parade route at

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