I frequently read your paper, and happend to come across the article on Paczki. It was interesting until I got to the part where the writer states “Fat Tuesday is the day of feast before Lent, a time when Catholics give up sweets for 40 days before Easter.” This is not only incorrect, it demonstrates the laziness of the author in neglecting to research something about which they obviously know nothing. A quick search on the internet would have produced the following: Lent, in some Christian denominations, is the forty-day-long liturgical season of fasting and prayer before Easter.  The forty days represent the time Jesus spent in the desert, where according to the Bible he endured temptation by Satan.  Different churches calculate the forty days differently. The purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer through prayer, penitence, alms giving and self-denial‹for the annual commemoration during Holy Week of the Death and Resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the events linked to the Passion of Christ and culminates in Easter, the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Your author exhibited a laziness not uncommon in today’s society, and the editor exhibited extremely poor taste in printing a statement that reduces a faith practice common not only to Catholics, but to Lutherans, Episcopalians, and others, to nothing more than refusing to eat a donut. Shame on you!! Kevin Nelson Editor’s reply: Ouch! Thanks Kevin, for helping me set the record straight. I promised an article on pazcki and was confused by the information on the Internet (which I prefer not to use as a resource in any case). I was baffled on how Polish history, Catholicism and a Mardi Gras celebration day (Fat Tuesday) could be related. Frankly I’m still pretty confused, so appreciate your comments all that much more. Beth Altena Editor
Fat Tuesday time for paczki Filled with the traditional prune or with less “Old World” but more popular cherry, raspberry, custard cream cheese or blueberry, paczki is a taste of Poland that has in many ways been Americanized. Bostwick Lake Bakery owner Mike Moyer believes that the popularity of paczki would radically increase if people tasted those made at bakeries, where authentic dough is used and a variety of fillings are offered. His bakery was formerly owned by a polish man who, ironically, didn’t make paczki. In the last ten years Moyer has sold paczki prior and during Fat Tuesday, the Tuesday before the Catholic tradition of Lent. This year Fat Tuesday is February 24. Fat Tuesday is the day of feast before Lent, a time when Catholics give up sweets for 40 days before Easter. Paczki is a Polish tradition with a strong American following. Traditionally prune-filled, the treat features a dough heavier and richer than a bizmark, and is filled now with many fruit or even custard or cheese filling. Moyer said his bakery often offered paczki for a month prior to Fat Tuesday, but now sells them for about a week. The annual treat will be available at the bakery now. With a traditional, religious and flavorful reason to try this taste of Poland, there is no excuse not to enjoy this annual pastry.