Skokie and Niles Township Host "Coming Together": Celebrating Polish Culture

Western Kraków region
Traditional Polish costumes from the Western Kraków region Jan Mehlich / Wikimedia Commons
Western Kraków region
Traditional Polish costumes from the Western Kraków region Jan Mehlich / Wikimedia Commons

Skokie and Niles Township Host "Coming Together": Celebrating Polish Culture

The village of Skokie, Illinois prides itself as “one of the most [welcoming and] diverse communities in the country”. “Coming Together” is an annual celebration, led by Skokie, in partnership with the villages of Niles, Morton Grove and Lincolnwood, all of Niles Township.  Offering programs and events over three months, usually focused on a single culture, the 2019 installment is "Celebrating Polish Culture." Previously, “Coming Together” celebrated Muslim-Americans, Asian-Indians, Filipinos, Greeks, Assyrians, Koreans, Chinese, Latinos/Hispanics, and interracial harmony (Voices of Race).  This year’s exhibition features “discussions, presentations, performances and films that explore Polish identity and culture”. Numerous discussions will focus on books including, The Best Polish Restaurant In Buffalo by William Kowalski. We’ll talk about Coming Together 2019 with Jim Szczepaniak, a 10-year organizer for Coming Together 2019.  He is also director of community relations and strategic planning for Niles Township High School District 219. Joining Szczepaniak are Bernadetta Koryciarz, digital services assistant at the Niles-Maine District Library, and Agnieszka Rynkiewicz-Sarrafian, an actor, story teller, fairy tale writer, poet and translator. For over a decade, she has run a support circle for immigrant women called Babiniec. Rynkiewicz-Sarrafian’s students are refugees.