Posted on CoolCleveland.com:
CoolCleveland: So is Paczki Day an old country tradition?
Lidia Trempe (Rudy’s Strudel): It is. Actually in Poland it starts on the Thursday before Lent. I’m hoping to one day find myself in Poland for that.
CC: How long has Parma’s Rudy’s Strudel & Bakery been hosting Paczki Day?
LT: The big party we’ve been doing for about five years now. We have a police officer directing traffic. We’ve been told that Ridge Road gets blocked up to I-480. People getting off the highway are heading our way. It grows every year. It started with just like a Polish Village vibe. Now it’s hysterical to see the amazing amount of different people in line. You have small children, you get hipsters from Ohio City, doctors from Parma Hospital. And the best part of it is, there is a line and there is a wait, but we make sure that it’s painless as it can with all of the entertainment, eating, contests and dancing. But everybody in line makes friends with whoever you are in line with next to, behind you, around you. I see people exchanging phone numbers, and random strangers polka, it’s so much fun.
CC: It sounds like you haven’t lived until you’ve experienced Paczki Day.
LT: Oh, you absolutely have not, without a doubt. And you can’t find this everywhere. People are calling us already to ship paczki to Arizona or Florida. We’re so lucky to be in Cleveland where we have this great ethnic diversity and people come to celebrate all ethnicities.