My turn

St Victor's big bash is coming

2012-07-18T20:15:00Z St Victor's big bash is comingBy George Grenchik Times Columnist
July 18, 2012 8:15 pm  • 

It seemed like not that big of a challenge last October.

But that was then and this is now.

I was asked back in October to become co-chairman of my parish’s annual social and fundraising event, known as VictorFest.

VictorFest began in the 1980s, maybe in the late ’70s, and continued into the early ’90s when it died off as the parish contracted.

As the parish was revived by an influx of Hispanic people, a push was started to bring back the festival. In Mexico, towns and churches having annual festivals is traditional. They inspire community and they raise funds for the church. And with many people, good food and drink, and festive music, they are a lot of fun.

With all these elements in mind, St. Victor, with the urging and work of its newer Hispanic parishioners, revived its earlier festival of the ’80s in 2007.

Although it didn’t happen, the thought last year was to again have a carnival as part of the celebration.

This year with maybe a few more i's dotted and t's crossed and a lot of thought and discussion, the mayor and City Council have agreed to permit a carnival as part of VictorFest.

There were some reservations about this as the carnival held at the River Oaks parking lot some years back encountered some trouble, as did the end of the annual City Fest celebrations of some years back.

But we, along with the public safety folks of Calumet City, are working to make this event one that is a joyous celebration for our parish as well as for former St. Victor people and former Cal City folks.

The carnival opens from 5 to 9 p.m. July 26. The full VictorFest, with food booths, bingo, live and DJ music, beer garden will happen from 6 to 11 p.m. July 27 and 28 with the carnival closing at 10 p.m. On Sunday, the fest and carnival will be from 2:30 to 9 p.m. Food includes Mexican, Nigerian and more traditional selections. The beer garden will feature Miller products and maybe a few “specialty” drinks.

Musical groups will include Sole City Juke box, Rte 66 — An American Band, Bandita Se Chicago and Angel Mio.

Much work has gone into making this a happy and fun time. I hope some of you will stop by. For more information, drop me an email.


Congratulations to St. Andrew parish on its celebration at the end of June. I know I enjoyed myself and still have a half dozen pierogi still in the freezer.

But St. Andrew's is looking for an alumni photo album which has been missing since the weekend of the fest, June 23 and 24. If you can help with this, please call the St. Andrew rectory at (708) 862 4165 or Al Parkhill at (708) 862 2867.

I know budgets are tight, but as a Cal City taxpayer, I’m glad the Calumet Memorial Park District and Mayor Michelle and the City Council sponsored the Freedom’s Eve celebration. I think the thousands of folks who attended would also agree.

Thanks for reading.

The opinions are solely those of the writer. George Grenchik is a longtime Calumet City resident and retired instructor at Bishop Noll Institute in Hammond. He can be reached at

Copyright 2014 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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