Aug. 13—PLYMOUTH — Ron Kobusky was getting his family's stand ready at the 18th annual Plymouth Alive Kielbasa Festival Friday morning.
The Kobusky and Burdulis families operate MeeSo Corny — and if you have never tried it, the advice is you should. Customers were already lining up, with a few of them anxious to get what they called "the best corn I've ever had."
Kobusky, however, wears more than one hat in the town — he is the current President of Plymouth Borough Council.
"The Kielbasa Festival is great for the town," Kobusky said. "We've been here almost since the beginning and we are constantly meeting lots of nice, friendly people who really enjoy this event."
Kobusky said the borough employees and many volunteers have been busy all week preparing for the festival.
"We've cleaned all the streets, we've established safe crosswalks and the police and fire departments have been helping out everywhere. The whole town really comes together for this and we're really proud of the effort by everyone."
Alexis Eroh, the new Chair of Plymouth Alive, said she was busy in the morning checking on the 82 vendors, making sure they were setting up in the correct spots and trouble-shooting their needs.
"So far, everything is running smoothly," she said. "It's been a team effort and I can;t thank the volunteers, members of Council, Mayor Frank Coughlin and the Plymouth Alive Committee for all they have done to make this event a great success. With the perfect weather we are going to have, we could exceed all expectations."
Mayor Coughlin was nearby and he was quick to take credit for the good weather.
"I think that's one of my jobs as Mayor," Coughlin said, with a chuckle. "But seriously, we have to give credit to the volunteers, the organizations, the vendors, the customers for making the Kielbasa Festival a huge success. Our businesses in town are all open and the big crowd should take advantage of what those businesses have to offer. We invite everyone to come down and enjoy all that we have to offer for these two days."
Diane Vishnefski,, whose son and daughter-in-law John and Stacey Vishnefski own Tarnowski;'s Kielbasa in Nanticoke, said they are confident they can again win best fresh and best smoked kielbasa like they did in 2021.
"I am so happy to be able to see my dad's tradition continue," she said. "My father, Thad Tarnowski, operated Tarnowski;s Kielbasa for many years. We still use the original recipes."
One tent down Frank and Marie Ondish have their Polish Connection tent set up. Frank was busy cooking up kielbasa and potato pancakes, with more Polish delicacies available, like halushki, piggies and pierogi, not to mention the new Polish Taco.
"We love this festival," Frank said. "It gives you a real hometown feel. Not many small towns do this type of festival anymore. Plymouth is a great town. And we can't wait for the parade tomorrow."
Jack Kovach, owner of Happy Pizza on West Main Street, will be the 2022 grand marshal for the Kielbasa Festival Parade, which steps off Saturday, Aug. 13, at 11 a.m.
"The Kielbasa Festival is something that the town of Plymouth looks forward to each year," said Eroh. "The bars and restaurants along Main Street prepare accordingly, ordering weeks in advance to get ready for the crowds."
Tom McTague, whose late father, Thomas McTague, served as Mayor of the town, said the Kielbasa Festival is a "premiere event."
"For a small town, this is a huge event with large crowds both days," McTague said. "There'sx so much here for everybody — food, music, crafts, games. You can't beat this festival."
Dr. Joe Piszczek agreed with McTague, adding that the Kielbasa Festival reminded him of the town's centennial celebration in 1966.
"This event gives you the same kind of hometown feel and spirit," he said.
Friday Aug. 12 — Sue Gryziec Main Stage
1:30-3:30 Stevens Polka Band
4:00-6:00 Nobody's Fool
6:30-8:30 Eddie Day and the Starfires
9:00-11:00 The Great Rock Scare Reunion
WVW Valley With A Heart Bandshell
4:00-6:00 Reel in the Years
6:30-8:30 Shakey Ground w/Bob Gryziec
9:00-11:00 Kris & the Trainwrecks
Saturday Aug. 13 — Sue Gryziec Main Stage
1:30-3:30 Fuzzy Park Trio
4:00-6:00 Stanky and the Coalminers
6:30-8:30 $haken — Eddie Money Tribute Band
9:00-11:00 Fair Warning — Van Halen Tribute Band
WVW Valley With A Heart Bandshell
1:30-3:30 Eddie Appnell Duo
4:00-6:00 Lance Thomas Band
6:30-8:30 Swing Masters Polka Band
9:00-11:00 Mother Nature's Sons
Reach Bill O'Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.