DIVISION OF TRANSPORTATION – Temporary Closure, Birmingham Ethnic Festival Activities, August 19-21
In conjunction with the annual Birmingham Ethnic festival to be held on August 20 & 21, 2016, the following streets will be closed to vehicular traffic beginning at approximately 7:00 a.m., Saturday,August 20, and continuingthrough 10:00 p.m., Sunday, August 21:
- Consaul Street from Front to Woodford (access will be maintained to Tony Packo’s parking lot and alley)
- Bakewell Street from Consaul to Bogar
- Bogar Street from Bakewell to Caledonia
- Burr Street from Consaul to Esther
- Esther Street form Front to Burr
- Magyar Street Consaul to the southern end
- Milford Avenue from Consaul to Minerva
- Burger Street from Consaul to Minerva
- Caledonia Street from Consaul to Bogar
- Genesee from Consaul to Bogar
In addition to the above closures, parking will be prohibited on the following streets to effectively conduct the activities:
- Consaul Street-both sides from Front to Woodford
- Genesee both sides from Consaul to Bogar
- Bakewell Street-both sides from Consaul to Bogar
- Bogar Street-both sides from Bakewell to Caledonia
- Caledonia Street-both sides from Consaul to Bogar
- Esther Street-both sides from Front to Burr
- Burr Street-north side from Esther to Consaul
- West side of street leading back to tank farm off of Esther Street
- Burger Street east side from Consaul to Minerva
- Milford Street east side form Consaul to Minerva
- Woodford Street west side from Consaul and Whittemore
In addition to the above closures the following streets will be closed on Friday evening, August 19, to facilitate the Annual Waiter’s Race associated with the festival.
- Consaul Street between Front Street and Woodford
- Bakewell between Consaul & Bogar
Bakewell will remain closed for the duration of the festival.
One of Toledo’s oldest and most popular ethnic festivals, The Birmingham Ethnic Festival: “A Weekend in the Old Country” has been held for the past 42 years to celebrate the strength and diversity of our community, our success in preventing the splitting of our neighborhood by a proposed road widening project, and our continuing fight for the preservation and recognition of our neighborhood.
The 42nd festival will feature popular Hungarian foods including: Chicken Paprikás, Hunky Turkey (Roasted Bacon Sandwich), Stuffed Cabbage, Homemade Kolbász / Sausage Sandwiches, Gulyás(Goulash), Palacsinta(crepes), Cabbage and Noodles, Pastries and a fantastic array of other ethnic foods on Consaul Street. Chicken Paprikás Dinners will be sold on Saturday (at 4:30PM) & Sunday (at Noon) at Calvin United, and at St. Stephen’s from 12PM-3PM (Sunday only).
The hours for the Festival are 12:00 noon to 10:00 P.M. on Saturday and 12:00 noon to 9:00 P.M. on Sunday.
As an unofficial opening to the Festival Weekend, the 21st Annual Waiters’ Race will occur on Friday night, August 19 at 7PM. The race, with relay teams of four carrying trays with a full pitcher and two glasses of beer, has become one of the most popular events at the Festival. Entertainment and refreshments will be available at the VFW Post 4906 prior to and after the race. Be sure to come down to Consaul Street and join in the festivities!
On Sunday, August 21st, a Recognition Ceremony will be held at 12:00 Noon on the steps of St. Stephen’s Church, beginning with a flag raising ceremony, announcement of the recipient of the Birmingham Friend of the Neighborhood Award, recognition of local and international guests, and presentation of the Beer Keg Trophy to the winner of the Waiters’ Race.
Ethnic dance groups will perform both Saturday and Sunday on the three Main Stages at the St Stephen’s / Hungarian Club site, Calvin United and VFW 4906 on Consaul Street.
Scheduled performers include Folk Factory from Pittsburgh, PA (Hungarian folk dancing), Holzhacker Buam Schuhplattlers, Molly’s Irish Dancers, Bavarian Sports Club Schuhplattlers, Echoes of Poland, Matt Keeler (Folk Musician), Carlos Ochoa, and El Corazon de Mexico. A táncház (dance workshop) will occur at Calvin United lot on Saturday, August 20th at 5PM and on Sunday, August 21st at 4PM at the VFW.
Életfa Ensemble from New Jersey and Harmonia Band from Cleveland, Ohio will perform traditional Hungarian folk music throughout the weekend.
Popular bands will be performing a great variety of music both days in the evening on the three Main Stages. Bands to be featured include: Bobby May & Dry Bones Revival,
Tru Brew, and East River Drive Band.
Food and craft vendors will also be selling their colorful and creative wares on the Consaul Street mall.
Handicap parking is available off of Front and Burr Streets, with transportation available to the festival and facilities throughout the festival grounds.
Come enjoy a Weekend in the Old Country as well as a great Toledo neighborhood tradition with great food, music, dance and refreshments in the historic Birmingham Neighborhood.
Below is a partial list of the vendors taking part in the 42nd Annual Birmginahm Ethnic Festival:
Sabo African Products
Ohio Bath Solutions
H & R Block
Toledo Hemp Center
Children’s Hunger Alliance
J & M Heating and Cooling
SATURDAY, AUGUST 20th
Calvin United Church of Christ
1 -2 PM RON SZILAGYE-SAXOPHONE
2:00 PM BAVARIAN SPORTSCLUB HOLZHACKER SCHUHPLATTLERS
2:30 PM CARLOS OCHOA-SINGING
3 -4 PM MATT KEELER-FOLK MUSIC
4:00 PM MOLLYS IRISH DANCERS
5 -9 PM TÁNCHÁZ with Harmonia from Cleveland, Ohio- Hungarian, Slovak, Ukranian dance music
Epiphany/St. Stephen’s Catholic Church
1-2 PM MATT KEELER
2:00 PM MOLLY’S IRISH DANCERS
2:30 PM BAVARIAN SPORTSCLUB HOLZHACKER SCHUHPLATTLERS
3 – 3:45 PM HARMONIA BAND-Cleveland, Ohio-Hungarian, Slovak, Ukranian folk music
3:45 PM CARLOS OCHOA-SINGING
5:00-10 PM TRU BREW
SUNDAY, AUGUST 21st
Opening Ceremonies with Életfa Ensemble 11:45AM-12PM
Hungarian/American National Anthems
CALVIN UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST
1:00 PM MATT KEELER
1:30 PM MOLLY’S IRISH DANCERS
2:00 PM EL CORAZON DE MEXICO
2:30 PM FOLK FACTORY-Pittsburgh, PA, Hungarian Folk Dancing
3:00 PM ÉLETFA ENSEMBLE-New Jersey, Hungarian Folk Music
3:30 PM TOLEDO HOLZHACKER BUAM SCHUHPLATTLERS
4:00 PM ECHOES OF POLAND
5 – 9 PM EAST RIVER DRIVE BAND
ST. STEPHEN’S CATHOLIC CHURCH
1:00 PM ÉLETFA ENSEMBLE- New Jersey, Hungarian Folk Music
1:30 PM FOLK FACTORY- Pittsburgh, PA, Hungarian Folk Dancing
2:00 PM MATT KEELER
2:30 PM MOLLY’S IRISH DANCERS
3:00 PM ECHOES OF POLAND
3:30 PM EL CORAZON DE MEXICO
4:00 PM TOLEDO HOLZHACHER BUAM SCHUHPLATTLERS
5 – 9 PM TRU BREW
1:00 PM ECHOES OF POLAND
1:30 PM CARLOS OCHOA
2:00 PM TOLEDO HOLZHACKER BUAM SCHUHPLATTLERS
2:30 PM MATT KEELER
3:00 PM MOLLY’S IRISH DANCERS
3:30 PM FOLK FACTORY-Pittsburgh, PA, Hungarian Folk Dancing
4 – 6 PM TÁNCHÁZ with ÉLETFA ENSEMBLE-Hungarian Folk Music
6 – 9 PM BOBBY MAY & DRY BONES REVIVAL
Entertainment Schedule is subject to change.
Thank you to everyone who attended the 41st Annual Birmingham Ethnic Festival. We hope you had a good time, and we’ll see you next year on the 3rd weekend in August.
If you’re interested in getting involved, the next meeting of the Festival Committee is on September 24th, at 7PM at the Hungarian Club of Toledo at 224 Paine Avenue.
Our meetings are always held at that time and place on a monthly basis, feel free to join us or email firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved.
The Birmingham Ethnic Festival Committee is honored to dedicate the 41st Annual Festival to two great ladies of our neighborhood: Gizella Bochi and Elizabeth Bochi.
The Bochi sisters Gizi and Betty, as we all know them, have dedicated their lives to their family, church and community, and to the preservation of our Hungarian American culture and traditions.
The last two surviving Charter members of VFW Post 4906 Women’s Auxiliary, they have been faithful members and volunteers at the Post all these years. They received their Charter at the VFW Hall, which was upstairs in a building on Front Street between the old fire station and Red Star Pharmacy!
At St. Stephen’s Church (Epiphany of the Lord Parish), they have both been Eucharistic ministers, Rosary mothers, and members of the Altar and Rosary Societies, not to mention some of the hardest workers at any event at the parish.
Their passion for their Hungarian culture motivated both of them to learn Hungarian embroidery from Kati, brought to the neighborhood by Father Martin Hernady, to renew this tradition in our community. They became active in both the St. Stephen’s embroidery group as well as the one at the “Reformatus Templom.”
Their lifelong curiosity and interest in broadening their horizons inspired them to become members of the Friends of the Birmingham Library Group for over 30 years, joining soon after they took part in the Birmingham Neighborhood Coalition’s successful battle to save the Birmingham library for our community. Along with dozens of parishioners and residents, they helped to withdraw thousands of books to “up” the circulation and convince the Toledo-Lucas County Library Board to keep the library open. It is an important part of our neighborhood to this day!
Betty worked at Tiedtke’s and, for many years, at Steins clothing store in Downtown Toledo. She was an active member and officer in the Local 12 UAW union, leading numerous blood drives for over 20 years for the community. Gizi was a businesswomen operating her own beauty parlor, Rudan’s, until the 1970s, in Downtown Toledo, keeping many customers very happy.
Both were world travelers, visiting not only Magyar Orszag, but many other countries, including going to Cuba in 1947, losing theirpassports and only getting back into the USA by using their VFW cards to prove their citizenship!
They have not missed a Festival in 41 years and have probably worked at all of them!
These two ladies, Gizella at the young age of 94 and Elizabeth at 90, represent the heart and soul of our great ethnic neighborhood.
A relay team consisting of 4 members will carry a tray with a pitcher of beer and 2 glasses. Exchanges will occur throughout the course down Consaul Street. The team to finish first AND with the most beer remaining in the glasses and pitcher wins the race. Points are awarded for order of finish and amount of beer remaining.
Join us on Friday, August 14 at 7PM on Consaul Street to watch Calvin United defend their title against the other teams!
The Cakewalkin’ Jass Band will provide entertainment. Once the race is over, stick around for the fun at VFW 4906, where there will be hamburgers and chips for sale.
Waiter’s Race past champions
1996 – Rumpus Room
1997 – Knights of Columbus
1998 – Tony Packo’s Restaurant
1999 – Rumpus Room/East Side Raiders
2000 – Consaul Tavern
2001 – Rumpus Room/East Side Raiders
2002 – Rumpus Room/East Side Raiders
2003 – Rumpus Room/East Side Raiders
2004 – Rumpus Room/East Side Raiders
2005 – Hungarian Club
2006 – Hungarian Club
2007 – Hungarian Club
2008 – Hungarian Club
2009 – Hungarian Club
2010 – Hungarian Club
2011 – Steelworkers
2012 – Hungarian Club
2013 – Hungarian Club
2014- Calvin United Church of Christ