Wet Monday at Muza, Polish holiday honored
Smigus-dyngus—also known as Wet Monday—is a Polish holiday celebrated on the Monday after Easter, where Polish boys and girls douse their crush with buckets of water and hit them with pussy willow branches. Although the origins of the tradition are not known exactly, its roots can be traced back to pagan times as a ritual to bring good harvests. While the tradition might sound confusing and borderline illegal, the Polish diaspora celebrates this lighthearted day throughout Polish communities around the world all the same.
On Monday, the local Polish restaurant, Muza, celebrated the day with traditional food, drink, and music. The menu featured homemade kiełbasa, gołabki—which is a popular Polish dish of cabbage stuffed with meat—pierogi, kiełbasa soup, and some bar items like European-influenced tacos. Overall, the food was true to traditional Polish cuisine; the kiełbasa had its signature snap when you cut into it, the soup was hot and hearty, and the pierogi were obviously handmade, as you could see the painstaking creases that were made to contain the potato-cheese filling.
Out by the bar, Polish-Americans celebrated by getting their pussy willow branches and getting down to well-known polka tunes. Muza did a great job of setting a fun vibe with their choice of music. While the polka band that played wasn’t terribly traditional—I heard too many German drinking songs and mispronounced Polish words—it might have been more appropriate to attract the average second or third generation Polish-American, and definitely didn’t stop people from having a good time.
If you’re looking for a good time akin to that of St Patrick’s Day, Muza’s Dyngus Day celebration offers good food, drink, and music. And who knows, maybe you’ll even get spanked and a little wet, too!