Saint Faustina Festival

NANTICOKE — Good things are cooking at the Saint Faustina Parish grove in Nanticoke. The annual church homecoming festival kicked off Friday.

The festival is manned by dozens of dedicated volunteers.

“We make 10 thousand pierogies, we make 50 pans of haluski, all of our food is homemade,” said festival chairman Dennis Morgis.

The festival is famous for its potato pancakes and with temperatures in the 90’s Friday night, the folks there called the pancakes kitchen ‘purgatory.’

“I used to keep a thermometer in here, but then the people got upset when it shot above 110 or 112 degrees, so I quit doing that,” said Jim Samselski, who has helped make potato pancakes for decades.

For many, eating at the festival is a tradition.

“For me? Coming for the pierogies, and a sausage sandwich, I like my sausage sandwiches,” said Edwin Matthews of Nanticoke, who until this year used to work at the festival.

“Just getting together with all the people from, now that we’re all one parish in town, so everybody can mingle with each other,” said his wife, Arlene.

Other than the food, of course, there are other things to do here at the festival.

“There’s the music that you can listen to and the games that you play,” said Paula Rizzo of Nanticoke.

Festival organizers said the festival is the biggest fundraiser of the year and they are hoping to net about 45 thousand or more.

The money helps to keep the church going, but they said this festival means much more than that.

“We have fun, we sweat and there’s some pain but it’s for the good of the church,” said Morgis.

The festival continues in Nanticoke through Sunday.