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Happy Paczki Day – Or Whatever You Happen to Call It

by Matt DeLaere, Marketing

    Paczki Day    
[Image from http://sheblogsfunny.blogspot.com]

It’s Shrove Tuesday, the day before Lent begins. Maybe you call it Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, or Pancake Tuesday, but if you’re in the Detroit area (or anywhere with a large Polish population), it’s Paczki Day. Wait, make that pączki – if we’re going to do this, we might as well do it right.

Pączki are basically jelly doughnuts. But they’re not. They’re better. Fried more. Doughier. Deliciouser. And pronunciation is a perennial battle, especially for the uninitiated. The most common pronunciation you’ll hear is “poonch-key,” while “punchkey” is also popular. From my Polish grandmother (and an email from my mom this morning) the correct way to say it is “poinshki.” But, as the T-shirt at left attests, they’re good no matter how you say it – as is proven by early-morning lines at bakeries around the Detroit area (I was only in line for about half an hour).

And fillings, don’t get people started on fillings! From those who claim that real pączki aren’t filled to those who prefer traditional fruit jams and tut-tut all those fake jelly fillings, you’ll find as many filling opinions as there are pronunciations. While they’re available in flavors like strawberry, lemon, custard, and even chocolate, the hard-liners stick to traditional prune-filled pączki.

    Paczki Power    
[Image from http://www.mlive.com]

So, what do doughnuts have to do with T-shirts? Quite a bit, it seems. While holidays like Halloween and St. Patrick’s Day stick out as logical choices for custom shirts, smaller, more localized celebrations produce T-shirts, too. With bakeries celebrating the day, restaurants hosting special dinners, bars trying to make a Polish version of St. Patrick’s Day, and even charity runs (make sure to eat your pączki after the run), there are plenty of opportunities to turn this tradition, or whatever tradition is local to your area, into a big day for your business, too with custom T-shirts, caps, and more.

Always keep your eyes open for new opportunities and your vinyl cutter and CAD-CUT® heat transfer materials at the ready; inspiration can come from anywhere – even the middle of a jelly doughnut.

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