česky  english 

Advanced search
Photo: J. Kantůrek
Article notification Print Decrease font size Increase font size

Wilber Czech Festival

On August 2 - 4, 2019, the 58th traditional Czech festival took place in a small Nebraskan town called Wilber. This festival is also known as the largest compatriot festival in the USA. Every year, tens of thousands of visitors attend these festivities and the festival also includes the finals of the Miss Czech-Slovak US Pageant competition in addition to the rich folklore program.

Wilber was proclaimed by the Nebraska Governor as the Czech capital of Nebraska in 1963, and in 1987 the US Congress even adopted a resolution declaring Wilber the capital of Czechs throughout the United States. Nebraska is one of the traditional centers of Czech immigration, where the share of Czech Americans in the total population exceeds 5%. There are typical bilingual signs in the city and the slogan "Vítáme Vás" is located in many public buildings. The words "koláče" or "polka" are a common part of the English language in this part of the US.

A festive parade with allegorical cars together with music and dance performances of local ensembles (brass bands, bagpipers, accordionists), dance competitions, cooking Czech meals and mini Czech lessons are a big part of the festival. This year's parade was lead by Wilber Mayor Mr. Roger Chrans with his wife, Consul General Jaroslav Kantůrek with his wife and the main organizers of the festival, Mrs. Larry & Teri Shestak. Mr. Larry Shestak is also a longtime chairman of the local compatriot association Nebraska Czechs of Wilber.

Anna Tombazzi, Czech and Slovak Miss California became the Czech Queen in the USA for the upcoming year. Winners of the states of Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Kansas, Minnesota, Texas, Nebraska, Missouri and California had to present folk costume and prove their knowledge of Czech history and culture in the Wilber finals. The winners of the competitions work throughout the year as “ambassadors” of Czech and Slovak culture not only at compatriot festivals throughout the United States.

For more information and pictures of all contestants please visit the website of Miss Czechoslovak USA or Facebook.



Wilber Czech Festival 2019