Celebrating a tradition
For the Star-News
BRUSSELS – The Belgian Heritage Center (BHC) will host its annual Belgian Kermiss on Aug. 20, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
A kermiss is a traditional harvest festival that is open to the whole community featuring Belgian food, beer, music and camaraderie.
“Kermisses were traditionally celebrated in each small community in the Belgian settlement on consecutive weeks beginning before Labor Day and extending into October. The celebration would begin with a Catholic Mass followed by gatherings in the homes, taverns, and dancehalls. Relatives and friends would come from all the neighboring areas to partake of the abundance of food, especially huge numbers of Belgian pies,” an event release stated.
Antique farm implement demonstrations will illustrate life on the farm in past years.
History buffs may view the Belgian Heritage Center’s exhibits as well as take a guided tour of the historic 1894 schoolhouse located on the BHC campus.
“This year there will be a display honoring the first Belgian families who settled in this area in 1853, 170 years ago. In addition, there will be a movie prop exhibit from the new film, Room 108: The Clearing, with a talk by the director, Freddy Moyano at 1:30 p.m. Scenes from the movie were filmed at the Belgian Heritage Center,” the release added.
“There will be a raffle and silent auction which provides an opportunity to win a variety of gifts all donated by local businesses and individuals who are committed to the mission of preserving the area’s unique Belgian heritage.
“The Belgian food served will include booyah, trippe (a Belgian sausage similar to a bratwurst), hamburgers, jutt, Belgian pies, tortes, and old-fashioned ice-creammade on site by using the power drive on a tractor.”
In addition to the regular selection of beer served, the Kermiss will feature brews from two of the area’s craft breweries.
All proceeds will benefit the Belgian Heritage Center and its ongoing projects.
Mad Cats will provide a mix of country, rock, and pop music from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Belgian Heritage Center is located at 1255 County Rd. DK, Brussels.
For more information on the Belgian Heritage Center, visit www.belgianheritagecenter.org.