Summer Tour

Discover the rich Polish heritage of Central Nebraska. Discover the Polish communities of Tarnov, Ashton, and Paplin. Tour historic Polish Catholic churches and community museums.

Tuesday, August 13, 2024
7:30 am – 7:00 pm
Tour starts at Polish Home, 201 East 1st Street, Papillion, NE
$120 per person

Price includes coach transportation, driver gratuity, museum donations, lunch, and lunch

Tour reservation deadline July 12, 2024

Highlights: Polish Heritage Center Inc. in Ashton - Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Paplin - St. Michael’s Catholic Church & Tarnov Heritage Museum - Polish lunch

This morning, we travel to central Nebraska to explore the strong Polish heritage of Sherman County. Even today, Sherman County has one of the highest percentages of Polish Americans in the United States. We begin with a tour of the Polish Heritage Center and museum in Ashton, Nebraska. Explore the unique displays and interesting documents related to the settlement of Polish settlers in the area. Lunch today is across the street at the St. Francis Catholic Church where you will enjoy a buffet with a variety of Polish dishes.

Later this afternoon, we travel into the rural countryside to visit the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in the abandoned town of Paplin, Nebraska. Paplin was established in the 1880s. Today the only reminder of the town is the church, fellowship hall, and cemetery. The beautiful church has been slowly restored by a group of dedicated people in the area. Today we enjoy a guided tour of the church to view its altar and learn about its interesting history.

Our last destination is Tarnov, Nebraska, which was founded in 1889. A large number of settlers named it Tarnov after emigrating from the Tarnow, Poland area. On August 19, 1943, the U.S. Army dropped seven practice bombs on Tarnov, mistaking the few lights of the small town as their nighttime target. Luckily no Tarnov residents were harmed but some damage was done to their houses. At its peak in 1930, the town’s population was 139 people; today’s population is 52. Upon arrival, we will tour the historic 1901 St. Michael’s Catholic Church, Memorial Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes, and the Tarnov Heritage Museum. The museum is housed in the building that served as a former boarding school and convent.

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