Sixty Years ago, as the result of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution, a large number of Hungarians moved into the Oliver- Osoyoos area to join the already settled “ old timers”, who came here in the 1930-s and 1940-s.
Those days the mail boxes were along the highway and if a Hungarian drove from Oliver to the border, reading the names on the mail boxes, he might have thought he was in “ little Hungary “, Pocsik, Mozak, Kangyal, Endreny, Eisenhut, Koteles, Keller, or Barnay.
The new arrivals soon settled in and in a few years formed The South Okanagan Hungarian Club. For about three decades, 3-4 times a year, 3-400 residents of the South Okanagan enjoyed good parties and great tasting Hungarian foods like cabbage rolls, rice sausage, chicken paprikas, kolbas, etc.
As time flew by, it took its toll on the club members. The parties got less and less in number and smaller and smaller in attendance. Nevertheless, the club is still in existence and at this years Harvest Ball at the Elks Hall, an overflow crowd of a 100 people paid their respect to the still living “ originals “. Hungarian music, Hungarian chicken soup, cabbage rolls,hurka (rice sausage), kolbas, roast and all the trimmings were thoroughly enjoyed by the crowd.
Thank you to everybody, especially to club president JOE BENCZE and his family, Monica Nemes for her hard work and organizing ability, Zsuzsa and Karoly for their hard work. Merry Christmas to everybody.
Photo and story: John Kiss