Tuesday, June 7, 2011

JohnnyFest 3.0

This past weekend, we held our 3rd annual JohnnyFest. My dad passed away 2 years and 5 months ago, and today is his birthday. We throw this big ass party around his birthday and invite friends and family to eat and drink and laugh and tell stories about John/Jack/dad. I wrote about last year’s JohnnyFest here.

We had a good crowd this year, and they even stuck around during the really bad storm that arrived mid-party. We all had to run in the house and take cover. The power would go out every three minutes. And when the storm was over, there was a tree down on Moose’s car.

(My dad and his buddies all had crazy nicknames. There was Camel, Moose, Beaver, Porky, and on and on).

Moose was such a great sport. He said, “Jack never did like me.” Then he went across the street, borrowed a chain saw, and cut the branches off his car.
untitled shoot-056.jpg
Moose’s wife’s name is Peggy and when I was in the kitchen, I heard her telling my mom that she wanted to throw a “MooseFest”. Of course, I marched right outside and told Moose that Peggy was planning a MooseFest. He said, “A party for when I die?” I said, “Yup.” Yeah, lots of good people at this party.

A few of my second cousins that I hadn’t seen years came to the party. And, actually, they are the reason I thought to have this party. It seems like there are some members of my family that I only see at funerals or wakes these days, and at my dad’s wake, my cousins and I were talking about that, and I decided that I would plan a party so that I could see people on happy occasions, not just for sad reasons. Hence, JohnnyFest was born.

We even had crazy fortune cookies made this year. My 7-year-old nephew, Cooper, had a great time reading them aloud for everyone:

“Johnny says…don’t be a cheapass.”

“Johhny says…eat well, drink well, shit well.”
You get the picture.
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Happy birthday dad, I miss you so much.

Here is a slideshow from the festivities.

Untitled from Natalie Mikolajczak on Vimeo.


  1. What an awesome way to remember your Dad! Mine passed away 12/5/2004. It's been a little over 6 years. I can't believe it. :( I miss him every day too. Maybe this year, we will throw a Marcel-a-palooza in his honor.

    :) xxoo LW

  2. Nicely done - the party and the video. Fun times. :)

  3. Good ol' summertime JohnnyFest. Lots of fun & laughter. Fond memories & good people. I'm sure that Jack had a smile on his face all day long. xox Nancy

  4. Love it! And that is an awesome chainsaw photo!