The Pavelka-Hodde families have spawned several generations of polka musicians. For a while, four generations of that family shared a stage.
See more great photos at polkabeat.com/flickr
Family bands are not that rare an occurrence in the polka music world with most of them being composed of multiple layers of relations with a few slots filled in by friends. In the 1900s, there was the traditional nuclear family in rural lifestyles, i.e. a set of parents giving guidance and numerous children hovering around performing the necessary chores to provide the income financial and material needs to survive. Music was an inexpensive recreation that all members could participate in and brought happiness to all concerned.
For a half century, the historic Bluff Schuetzenverein invited people from across Texas to gather on the Bluff overlooking La Grange. They participated in marksmanship competitions, celebrated the holidays, enjoyed picnics, played games for young and old, and danced to German folk music. The Bluff became a favorite gathering place among German-Texans between the 1870s and 1920s. In many ways, the Schuetzenverein provided the glue that held the community together. The Friends of Kreische Brewery & Monument Hill State Historic Sites and the Texas Historical Commission are excited to bring back many of the Schuetzenverein’s traditions and celebrations with the second annual Bluff SchuetzenFest on Saturday, May 20.
A big time was had by lots of folks at the South Texas Polka & Sausage Festival in Hallettville on March 25-27.