Tuesday, February 1, 2011
- The annual Fastnacht Bake originated in 1924. This is our 88th year. It was an idea created by women of the Altar Rosary Society, of the church, to raise money to help offset construction costs of a new church building.
- Church construction began in 1926 and was completed with a dedication and blessing in October, 1929.
- Fastnacht (FAHS-nahkt) is related to the Germanic word Fasten (to fast, abstain from eating). The definition of fastnacht - a yeast-raised potato pastry that is deep-fried like a doughnut. Fastnachts were originally made on Shrove Tuesday to use up the stored fat and lard that was forbidden during Lent.
- In the early days of the bake all ingredients were hand mixed and the fastnachts were fashioned from molds originally made from tuna fish cans.
- Unsalted potatoes were used during Lent and the potato water was then used to make yeast. The potato yeast would “work” for several hours before being mixed into the flour.
- Today the Fastnacht Bake has evolved into a parish project that includes about 116 men and women volunteers. It is one of the largest fund raising efforts of the parish.
- January 25, 1989 the national spotlight was focused on the Fastnacht Bake. NBC’s Willard Scott, from the TODAY Show, originated all of his weather segments “live” from Holy Trinity in Columbia.
- The process of making fastnachts begins with the Night Crew. Approximately 20 to 25 volunteers measure, weigh and mix the ingredients producing on average 56 batches. The dough is poured into largemetal cans. These are then placed in the “warming closet” to allow the dough to rise during the night.
The army of rollers begin arriving at 4:00am to start rolling, shaping and cutting the dough into fastnachts. Each batch or can of dough will produce approximately 11.4 dozen. After shaping and cutting the fastnachts they are placed on long cloth covered boards for further rising. When the fastnachts are properly raised they are transferred to the frying area.
Other volunteers arrive around 5:30am to operate the fryers. Six frying units will be in continuous operation for six hours. After frying in a cholesterol free substance they reach the peak of perfection and are placed in cooling trays. The next step is the glazing process, which is all done by hand.
Still other volunteers handle the sorting, counting and bagging, in preparation for pickup by the public or delivery to area factories and other places of business.
- Fastnachts are baked on Monday, March 7, Shrove Tuesday, March 8 and Ash Wednesday, March 9. After that, there are four weeks of bakes during Lent, on Mondays and Wednesdays only. The last bake is Wednesday, April 6th.
- More than seven thousand dozen fastnachts are produced during the Lenten Season. The operation takes place in the Holy Trinity Parish Center, 4th and Cherry Streets, Columbia, site of Our Lady of the Angels School.
- Fastnachts must be pre-ordered by dialing 717-684-0487. Telephone lines are open between 9:00am and 6:00pm, Monday through Friday, beginning, Monday February 28th.
- Plain fastnachts sell for $5.00 per dozen and $2.50 per half-dozen. Glazed are $6.25 a dozen and $3.25 per half-dozen.
- Orders must be picked up at the Parish Center between 10:00am and 1:00pm on the designated days. All orders not claimed by 1:00pm will be sold.
Secret to success –
- Family tradition
- Parish Unity
- Each volunteer considers the Bake a labor of love.
- Our secret recipe that makes Holy Trinity’s the best tasting fastnacht in the world. . . . Ask Our Customers!
Police said the two forced their way through a back door into a store room and took $5,000 worth of cell phones in less than a minute. The suspects are pictured and anyone with any information is ask to call police at 285-5191.
Police are also investigating damage down to a car parked in the first block of Lincoln West Drive, Jan. 31. A car owned by Anna Rosario had its driver's side door kicked in.