Category Archives: Events

Polish Explorers Night in New York

Dear Polish Explorers, Presenters, Organizers and Supporters of the Polish Branch of The Explorers Club:

The First Polish Evening at The Explorers Club in NYC that took place on October 18th, 2022, with the room filled to the very last seat, exceeded our expectations greatly.

From the statements of TEC officers and the public, I concluded that the efficient organization, the exhibition of the photograms for the 40th anniversary of the discovery of the Colca Canyon in Peru, (borrowed from Washington by Piotr Chmieliński- the coordinator of the Polish Evening), the punctuality and- above all- the presented topics, won the well-deserved recognition of our guests.

In a conversation with the TEC President Richard Garriot and Ann Passer, who participated in all the presentations, I pointed out that although the Polish Branch does not have access to NASA or the most modern bathyscaphes, we too, are working intensively in many areas and document our discoveries all over the world. At the event we had the pleasure of hosting Tadeusz Kościński, the Secretary of State in the Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Poland, representatives of LOT Polish Airlines (one of the sponsors of the Polish Evening), and Adrian Kubicki, the Consul General of the Republic of Poland in New York, along with his deputy Stanisław Starnawski. The Consulate of the Republic of Poland has prepared gifts for our guests in the form of beautiful books and publications about Poland.

Presentations of the achievements of the Polish Branch of TEC were the depiction of our daily activity and were carefully selected to address the current events in the world.

Monika Rogozińska despite her personal absence in NYC, virtually presented the achievements of our explorers in the recent decades in several areas. The story of the winter ascents to  some of the highest peaks in the world, including Mount Everest, immediately gave our presentations the level of recognition and admiration they deserved.

The exploration of the mountains of Siberia by the youngest presenter Maciej Besta, is an exotic topic for Americans, bringing the cold air from endless empty stretches of Asia. Maciej has combined his Siberian passion with his current research work, inviting the audience to some samples of his latest findings.

The fate of Poles on the eastern frontier of the Second Polish Republic in the face of today’s war in Ukraine was told touchingly by Tomasz Grzywaczewski and illustrated with photographs taken by his wife Kaja.

The search for ORP “Orzeł” presented by Tomasz Stachurski is a story more familiar to hearts of Americans, as they continue to find the wreckage of their planes and ships, examine genetic remains, and organize official burials of their fallen soldiers. The epic voyage of the lost “Eagle” has yet to wait for its final discovery.

The story of the struggle of Iranian women fighting for their rights, told and illustrated by Elżbieta Wnuk-Lisowska, was very timely at the moment of the Ayatollahs counter-revolution and the recent death of a young woman in Tehran at the hands of the Iranian morality policy.  

What a great coincidence of topics!

The treasures stolen by the Swedes from palaces and the Royal Castle in Warsaw, the story of their beauty and size, and the sight of University of Warsaw’s model of the palace under reconstruction based on the recently recovered fragments extracted from the Vistula River, must have aroused admiration in New York City, as it continues to demolish its own historical smaller buildings, replacing them with sky piercing “needles”.

Andrzej Ciszewski sent in two films about the penetration of the deepest and longest caves on several continents. His carefully selected photos and videos captivated attention with the colors of the caves, exotic stalactite formations found hundreds of meters underground and filled the viewers with thrills at the sight of exploring speleologists.

The last presentation, a combination of the discovery of the Rio Colca Canyon in Peru by a group of Polish canoeists, with the latter birth of the 20-year-old English Language School created by the former director of the “Canoandes 81” expedition, Andrzej Piętowski, was a positive surprise of its own kind. Discovery expeditions usually focus on sports’ records, efforts to protect researched areas or save endangered species, In this case, the audience learned about the fusion of exploration and education that strive towards the improvement of the living conditions of the local population.

All presentations were awarded with thunderous applause.

On Wednesday evening, October 19th, 2022, The Explorers Club in Manhattan filled up again for the viewing of Godspeed, Los Polacos!. A work of two young filmmakers from New Jersey, Sonia Szczęsna and Adam Nawrot, a film that won several awards and distinctions at international mountain and film festivals on three continents. After the screening, the filmmakers and kayakers Piotr Chmieliński, Jurek Majcherczyk and Andrzej Piętowski had a conversation with the audience. The audience was gifted unique pins prepared specifically for the premiere of the film in Poland.

After the events of the Polish Evening, the Club Officers announced that they would use our presentation format to briefly present the achievements of other Chapters. We presented ourselves to the American audience as a Branch that brings together several generations of explorers whose common denominator is enthusiasm, passion for difficult challenges, the ability to communicate their emotions and experiences, and to inspire others with their achievements.

In my personal opinion, as the vice-president of the Polish TEC Branch, it was an extremely fruitful and interesting event, full of impressions both in terms of content and social interactions.

Andrzej Andrew Piętowski                                       
10/21/22 Chicago

Organizers of the event: The Explorers Club, Polish Branch of The Explores Club and Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in New York.

Special thanks to LOT Polish Airlines, partner of Polish Evening at the headquarters of The

Explorers Club in New York.

The Polish Branch of The Explorers Club received for the organization of the Polish Day at the headquarters of The Explorers Club in New York financial support from the Ministry of Education and Science in the form of grant no. DNK / SN / 552860/2022.

Chapter Connect – Poland

Join us tonight for another new episode of Chapter Connect, this time with our Poland Chapter! We’ll introduce you to Mariusz Ziółkowski FI’02, Chair of the Poland Chapter, in conversation with V.P. of Chapters Tim Radke MN’13.
Featuring special guests –
Monika Rogozińska MED’93 – How the Chapter was born
Marcin Jamkowski FI’05 – The deepest underwater cave – Hranicka Propast in Czech Republic
Tomasz Stachura FI’13 – Wreck of Karlsruhe in the Baltic Sea
Benedykt Hac FI’15 – Stuttgart: The most dangerous wreck in the south Baltic Sea
Hubert Kowalski FI’17 – Underwater rescue of artifacts from the Swedish occupation of Poland in the 17th century
Tomasz Grzywaczewski FI’14 – The Death Road across Siberia
Andrzej Ciszewski FI’99 – Cave Explorations in China
Mateusz Waligóra FI’20 – Solo unsupported Gobi desert crossing on foot and Vistula River walk
Maciej Klósak FI’19 – In Szolc-Rogiński’s footsteps in Cameroon
Anna Urbańska FI’14 & Jakub Urbański FI’14 – Cannibals of Papua New Guinea
Andrzej Piętowski FI’09 – First kayak expedition down the Colca Canyon, Peru

To watch the stream, simply visit our homepage at explorers.org, our YouTube channel, or live on our Facebook page – Thursday, January 21 at 3:00 pm ET (21:00 in Poland)


Mariusz Ziółkowski FI’02 – Poland Chapter Chair

Mariusz Ziółkowski FI’02 is a Professor of Archaeology of the Americas at the University of Warsaw, Poland. He is also the Director of the Center for Andean Studies of the University of Warsaw in Cusco, and Extraordinary Professor at the Universidad Católica Santa María de Arequipa, Peru.
Ziółkowski specializes in Inca archaeology and ethnohistory, absolute dating techniques, archaeoastronomy, and has taken part in archaeological work in Poland, Iraq, Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia. He was decorated with the Order of Merit, in the rank of Officer, by the Government of the Republic of Peru in 1998.
He is the author of several books, including – “Pachap unancha. The Metropolitan Calendar of the Inca State” (Ediciones El Lector, Arequipa 2015) & “Myths, rituals and politics of the Incas” (with Jan Szemiński – Ediciones El Lector, Arequipa 2018).

Two prestigious awards for a member of the Polish Chapter

Krzysztof Wielicki FI’1997 (Lowell Thomas Award’2001) received Piolet d’Or Carriere – Golden Ice Axe Lifetime Achievement Award, considered the highest honor in mountaineering. Wielicki is a fifth man who climbed all 14 eight-thousanders (The Crown of the Himalayas and Karakoram) and the first who summitted three of them in winter, including Mt Everest. He is still active, he led two winter expeditions to K2, the last unconquered in winter eight-thousander. Czytaj dalej

The Award Benedict the Pole

On the initiative of the Polish Chapter, on May 28, 2014 at the Castle in Łęczyca, an Agreement was signed on the creation of the Award. The signatories who created the Award Chapter are representatives of the Polish Chapter of the Explorers Club, the City Hall of Łęczyca, the County of Łęczyca and the Warsaw Scientific Society. The prize is awarded annually for outstanding exploration and research achievements on earth, in the sea and in space in the following categories:

1. Grand Award for a Polish citizen,
2. Award for a foreigner distinguished in cooperation with Polish researchers.
The prize aims to promote Polish exploratory achievements and to remind, through the person of the Patron, the historical significance that our country has played in the field of intercultural contacts.

Special Awards are also granted for outstanding achievements in the field of exploration.
The jury has 12 members; its chairman is currently prof. dr hab. Stanisław Rakusa Suszczewski. All Winners become Honorary Members of the Award Chapter.
The seat of the Award Chapter is the Royal Castle in Łęczyca, where usually in February the names of the winners of subsequent editions are announced.

The ceremonies of the first four editions of the Award (2015 – 2018) were held at the Archdiocese of Tum near Łęczyca (more information about the Prize on the website – link), while the fifth edition took place on May 15, 2019 at the Royal Castle in Warsaw.
The ceremony of the 6th edition is planned for June 3rd, 2020 in the auditorium of the Collegium Maius (15th century) of the Jagiellonian University in Kraków (link)

Poles on the Silk Road – Asia, Pacific 2016

In order to promote the knowledge about the history of exploration, Polish Chapter of the Explorers Club in cooperation with the Institute of Archaeology, University of Warsaw and the Students Association for the Far East Archaeology organised an exhibition titled “Poles on the Silk Road”. Thanks to the financial support of the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education (project no.943/DUN/2016) the exhibition was shown to the wider public in the Museum of Asia and Pacific at Warsaw in October 2016.
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