Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Events

Folk dancing, food and fun bring life to Tampa Greek Festival

RECOMMENDED READING


TAMPA — The music and dancing never stops at the Tampa Greek Festival, the biggest fundraiser of the year for St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church in south Tampa.

"We invite everyone to watch ancient folk dances, eat authentic food and be Greek for a day," said Mike Xenick, a lifelong church member helping to organize the three-day fest opening today (Nov. 10) and continuing through late Sunday afternoon.

The church choir and four dance groups, ages 3 to adult, will entertain in traditional Greek attire. John Demas & the Omega Project perform on the main stage all weekend.

But it’s the Greek food for sale that really draws the crowd, hundreds of festival-goers who look forward all year to simmered lamb shank, lemon chicken, pastitsio (Greek lasagna), keftedes (Greek meatballs) and dolmades (grape leaves).

Greek and American coffee are served "Kafenion-style" alongside a row of breads and sweets including honey-soaked baklava, kourambiethes wedding cookies and diples honey and nut pastries. Small round donuts called loukoumades are fried to order by Engie Halkias as she has done every year since the first festival in 1981.

Ouzo cocktails and Greek beers are available in the Opa! Party Tent where guitarist and bouzouki instructor Demas plays with the Omega Project from 8 p.m till closing.

Rather than dining in the Great Hall, sports fans might prefer eating in front of several large televisions set up in an adjacent tent dubbed the Grecian Gardens. For the younger crowd, the Kids’ Zone will offer a bounce house, carnival rides, games and craft activities.

Comments
5 things to do under $5 Nov. 23-30: Craft festival, License-Free Saltwater Fishing Day, Snow Bash

5 things to do under $5 Nov. 23-30: Craft festival, License-Free Saltwater Fishing Day, Snow Bash

1. Gem, Jewelry and Bead Show and Sale: Check out these rocks when more than 50 dealers from around the United States sell crystals, minerals, beads, gems and jewelry. $5. Coliseum, 535 Fourth Ave. N, St. Petersburg. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
This week’s best Tampa Bay concerts: Brian Setzer, Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith, 21 Savage, more

This week’s best Tampa Bay concerts: Brian Setzer, Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith, 21 Savage, more

SWINGIN’ AROUND THE CHRISTMAS TREE: Brian Setzer OrchestraWhen you spend 13 straight Thanksgivings on the road, you build some traditions with your crew. "We get a big ballroom," said Brian Setzer. "I don’t know how many turkeys we go through, but ev...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Some ways to celebrate Thanksgiving that aren’t Thanksgiving

Some ways to celebrate Thanksgiving that aren’t Thanksgiving

Happy Turkey Day!Or is it? Sometimes life just doesn’t come together at 2 p.m. on Thursday.Circumstances mean it’s not always possible to sit around the table on Thanksgiving, a family in a Publix ad smiling over a glistening bird. Maybe family is ou...
Updated: 3 hours ago
4 art exhibits to check out with family (or on your own) over Thanksgiving weekend

4 art exhibits to check out with family (or on your own) over Thanksgiving weekend

Perhaps you have relatives in town for the weekend, and you’re running out of ways to entertain them. Or maybe you’re wondering what to do with your long weekend. There’s a perfect solution for either scenario: Go see some art. There’s plenty on vi...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Top things to do this weekend: Lindsey Stirling, Faizon Love, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood Live

Top things to do this weekend: Lindsey Stirling, Faizon Love, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood Live

PULLING STRINGS: Lindsey StirlingDubstep violist Lindsey Stirling shot to fame as a quarter-finalist on America’s Got Talent in 2010 and she has been rocking the spangles on Dancing With the Stars this season as the last woman left . But on Friday yo...
Updated: 3 hours ago
If you’re going to see ‘A Christmas Carol’ redo, make it ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

If you’re going to see ‘A Christmas Carol’ redo, make it ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

The last thing this world needs is another rendition of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, likely the most remade, reimagined and ripped off literary property ever. At the same time, the world would be poorer without seeing Ebenezer Scrooge i...
Published: 11/22/17
Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Nov. 25

Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Nov. 25

Shopapalooza: 150 vendors, artists and local businesses. 10 a.m., Straub Park (Center), at Beach Drive and Fifth Avenue NE, St. Petersburg. Free (items individually priced). (727) 637-5586. John McLaughlin: One of music’s most influential guitarists....
Updated: 1 hour ago
Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Nov. 26

Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Nov. 26

21 Savage: The rapper has emerged as one of the most captivating young MCs in the game, known both for his monotone flow and his dark, brooding lyrics. His fiery run in 2017 produced his debut album, Issa, which spawned the hit single Bank Account. 7...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Mark your calendars: Here are the top holiday concerts, ‘Nutcracker’ shows and parades

Mark your calendars: Here are the top holiday concerts, ‘Nutcracker’ shows and parades

Get out your calendar, set aside the time and get tickets to see the top holiday shows and parties coming this season. Here are our editor’s picks for the holidays:CONCERTS98 Degrees The turn-of-the-millennium boy band brings their new holiday tour p...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Black Friday deals at Legoland, SeaWorld, Disney and more

Black Friday deals at Legoland, SeaWorld, Disney and more

Black Friday isn’t just for stores. Many theme parks and attractions in Florida are also offering up deals that could make a nice gift or family splurge. The smaller the park, the bigger the deal, so Legoland, Gatorland and SeaWorld are toutin...
Updated: 3 hours ago