Greek Festival 2016 in Florida

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Saint Augustine, Florida

Greek Festival 2016 in Florida Saint Augustine Reviews

Cho Cho
104 reviews
Greek Festival 2016 in Florida Dec 20, 2016
In 1998 I was in Athens, Greece briefly on my way to Paris. Although my visit was rather short I was very impressed with the country and its people. I promised myself that I would return to Greece one day but up to now I haven't made it back yet. So, earlier this month when I heard about this festival I made it a point to go there to experience some Greek culture and traditions.

It was held in Saint Augustine which is reputed to be the oldest town in the United States. Apparently, this town has a sizable community of Greek-Americans. Another city with a large number of immigrants from Greece is Tarpon Springs which is also in Florida.

Back to the festival, I found out later that this was the 19th Annual Greek Festival. My goodness, I've been living in Florida for five years and I didn't know about it until recently! Anyway, another reason I went there was I love Greek cuisine and have had it a number of times in restaurants here in the US and other countries. Items such as olive oil, honey, goat milk/cheese, nuts, fruit, vegetables, lamb and fish continue to be the mainstays of this dynamic food culture. It is said that food and cooking has always been of importance and significance to Greek society.

There were a lot of stalls selling authentic Greek delicacies and we had to line up for about 15-20 minutes to place our order. There were also other stalls from local merchants displaying their wares and services, plus a children's playground area. While waiting for the cultural dance performance we took our seats inside the main tent and had lunch there. We sat through two shows, one by a children's ensemble and another performed by an adult troupe. Both groups wore Greek costumes and they were quite entertaining. Live music was provided by the Hellenic Band and the songs were actually sung in the Greek language. After each performance the MC encouraged the audience to say "Opa!" which is an exclamation of joy, like 'Hooray' or 'Bravo.'

We were told later that from the time of the first festival in 1998, it has grown to be a key event in the Saint Augustine area, and we could see that in the large crowd of visitors in attendance at this epic Greek food and culture extravaganza. By the way, we bought our tickets again through GROUPON which we really like as this website offers discounted rates for many events and even restaurants. The ticket prices for the festival included the admission fee, plus two drinks. According to the announcement, this festival held every year, is a major fund raiser for the local Greek Orthodox church. Well, we certainly enjoyed ourselves at this event and hope to be back there again next year!
Entrance to the festival grounds
Menu placard
Festival grounds
Tents offering various goodies
8 / 8 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
odiseya says:
I planing to do that for sure.
Posted on: Mar 04, 2017
Cho says:
@odiseya: Yes, I regret too that I haven't been back to Greece since my first trip there in 1998. Hopefully, both of us can go there again sometime in the future.
Posted on: Mar 04, 2017
odiseya says:
I went to Greece for the first time (and it is sadly still my only visit) in 1998 too. I love Greece, its culture and language. I love to attend any public celebration or festival. I am especially interesting to find out more about local national minorities and its clubs and cultural events.
Posted on: Mar 04, 2017
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