Toledo community members caught a glimpse of Greece at this year’s 47th Annual Greek-American Festival.
The Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral hosted the event, which took place Sept. 8 – 10 and included Greek music, dancing and language. The festival also offered a large variety of Greek food for purchase.
Toledo community member Donna Croniser has been attending the festival for many years.
“It is a wonderful, multi-generational event that is educational, experiential and just plain fun,” Croniser said.
Dawn Anagos has been helping with this festival every year since it started and has been a Greek language instructor for the past 44 years. She is one of the individuals responsible for organizing this festival.
Anagos expressed her passion for Greek language and culture as she worked at a booth with her daughter, promoting the language courses taught at the cathedral. She was also involved in preparing the food for the festival and said the pastries were her favorite part.
“I helped out with those pastries beginning in early May,” Anagos said.
The food was a significant attraction for many attending the event including Cindy Krug, who drove from Monroe specifically for the festival.
“People come for the ethnicity of the food,” Krug said. “You won’t get this at a restaurant. It only comes once a year.”
Cindy said she had been waiting in anticipation for this festival since attending last year and that she was impressed with both the event and the community.
“I like the food, but I love the people,” Krug said. “It is wonderful to see multiple generations of Greek families greeting one another.”
Fourth-year theater major Rachel Hybarger also attended and found the food to be a significant part of the event, but the Greek dances also interested her.
“I arrived at the festival right before the kids’ dancing performance,” Hybarger said. “It was so great to watch all the children trying their best to perform their dance routine.”
Reem Barakat, a 2016 UT graduate, also attended the festival and expressed her appreciation of the culture and the event in its entirety.
“I think the festival highlighted an authentic Greek culture experience, the beautiful church and was a positive and cultural draw to the north end of Toledo,” she said.