(Florence, South Carolina, United States) – The Florence, South Carolina Greek Festival, which is celebrating its 34th year, is taking place this weekend. It starts on Thursday, May 12th at 11 AM and ends on Sunday, May 15th at 7 PM. The festivals goes from 11 AM to 8 PM on Thursday, 11 AM to 9 PM on Friday and Saturday, and from 12 PM to 4 PM on Sunday. The festival itself will give visitors an overview of the Greek culture and feature things like Greek food and pastries, Greek music, dancing, and even church tours. The festival will take place on the grounds of the Transfiguration of Our Savior Greek Orthodox Church on South Cashua Drive in Florence, South Carolina. Other activities include games and activities for children, shopping with some of the vendors, Greek music, helicopter rides, and even a car show put on by the Eastern South Carolina Mustang Club.
For many people, however, the highlight is definitely the food. The pastries, in particular, are a popular choice. Father Athanasios C. Haros explains that the pastries are so popular, it is best to rush to the dessert table as soon as you arrive at the festival. He explains that they are tasty and that they tend to sell out extremely fast. As popular as the food is, however, that isn’t the only reason why the festival is in place. In Greece, festivals are a popular way to bring people together. It also gives people a chance to see what the parish community is all about. This festival is also unique because it is the only springtime Greek festival that is taking place in that part of South Carolina.
Preparation for the festival begins several weeks beforehand, when volunteers start prepping the food. Menu items include souvlaki, moussaka, gyros, Greek salads, dolmades, and spanakopita. Pastries include baklava, koulourakia, melomakarona, kourambedies, and karadopita. In addition to food, guests will enjoy a variety of beverages, including Greek wine, bottled Greek beer, and even beer on tap. In the Greek culture, food is used not only as a way to nourish, but also to bring people together. The festival gives people in the Florence, South Carolina area a chance to experience the Greek culture while also enjoying each other’s company.