This Friday and Saturday,Carmel’s Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church will play host to the 39th annual Indianapolis Greek Festival.
Dean Antonopoulos, the festival’s vice president, has been involved with the event for nearly 20 years.
“The first event was in 1974, and our purpose at that time was to share our Christian and Hellenic traditions as well as creating a fundraiser for the parish,” said Antonopoulos.
While food has always been a primary aspect of the festival, organizers this year are hoping to raise the level of cuisine available to include more than the standard festival food stands.
“This year we are introducing restaurant-style gyros carved directly from the spit and a dedicated sit-in dinner area that includes Greek lamb and chicken, along with a much-improved Greek wine selection that was given to us by a sommelier,” said Antonopoulos.
In addition to the cuisine, traditional Greek music and dance is another focus of the festival. Kosta and the Wave, an all Greek band, will perform traditional favorites both days of the festival. All of the Holy Trinity Hellenic Dance Troupes will be performing as well alongside the band. The troupes range in age from pre-elementary children just beginning to dance all the way to experienced adults.
“When we moved toCarmelin 2009, our first year had (an attendance of) more than 16,000. The last two years, we’ve had rain on one of our days of operation which diminished attendance considerably. However, we are a ‘rain or shine’ event so we can still cater to our faithful patrons,” said Antonopoulos.
The Indianapolis Greek Festival has partnered with Indy Crop Walk to offer free admission on Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. for each person donating at least three canned goods.
The Indianapolis Greek Festival will be held this Friday from 4-11 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 11 p.m. at the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church (3500 W. 106th St., Carmel).Tickets are $5 in advance, $7 at the door and available at select Northside Marsh Supermarket locations as well as the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church. Children 12 and under are free with an adult.