The annual Charleston Greek Festival celebrated Greek culture this weekend with food, dancing, and games at the Greek Orthodox Church on Race Street. If you’re like me, your only notions of Greek culture stem from watching My Big Fat Greek Wedding and Troy, so it was nice to expand my horizons.
Most guests arrived from Joe Riley Stadium via the provided shuttle and then took to the shady churchyard, where fragrant food and merchandise vendors lined the perimeter. The center dining tent was filled with hungry attendees chowing down on Greek specialties like spanakopita, domaldes, mousaka, baklava, and lamb and chicken gyros. My favorite part of this culinary adventure was the Greek donuts, crispier than their American counterparts yet juicier from being soaked in honey. I stuffed my face as I watched traditional folk dancers moving to the music performed by A Night in Athens, an all-Greek band.
Music was a huge part of the festival, creating a light and airy atmosphere as visitors walked around the grounds. Ladies from Charleston Henna Body Art inked artsy designs on willing women, while face painters were available down the row for the youngsters. Greeks and non-Greeks alike embraced the old world vibe, as evidenced by cries of “Opa!” resonating across the grounds all weekend.