It is a busy weekend of festivals this weekend in Fort Meyers. One such festival is the 47th annual Greek Fest at the Annuciation Greek Orthodox Church. While the festival is biggest fundraiser of the year for the church, it is much more than that.
Organizers say it is about keeping their Greek heritage alive and sharing it with the community. Jon Ruppe, who helps lead the planning for the festival, says sometimes traditions and cultures gets lost with future generations, Greeks focus on passing them onto the future generations. He added that the bonus is then sharing that culture with the community around them.
“We like to share that with the people,” said Ruppe “You don’t see this as much as you used to. We like to share that with the outside people that come in. I think that they enjoy seeing the flaming cheese, the saganaki, the loukoumades, the honey puffs. Just seeing what we do as Greeks outside of the festival. We do this year round. The festival just magnifies what we do in our daily lives.”
Festivalgoers will not only be able to enjoy authentic Greek food, but also the church’s children dancing cultural dances that represent all the regions of Greece. These children study these dances and their meanings for months before they are performed. The festival opens at 11am Saturday until 11pm and 11am Sunday until 7pm.