Opa! Summer Greek Festivals in Chicago 2012

If you have been living in Chicago for a while, you have probably noticed that the city has a significant number of people of Greek descent living here. In fact,  Chicago currently has the third largest Greek population of any city in the world. No wonder there are so many Greek festivals going on during the summer. I would highly recommend going to any of these festivals if you want to experience a little bit of Greek culture without leaving Chicago.  Personally,  my favorite thing about these festivals is the opportunity to participate in the circle dances that spontaneously erupt during the live music shows. It is definitely a lot of fun!  Something to  keep in mind is that if you are planning on eating at these events, then you should arrive early because it gets quite crowded after 6 pm and some fests have run out of food in the past.  I have attended the following two festivals and have had a great time in both of them:

July 20-22 : Holy Taxiarhai and Saint Haralambos Greek Orthodox Church & Greek Festival

http://www.biggreekfoodfestofniles.org

August 25-26: Chicago’s 23rd annual Taste of Greece Festival

http://www.nationalhellenicmuseum.org/taste-greece-2012/

You may also find a more comprehensive list of Greek Orthodox Church Festivals happening in the metropolis of Chicago in the following link:

http://chicago.goarch.org/festivals-metropolis

Opa! Summer Greek Festivals in Chicago

Yasas Urbanites!

Did you know that Chicago currently has the third largest Greek population of any city in the world? Maybe that is the reason why there are so many Greek festivals going on during the Summer. My favorite thing about these festivals is the circle or communal dances in which perfect strangers (Greeks and non-Greeks) get together and dance to the music of a live Greek Folk band. I have done this many times and have always had a great time. I also love to see single dancers do the Zeibekiko, which consists of a man or a woman dancing in the middle of a circle  of  friends who are on their knees clapping to the rhythm of the music. Here is a video showing you some Zeibekiko moves danced to the music of my favorite Zeibekiko song:

If you would like to try this on your own, then go to one of the festivals going on in the city this Summer.   Something to  keep in mind is that if you are coming to these festivals to eat, try to get there early because it gets quite crowded after 6 pm and some fests have run out of food in the past. Here is a list of them:

June 17-19: Lincoln Park Greek Fest

http://www.lincolnparkgreekfest.com/

June-September: List of Greek Orthodox Church Festivals in the metropolis of Chicago

http://chicago.goarch.org/festivals-metropolis

August 27-28: Chicago Greek Town Taste of Greece

http://www.greektownchicago.org/index.php?option=com_eventlist&view=details&id=6:taste-of-greece-2011&Itemid=44