Local
8:00 am
Mon June 2, 2014

Greek Festival benefits from sunny weekend

Credit Mike Desmond/wbfo news

Under a perfect summer sky, the annual Greek Festival enjoyed large crowds throughout the weekend in Buffalo.

Even Festival Chair Athena Tsembelis admits there has been more than one Greek Festival hit with rain.

Not this year, with more visitors slathering on the sun screen than popping umbrellas. Unusually among area festivals, this is a church festival with profits going to the church and the local Greek community turns out to help because it's their congregation which benefits.

That's why there were church tours and religion lectures, along with Greek music and dancing and a delegation of dancers from Greece here for the weekend.
  
"We all sat down last night and said we couldn't ever remember such a beautiful weekend that we had this year," Tsembelis said.

"We were blessed with unbelievable weather. We had people come out in droves. Yesterday, we were here until two o"clock in the morning getting everything ready for today. We just exceeded our expectations yesterday and really today, too. We just cannot remember of a year of not having to pop the pull tent for rain."

Tsembelis says the event brings in newer Greek families, some of whom have married out of the Greek Orthodox religion but who bring their kids for the language classes and for the dancing classes and who volunteer for the festival.