Cherry Hill, NJ – One hundred years ago the Island of Crete united with the Greek state. This past Saturday evening, Knossos, Cretans of the Delaware Valley, celebrated this milestone and united as a community at their annual dance.
Cretans from across North America, attended the event, that featured traditional folk music and dancing. The Talos Cretan dance Troupe performed original Cretan folk dancing at St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church. Sixteen members, ranging from ages 7 to 18 performed for nearly an hour, under the direction of Director Regina Petinos.
Famed Lyra player Nikos Zoidakis and his orchestra, came all the way from Crete. Zoidakis energized the crowd with his storytelling as he strummed his Lyra. As the crowds formed, young Cretan men displayed their acrobatic skills, throwing each other into the air.
Passionate about their Cretan roots, many of the men came dressed in traditional folk attire. The Cretan head scarf, known as a Sarikia was seen on both performers and guests. Sarikia are traditional headgear for men on the island of Crete that are worn today at ceremonies and events that honor Cretan culture.
The 100 year celebration will continue next month in NYC. The Pancretan Association of America and The United Cultural Committee of NY & NJ Cretan Chapters will host a series of lectures, and an Awards Gala Celebration, on December 6th 2013.