Jeffersonville, PA – It was a perfect day for the St. Sophia Greek Festival. Inside the church hall, parishioners hustled to keep the lines moving through dinner while under the outdoor tent the GOYA dance group performed traditional Greek folk dances. In front of the Byzantine church, guests enjoyed dinner against a sunsetting backdrop that made you feel like you were in Santorini Greece.
Souvlaki and Gyro sandwiches were being ordered faster than they could make them. “We come every year. The food, the hospitality, and the atmosphere are perfect”, one guest said as they stood eagerly waiting to place an order. The aromas kept them in line while the dance troupes dazzled them in the middle of the tent.
Inside the hall, vendors offered Greek products on one side of the room. On the other, guests strolled through the cafeteria style dining hall forming a line that nearly circled. Mousaka, Pastitsio, chicken platters and more were all being served. But the big hit each year continues to be the lamb shank platter. Served with rice and string beans covered in a tomato sauce, guests plates were seen eaten clean and bone dry on those orders. Over and over again, we heard people raving about them.
And when you were done dinner, you could visit the pastry section that carried, galaktoboureko, baklava, or melomakarona. The choices were abundant and freshly made on the premises. It was the perfect Greek desert. But what made it extra special was when it came to the outdoor sweets, the loukoumades. Senior parishioners would fry the tasty golden colored balls while you wait. Drenched in honey and crushed nuts, they were piled so high, there was no way to eat them all. If you didn’t have a friend to share, you were taking a doggy bag home with you.
And let’s not forget the traditional Greek coffee to top off the evening. Brewed over a small flame the simple coffee and sugar concoction gave you that last blast that made you stand up and say OPA!
The St. Sophia Greek Festival continues today, Saturday and Sunday (June 4-5). Plenty of free parking, games, and rides for the kids, and an atmosphere that makes you feel like you’re in Greece. Don’t miss out on this event.
For more information check out the Saint Sophia’s website.