Earlier today, the Federation of Hellenic American Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley sent an announcement, informing of the cancellation of the Greek Independence Day Celebrations in Philadelphia:
Dear members, sponsors, and friends
We started this year excited to celebrate the 199th year of Greek Independence, commemorating 2500th Anniversary of the Battle of Thermopylae. In addition to honoring our distinguished dignitaries at the Eleftheria Medal and Dignitaries Banquet on Saturday, March 21, 2020. During the past week, the recent COVID-19 (Coronavirus) has spread into our communities, raising concern for all of us and our families. This afternoon the City of Philadelphia has issued a legal ban on events of more than 1000 people and strongly suggested the postponement of events of 250 or more people. Earlier this week, we had been given communication that the Presidential Guard of Greece will not be participating in any celebrations and will not be able to attend the parade.
In conjunction with the City of Philadelphia’s legal ban, our Executive Board of the Federation of Hellenic American Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley and with the blessings of Metropolitan Evangelos, we regret to inform you that we must cancel the Greek Independence celebrations scheduled between March 21, 2020, and March 29, 2020.
March 17, 2020 – Parade Meeting Cancelled
March 21, 2020 – Eleftheria Medal and Dignitaries Banquet Postponed
March 26, 2020 – Lecture Postponed
March 27, 2020 – Indoor Flag Raising Ceremony and Program Cancelled
Outside Flag raising (we will ask City to raise the flag)
March 28, 2020 – Presidential Guard Educational Program Cancelled
March 29, 2020 – 199th Greek Independence Day Parade Cancelled
After Parade Reception and Dance Performances Cancelled
While we must temporarily adhere to the Federal, State, and local Government request and do our part in protecting all of us against the Coronavirus, we hope that the problem will be resolved, and this is a short term situation. We are looking forward to doing our best to present a Grand celebration of our 200th Anniversary of Greek Independence in 2021! We will communicate new dates and additional information once it becomes available. Thank you for your understanding and support.