Egg Harbor Twp, NJ – The fun at this Greek Festival really begins weeks before the launch date. It all starts with loyal parishioners who seemingly become full-time employees of the church working round the clock to prepare the traditional foods of Greece.
Their tasty Greek sweets we’ve all come to know and love, like – Baklava, Galaktoboureko, Kataifi and more caught our attention this weekend. Sweet-eloquent words that flow off the tongue and taste just as good as they sound.
When you circle the campus of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, the two sweets stand anchor the entrance. Both are the cornerstone of Greek festivals, and yes, we tried them. One was labeled a Greek Sweet stand, the other the Loukoumades.
Loukoumades are honey balls – fried on the spot and sprinkled with cinnamon and chopped nuts if you like. The other booth hosted a variety of sweets we mentioned above. Both filled the courtyard square of the festival with a sweet aroma that no one can resist. Those two stands were enough to keep us at this annual affair. But there’s a lot more.
The traditional music and dancing were featured from Epirus Greece this year in the plaza. Parishioners dressed as folk dancers from the church performed a series of high kicking steps alongside their ladies who spun in circles for the audience to admire. When the rain hit, the performance on Sunday was moved inside the big tent briefly, before being returned to the courtyard.
The four-day festivities also featured a church tour, games and rides for the kids and plenty of traditional platters, like Moussaka and Pastitsio cut so thick and tall; a serving would certainly feed two. What also sets this South Jersey Greek Festival apart from others, is the fireworks that take place to kick off and end the annual event. Folks come from miles around the area for a treat; that’s fun for all the family. From the aromas of fresh Greek food to the dancing and friendly spirit of this parish, it’s no wonder this festival is so well loved.