Celebrating Vancouver’s 40th Greek Food Festival (photos, video)

The Vancouver Greek Food Festival is set to take off once again on Friday, April 20, and continue up until Monday, April 23, at the Hellenic Community Centre of Vancouver, British Columbia, located at 4500 Arbutus Street.

Photo credit: Vangelis Catevatis

This year marks the 40th year that the Vancouver Greek Food Festival will be taking place since the first festival was launched in 1977.

1977 Vancouver Greek Food Festival: Vangelis Catevatis dressed as the Greek God Dionysos

The festival, which is hosted by the Hellenic Community of Vancouver, attracts thousands of people from all over the Vancouver lower mainland and other parts of the province of British Columbia, as well as from the nearby state of Washington, USA, who come to enjoy the music, the entertainment, the history — and above all, the food.

Photo credit: Vangelis Catevatis

On top of the many mouth watering main course meals, the Philoptochos Ladies Society will be managing the Bakery that will be located downstairs, where one can purchase various home made style Greek sweets such as baklava, loukoumades, galaktompouriko, bougatsa, and many other lip-smacking Greek desserts. Many other traditional Greek foods such as Greek cheese pies, spanakopita, koulourakia, etc., are also available to either take home or eat in.

Photo credit: Vangelis Catevatis

In addition to the Bakery, there will be a Heritage Room up the stairs and along the balcony, which will be featuring, photos and other memorabilia from the Vancouver Greek associations, AHEPA and the community.

Photo credit: Vangelis Catevatis; Volunteers: Mary Babalos, Marie Kyreakos, Leo Balatsas

The idea for the food festival originated in 1976 when a local Greek Vancouver man had mentioned to his friend that he had just come back from San Francisco and that while he was there, he had attended a Greek food event.  His friend immediately responded, “well then why don’t we do something like that here in Vancouver?”  The seed was planted.

The following year; 1977, that idea became a reality and after a considerable amount of work; which included intense planning, organising, city licensing and endless hours of volunteer work from many, many members of the Hellenic Community of Vancouver, the first Greek Food Festival of Vancouver was introduced to the city.

The festival proved to be such a success and popular among people in the city, that in 2018, it is being held for the 40th year.

Photo credit: Vangelis Catevatis

This year; 2018, on Saturday, April 21 in addition to the festival, the community will also be holding a ‘Greek Night’, which will commence at 10pm and which will be featuring Vancouver’s very own DJ Dimitri.  Friends and family are invited to come enjoy a night filled with Greek music and dancing so as to get a real feel of the Greek party experience!