50th annual Palatine Greek Fest has special plans to celebrate culture, community

Visitors to Palatine’s Greek Fest will find much that’s familiar at the annual three-day event opening Friday at Saint Nectarios Greek Orthodox Church. But there will be added touches this year, too, as the festival of food and culture celebrates its 50th anniversary.

Father Chris Mihalopoulos said the event’s goal this year was not just to bring people together, but also to give more back to the community. In particular, he said a portion of proceeds will be donated to the Palatine Food Pantry, the International Orthodox Christian Chairies and the orthodox Christian Mission Center.

“All of those are services that help those in need, and we want to enhance their services to all the people of God,” he said.

Saint Nectarios’ Greek Fest welcomes thousands of people to the church grounds at 133 South Roselle Road every year. Offering indoor and outside seating, the event features music, dancing, food, games, fellowship and activities.

Musical entertainment each night expands from traditional Greek songs to American music, to even having a DJ who plays modern music to make sure all feel welcome, regardless of their ethnicity or where they come from, Father Mihalopoulos said.

“The best aspect of Greek Fest is the fellowship that everyone has, the camaraderie. The meeting of old and making new friends. The food is truly some of the best food in the Northwest Suburbs, and the music is just great. It’s the whole ambience, it’s how everyone participates in it, and seeing everyone enjoy this fest,” Father Chris Mihalopoulos said.

Above all, church members consider the festival a way to celebrate another year of embracing their beliefs and culture, he said.

Father Mihalopoulos said he is extremely grateful for his past five years serving as a priest at Saint Nectarios Church, and he is excited to see what is in store for the upcoming years.

“We obviously welcome the greater community of the Northwest suburbs to come and enjoy our campus and our food and our people,” he said. “It is a showcase of our Greek ethnic culture, but for other cultures in our community as well. The friendliness and openness our community has for everyone to come to worship with us under any capacity.”

For more information, see the event’s web site,

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