PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Opa! What would a Greek Fest be without music and dancing?
There will be plenty of both this weekend at St. George Greek Orthodox Church of the Berkshires’ annual Greek Fest. Athenian Entertainment will provide music, and dancers from the Greek Orthodox churches in Springfield and Longmeadow, Mass. will perform in native costumes at midday Saturday and Sunday.
Those attending the Greek fest even may find themselves being drawn into the action.
“Master of ceremonies Jim Panos always tries to lead the crowd in dancing,” said Nick Parsenios, chairman of the festival. “And, at any given time, someone from the crowd will jump in and lend a hand.”
But the highlight of the festival is the wide selection of homemade traditional Greek foods — savory and sweet — moussaka, pastichio, souvlaki, gyros, fresh Greek salad, sweet loukoumades (fried bread dough drizzled with honey) and Greek pastries, including the ever-popular baklava.
All of the food for the festival is made by St. George congregants.
“We gather at the church, which has a large commercial kitchen, or at local restaurants owned by parishioners,” Parsnios said. “Somehow every year it gets done; everyone works together. It’s one of the few Greek festivals where all the food is made by the parishioners.”
He added the number of parishioners varies at each cooking or baking session.
A Greek Cafe will offer traditional Greek coffee, which is made with finely ground coffee beans and boiled in a special pot called a briki. During the process, the grounds fall to the bottom of the pot.
“It has a lot of flavor and a lot of caffeine,” Pasenios said. “It’s served in small portions, but it has a lot of kick.” The coffee is traditionally served black, but sugar can be added.
The cafe also will offer Greek coffee frappes, a Greek-style frothy milkshake and a variety of pastries to complement the coffee drinks, such as vegan moustokouloura.
The Agora (a boutique) will offer shoppers a…