2024 Houston Greek Fest returns for 25th celebration after hiatus

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) —For five years, one of Houston’s most beloved celebrations went dark due to COVID-19.

Thursday, the Houston Greek Festival will make its triumphant return to west Houston, with three days’ worth of festivities planned through Saturday.

Organizer Damon Diamantaras said the festival established itself as one of the city’s biggest springtime events back in 1996.

“It’s just for us to show people a taste of what the Greek culture is all about,” Diamantaras said. “We try to do all those things that will make you feel like you’re in Greece, at least for a few hours.”

Saint Basil the Great Greek Orthodox Church will be transformed into a giant festival space, welcoming visitors to experience Greek foods and pastries, cultural dancing, children’s activities and shop for Greek merchandise.

Tickets are available online at HoustonGreekFest.com. You can also get free admission by bringing three canned goods per person to support Houstonians in need.

PHOTOS: A sneak peek at Houston Greek Fest

Previously, the festival beckoned more than 15,000 people, and then, the pandemic hit.

After canceling the 2020 festival due to rising COVID-19 infections, organizers spent the next several years weighing how – and when – to reemerge.

“The community really wanted us to bring it back, and we heard everyone loud and clear,” Diamantaras said.

Over the last five months, a team of leaders shouldered the responsibility of planning a festival that typically takes a year to produce. But, Diamantaras said seasoned visitors to Houston Greek Festival will likely find the celebration is picking up where it left off.

In addition to the carnival rides and all that delicious Greek food, the festival will also see the return of its popular dancing program – including the Zorba the Greek dance competition.

“There’s something for everyone,” Diamantaras said.

The festival is dedicated to sharing the rich heritage and traditions of Hellenic culture, with proceeds benefiting Target Hunger Food Bank and outreach ministries at Saint Basil the Great Greek Orthodox Church.

Saint Basil the Great Greek Orthodox Church is at 1100 Eldridge Parkway, in Houston.

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