OPA! Get Dayton Greek Festival eats and treats to go this weekend

The Dayton Greek Festival will host a carryout version of its popular event Friday through Sunday, Sept. 11-13

One of the area’s most beloved cultural events is set to host a drive-thru version of its fall event.

This year, due to restrictions created by the coronavirus pandemic, the Dayton Greek Festival will be hosting a carryout version of its popular event, set to take place on Friday, Sept. 11 from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11, noon to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12 and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13 at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Dayton. The festival’s Greek Fest Express requires customers to preorder, prepay and then pick up during a designated time.

“We want to do this for the people in the community and even for our parishioners because that’s what Greeks do — they share their food, their culture, their heritage,” said Deb Pulos, the Dayton Greek Festival’s public relations coordinator. “That’s what we want to do. So we’re gonna give it a shot.”

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Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Greek Fest Express

“We’ve done takeout the last three years and every year we’ve gotten better with it,” Pulos said. “Our response has been really favorable. Our team of takeout experts include a couple of people who have and still own local restaurants, so we feel comfortable about branching out to an entirely drive-through festival.”

Orders must be placed and paid for online in advance through the Dayton Greek Festival’s website.

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The following menu items will be available at the Dayton Greek Festival’s drive-thru:

  • Gyros
  • Chicken souvlaki sandwich
  • Small and large Greek salads
  • Large Greek salad with marinated chicken
  • Frozen pastitsio (half pan) -- SOLD OUT
  • Large and small Greek pizzas
  • Personal pan cheese pizza
  • Cheese pies (trigona)
  • Spinach pies (spanakopita)
  • Baklava
  • Chocolate baklava
  • Koulouria
  • Kourambiethes
  • Pecan blossoms
  • Chocolate almond rolls
  • Pastry variety box
  • Tsoureki (sweet bread)
  • Greek salad dressing

Due to the social distancing precautions created by the coronavirus pandemic, meal preparations for the drive-through event were a bit more difficult.

“Everybody has to be wearing gloves, masks and hairnets. When Greeks cook, somebody is always in the kitchen cooking lunch for everybody that’s cooking — but this year, we’re not doing that. It’s very different. We are breaking it down in shifts so that we don’t overlap and create a situation in which too many people are there at one time, ” Pulos said.

Credit: Deb Pulos

Credit: Deb Pulos

Upon entering the church’s parking lot, customers will be directed through the drive-through line with the help of volunteers and signage to pick up their orders. To ensure that customers remain safe during the drive-through event, organizers are requiring everyone to remain in their cars.

Please follow the festival’s Facebook page for updates throughout the weekend.

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Virtual entertainment

Though food will be the main draw at this year’s Greek Festival, organizers are still attempting to find innovative ways to bring other aspects of the festival to its loyal fans. According to Pulos, plans are in the works to offer a virtual version of the festival’s live entertainment.

“Our dancers have been doing virtual performances,” said Pulos. “They’re videotaping individual dancers and putting a montage together. So, we’re going to have several things that you’re going to be given a card or something for when you arrive that will have a QR code. You can scan it with your phone while you’re waiting in line, in your car or even when you get home. It’ll have a little bit of information about the food, church and dancing. That’s our home. We’re just trying to work on a way to incorporate some of the normal festival events that we’d like to share with people so that we can do it virtually with them.”

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What: The Dayton Greek Festival drive-thru event

Where: Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, 500 Belmonte Park N., Dayton

When: Sept. 11-13. All orders must be placed and paid for online for a scheduled pickup.

More info: www.daytongreekfestival.com | facebook.com/daytongreekfestival

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