SOUTHAMPTON – Greek-American businessman, radio show host, and 2013 NYC Mayoral Candidate John Catsimatidis celebrated his 67th birthday in style – the style of Greece, that is.
Family and friends gathered at Nammos restaurant in Southampton, NY on September 6 to with the honoree chronia polla – many years, and the celebration was replete with the sounds of bouzouki, good food, and the traditional Greek custom of breaking plates.
The guest list included media personalities such Rita Cosby and Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa, and Rikki Klieman, along with her husband and New York City Police Commissioner, Bill Bratton.
Catsimatidis’ wife, Margo, was ever-energetic in making sure that all the guests had a good time. It was her idea to add the special touch of plate-breaking to the festivities.
“WHO’S WHO” GUESTLIST
Other notable guests who filled Nammos, which was adorned with Greek and American flags, included Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), New York State Republican Party Chairman Edward Cox, Congressmen Vito Fossella and Lee Zeldin, acting Nassau County County District Attorney Madeline Singas, and from the Dormition of the Virgin Mary Church in Southampton, Fr. Alexander Karloutsos and his wife, Xanthi, and their grandchildren, and Fr. Constantine Lazarakis, and HANAC leader Evangeline Douris, who is Margo’s godmother.
Mylos Entertainment fueled the kefi with vocalist Olympia, bouzouki player Agapitos and DJ Savvas Mylonas.
The birthday boy began the breaking of the plates and soon enough, many others joined in. The waiters barely swept away the broken plates until new ones crashed to the floor, thrown by convivial guests, to take their place.
Fr. Karloutsos gave the pre-dinner prayer and used the opportunity to deliver some warm words about his good friend, the guest of honor. Catsimatidis’ children, Andrea and John, Jr., also spoke lovingly about their father.
John, Jr. emphasized: “I can say a thousand things about my father, but I have one that tched in my memory from my childhood. Everyone knows how busy my father is. But every Saturday morning he took me my basketball game. As you may know, I am a player that only a father can love, he said. But my father was there for me every Saturday. I want to say a big thank you, and that I love him and also that he is the best teacher I had in my life.
Andrea described her dad as a person who loves his children dearly, is a stable rock on which to lean, and a good mentor and role model.
Attendee Arthur Rosenfield told TNH that “John Catsimatidis is one of the most remarkable people on the planet. He loves people, he is a visionary. He has become extremely successful and shares a lot of this success with people who are part of the communities that he is involved with. He is generous. He and his wife, Margo, are special people. God put him on this planet to celebrate many birthdays and to do good things for everybody.”
Margo told TNH: “God has blessed me and my family. I am so grateful, so thankful and I pray every day that God keeps us together and that we are safe and that we can enjoy these times and that we can bring smiles to other people. There is a God watching over us. I am grateful for every day of my life for the past 27 years with John.”
The guest of honor himself, prior to partaking in Greek dancing, told TNH: “This weekend, Labor Day weekend, we had some laughs, good food, good music – we had a lot of fun, Greek style.
He received a round of applause as he blew out all of his birthday candles in one breath.