BROOKLYN – A Brooklyn tradition more than two decades old honoring the timeless values of Greek civilization, the 193rd anniversary of Greek independence, and the achievements and contributions of Greek-Americans continued on March 26 at the gilded courtroom of Borough Hall in downtown Brooklyn.
Greek-Americans who have distinguished themselves in service to their communities were honored by Eric Adams, the new Borough President of Brooklyn.
The ebullient MC, Fr. Eugene Pappas, pastor of Three Hierarchs, assisted by Zoe Koutsopakis, welcomed the guests that packed the venerable hall.
Troop 531, “The Golden Greeks” of Three Hierarchs presented the colors and the dance troupes, which wer coordinated by Michelle Weller represented The Greek School of Plato, The Hellenic Classical Charter School, the A. Fantis parochial school and the Dimitrios and Georgia Kaloides parochial school.
For the invocation and the chanting of the hymn Ti Ipermaho, Fr. Pappas was joined by Fr. Damaskinos Ganas of Kimisis, Fr. John Romas of St. Nicholas at Ground Zero, who also represented Sts. Constantine and Helen, and Fr. Fr. Gerasimos Makris of Holy Cross.
Adams, who declared he will march in the Greek Parade, was visibly happy to welcome everyone to “the people’s house in Brooklyn.” He said tha the has visited Greece Mykonos – and looks forward to returning . “Tony Bennet left his heart in San Francisco. I left in in Mykonos,’ and its “clear blue water
Adams said he admires Greek-Americans for the way thy adore both Greece and America, their adopted country and declared that the immigrant communities made Brooklyn – which he called the Center of the Universe- a better place. He noted that 47 percent of Brooklynites speak a language other than English at home
The honorees included, who were selected by their local communities included: Stellena Argyriou, Antonia Bregianos, Tony Grigos, Nick Karkas, , Dimitrios Mallas, Joanna Vassilas, John Vorvolakos, Steve Vourderis, Dennis Voiuderis, and Peter Yiatrakis. Jimmy Kokotas was selected by the Borough President. Kokotas, a restaurateur, was cited for “opening his doors to help hundreds if not thousands” in the aftermath of hurricanae Sandy.