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General News

Philadelphia in Blue and White for Greek Independence Parade

PHILADELPHIA – The center of Philadelphia was painted blue and white with Greeks of all ages present on March 20 for the parade honoring the 201st anniversary of Greek Independence, two years after the last pre-pandemic parade.

Despite the fact that the weather was not ideal, the event drew a good crowd as Hellenism in the historic city participated in the groups of associations and parishes that descended on Benjamin Franklin Parkway, sending a strong message of unity and pride from the community.

The highlight was the appearance of the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece, marching once again in the parade and receiving thunderous applause from the audience, and inspiring an emotional response from many community members.

Also present at the parade was His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America, his first Greek Independence parade since he began his tenure, as his arrival coincided with the outbreak of the pandemic and the cancellation of social events, a few months later.

The Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece, marching in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: TNH/ Christodoulos Athanasatos

The same goes for Ambassador of Greece to the United States Alexandra Papadopoulou, who applauded throughout the parade and was visibly moved, especially with the presence of the younger generation.

The parade was also attended by, among others, Consul General of Greece in New York Dr. Konstantinos Koutras, Consul of Greece Dimitris Papageorgiou, AHEPA Supreme President Jimmy Kokotas, his immediate predecessor George Horiates who was this year’s recipient of the Eleftheria Award, and the entire leadership of the Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley along with President Dimitris Rozanitis and past president Efstathios Karadonis.

Grand Marshal for the parade was Honorary Consul General of Panama in Philadelphia Georgia Athanasopoulos.

The parade concluded with traditional Pontian dances.

The youth of St. Luke’s Greek Orthodox Church in Broomall, PA, ready to march in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: Steve Lambrou
Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church of Wilmington, DE, was among the communities participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: Steve Lambrou
Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church was among the many communities with floats in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: Steve Lambrou
The youngsters stole the show at the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: Steve Lambrou
The National Hellenic Student Association of North America marching in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: Steve Lambrou
The Pontian Society of Philadelphia Akritai at the Philadelphia Greek Independence Parade on March 20. Photo: Steve Lambrou

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