As Greece prepares to observe 196 years of independence later this month, the Town of Hempstead today hosted its first ever Greek American Heritage Ceremony. Supervisor Anthony J. Santino welcomed the community to Town Hall for a celebration that featured traditional dances, a keynote speaker and the presentation of six Greek American Heritage Awards.
“Hempstead Town is near the epicenter of the New York Metropolitan area, which is home to the largest population of Americans with Greek ancestry,” Santino said. “While Greece celebrates its Independence Day on March 25th, we were proud to celebrate the achievements and contributions of Greek Americans in America’s largest township today on March 22nd at Town Hall.”
Entertainment was provided by St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church. Greek specialties and refreshments were donated by the Empress Diner of East Meadow and Donma’s Bakery of Deer Park. The keynote speech was presented by Father Nikiforos Fakinos of Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church of Merrick.
The 2017 Town of Hempstead Greek American Heritage Award winners included: Nick Boultadakis, owner of the Sand Castle in Franklin Square; Harry Demiris, Jr. Esq., attorney and distinguished past president of the East Meadow Kiwanis Club; Father Nikiforos Fakinos of Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church of Merrick; Despina Forakis, a math teacher at Roosevelt High School; Gus Potaris, owner of Pop’s Seafood Shack of Island Park and Chris Stefanakos, owner of Stefan’s Florist in Lawrence. Fr. Fakinos was also the keynote speaker of the evening’s program.
“In recognition of Greek Heritage Month in March and the upcoming Greek Independence day, it was fitting to host the cultural celebration tonight at Town Hall,” Santino said. “Congratulations to all of our Greek American Heritage Award winners and a special thank you for their contributions to our communities.”