Arkansas’ Largest Ethnic Festival Tempts Taste Buds To Support Local Charities May 17th & 18th

This year’s International Greek Food Festival will continue the tradition of serving food, friends and the community by introducing a new menu option, Indian food, and adding new benefiting nonprofits, Arkansas Children’s Hospital and Harmony Health Clinic

Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church will host this year’s festival Friday and Saturday, May 17 and May 18, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, May 19, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The festival features a scrumptious medley of Greek and Mediterranean menu favorites, including baklava, gyros, calamari, pastitso, sourota and much more. The mouthwatering cuisine can be enjoyed at the festival, ordered online to go at www.greekfoodfest.com or picked up at the drive thru. This allows even those with demanding schedules an opportunity to taste the Mediterranean.

“We are delighted to be able to share our culture while supporting our community,” said festival co-chairman Ron Harb. “The International Greek Food Festival encourages local residents to support charities by enjoying a weekend of food and fun, supporting charities has never tasted so good!”

Proceeds from this year’s festival will benefit the Annunciation Scholarship Foundation and Annunciation Ministries, as well as seven other nonprofit organizations.

The International Greek Food Festival has donated more than $1 million to more than 20 charities that serve children, families and communities throughout central Arkansas. This year’s charities are:

• Arkansas Children’s Hospital, a private, nonprofit institution, is the only pediatric medical center in the state and is one of largest in the nation. With 370 staffed beds, Arkansas Children’s Hospital is a tertiary care, regional referral center treating children who come from every county in Arkansas and many nearby states. Arkansas Children’s Hospital has been committed to care, love and hope for every child for more than 100 years.
• Centers for Youth & Families is a private, not-for-profit agency providing the most comprehensive array of behavioral healthcare in Arkansas through specialized prevention, intervention and treatment services for children, adolescents and their families. The Centers serves 8,000 children and their family members annually.
• Community Connections is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of children in Arkansas. The program’s goal is to help families address various health, developmental and social needs by offering comprehensive programs and services not currently available in Arkansas.
• Easter Seals Arkansas is a nonprofit health and human services agency dedicated to helping children and adults with disabilities and special needs achieve greater independence. Easter Seals provides an array of programs and services across Arkansas.
• Harmony Health Clinic seeks to understand and serve the health and wellness needs of the medically uninsured and underserved who live in central Arkansas by providing access to quality medical care at no cost to patients in a private, community-based clinic setting.
• Love Truth Care Ministries is involved in Christian community development. Founded in 1986, its goal is to empower and equip inner-city leaders and workers to improve the community spiritually, physically, socially and economically.
• Youth Home is a private, nonprofit psychiatric treatment center for emotionally troubled adolescents and their families. As one of the oldest, largest and most experienced adolescent psychiatric treatment agencies in Arkansas, Youth Home serves more than 1,600 children and families each year.

Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, located at 1100 Napa Valley Drive, will be open for tours so that festivalgoers can learn about the rich history and tradition of the Orthodox Christian faith. Church tours will be guided by the Rev. Dr. Nicholas Verdaris. A schedule of church tours is available at GreekFoodFest.com.

The festival will again feature the popular Old World Market, offering specialty foods such as imported falafel mix, Greek olive oil, hummus, dolmathes (stuffed grape leaves), cheeses and the popular Pete’s Famous salad dressing that is handmade and bottled at the church. Frozen dinners to go, pastries, Russian collectibles, Stavriana jewelry and an array of imported gift items from around the Mediterranean will also be available in the market.

This year’s gold presenting sponsor is OneBanc. Dillard’s is this year’s silver sponsor. This year’s bronze sponsors include The Chacko Group at Morgan Stanley, Carpet One, Datamax and Pleasant Ridge Town Center. Additional sponsors include AIMCO, Arkansas Burger Company, CARTI, Central Bank, Coca-Cola, Cypress Properties, Anna and Dr. Steven Clift, Dr. Dailey Dentistry, Grapevine Wine & Spirits, Harrison Energy Partners, Indian Grocery, 1620 Savoy, Jones & Son Jewelry, Mangan Holcomb Partners, The Pantry Restaurant, Parker Cadillac, Party City, Pinnacle Signs, Simmons First National Bank, The Terrace Restaurant, Twin City Printing, Udezign Co., Brown, Rodgers & Co., VCC, Verizon Wireless, and Waste Management.

Admission, parking and trolley service to the International Greek Food Festival are free. For more information about this year’s festival and the benefiting charities, visit GreekFoodFest.com or connect with us on Facebook by searching for Little Rock Greekfest.