Monday, March 28, 2011

109th Greek Independance Day Parage Marches Down Fifth Avenue: "Zito Hellas"

The American-Hellenic community along with much appreciated philhellenes celebrated the 109th year of Greek Independence from the Ottoman Empire yesterday. I posted a few photos from their annual parade down Fifth Avenue. I also posted two videos relevant to Greece and its culture.

Once again Mr. John Catsimatidis was the Parade Chairman Emeritus. For those that have not heard the name before, he is a Greek-American business mogul who from humble roots in Washington Heights and the Bronx, became one of Americas Billionaires. His father was a waiter. He is Captain of American industry. Many from the Bronx community know him from his youth when he attended the Greek American Institute, in the Pelham Bay section of the Bronx. Besides his success as a businessman, Mr. Catsimatidis is an avid philanthropist dedicated to American and Greek-American causes. He is particularly dedicated to issues relevant to the Patriarchate in Constantinople.

Another Greek-American who deserves the spotlight is Philip Christopher. Mr. Christopher is a leader in the Greek-Cyprian community who has fought tirelessly for the rights of the Cyprian people against the illegal occupation of Northern Cyprus by the Turkish government. Mr. Philip Christopher’s official title was Parade Chairman. The entire host of dignitaries is too long to mention individually. Please do enjoy the photos and videos attached.

Greek Evzones

King Leonidas and his 300 Spartans

Fordham University Students

Bronx High School of Science Students

Grand Marshal representing the Hellenic Caucus and official Queen of the Hellenic Community; U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney.

NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg

NY Senator Chuck Schumer

NYS Assemblyman Mike Gianaris

For those interested in seeing the traditional dance from the Central Region of Greece, please do see this video of men dancing "Tsamiko". The dancer is excellent.

The following video shows my ancestral village of Perista. The village is located in the Central Region of Greece also known as Sterea Hellas, Roumeli or the Free Mountains of Greece. Many call it the Free Mountains due to its historic significance as a rebel strong hold during various periods of Greek occupation. The mountainous terrain always played a significant role in my ancestors preserving their independence and traditions. The song in Greek on the video is about an elder man using the metaphor of a deep rooted tree, which represents the deep rooted family he established.

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