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Wednesday, May 6, 2009

It's all Greek to me, but it fit the budget!




Ah, the joy of finding an inexpensive pastime on a partly sunny yet not scorching day in Arizona! I wanted to give you a taste of the types of entertainment that can be found for little or no money...so today I am giving you a review of the Greek Festival at Tempe Town Lake. My sister cajoled me into going (ok...it didn't take a lot of arm-twisting...I have cabin-fever with no job and a very strict budget!).

The festival opened Fri. May 1st, and we were correct in assuming that it wouldn't be crowded around noon on the opening day...that, in fact, is a gross understatement...there were people there but hardly anything close to a crowd. The actual entertainment wasn't scheduled to begin until 5:30 that evening; but there was a fairly steady stream of Greek music over the speaker system.

We were pleased to find that the $2/adult entry fee was not being collected in the early hours of the festival...apparently too much setting up going on and they hadn't gotten to that yet! Free always makes everything seem better!

The food selection was definitely Greek - lamb (legs and all!) roasting on a spit on the grill, pastries and breads, gyros and my favorite, spanakopita (Greek spinach pie). We sampled the lamb and the spanakopita as well as Greek beer and wine. To our dismay, the sponsor being Budweiser, most of the beverage selections were American, German or Australian (in the case of the wine)...oh well...

We wandered through the vendors' tents in search of amazing finds. There were some beautiful jewelry pieces and some lovely clothing, but also the touristy sort of "Kiss me, I'm Greek" t-shirts and souvenir types of gifts. And don't forget the ever-popular foam visors with "Greek" or "I love Greece" spelled out on them in foam stick-on letters! To each their own...!

Overall, though, the price was right and it was something different to do on a lazy day off (oops...that's right...all of my days are "days off"! - hoping to remedy that as you read this as I am off to interview!).

Any exciting events in your area?

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