It’s the return of traditions, it’s the return to normal, it’s the return of the Panegyri Greek Festival at the Assumption Greek Orthodox Church.

All of the Greek food favorites made a return as well, such as gyros and lamb dinners. There were even live bands playing Greek tunes.

“Wonderful food and just so much going on and it’s really a nice festival,” said Bill Buck, Jamestown, NY, resident.

“I love the Greek fest, I love the music, I love the food, I love the atmosphere. I missed it for basically the past three years,” said Wayne Dunton, Erie resident.

Last year and the year before, the event was drive-thru and takeout only. They are trying to make things similar to 2019 with the return of eating and live music.

“It’s as close as normal as we could get. Hopefully next year will be even more close to normal, but yeah as close as we can,” said Mike Geanous, Panegyri Greek Festival Co-Chairman.

We wanted to know why is it important to have festivals like this.

“It adds to the Erie County culture, just like the other festivals in Erie. I think it adds some variety to the Erie County, it includes a lot of different people. All the festivals do that and I think it’s important for the community to have events like this,” Geanous said.

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The funds raised go towards keeping the church open. The festival accounts for about 80% fundraising for the year.

The two-day event kicked off Friday, July 8 at 11 a.m. and runs through Saturday, July 9.