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America’s Pastime Hosts Celebration of Greek Heritage in Philly

No. 25

AHI’s 6thAnnual Greek Heritage Night hosted by Philadelphia Phillies a home run

— Torrential downpours did not put a damper on the 6thAnnual Greek Heritage Night hosted by the American Hellenic Institute (AHI) and held in cooperation with Major League Baseball's Philadelphia Phillies, May 29, 2019, at Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia, Pa. Approximately 600 tickets were sold for the event which featured the first place Philadelphia Phillies versus the St. Louis Cardinals. 

Highlights from Greek Heritage Night included: Mrs. Georgia Halakos, president, Federation of Hellenic-American Societies of Philadelphia and the Greater Delaware Valley, who threw out the ceremonial First Pitch and the Greek Choir of Odyssey Charter School, Wilmington, Del., who performed the National Anthem.  The popular Phillies mascot, The Phillie Phanatic, sported an Evzone costume and performed during the 5thinning. The Hellenic Heritage Dance Troupe of St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church, Cherry Hill, N.J., preformed pre-game Greek folk dances at the main concourse in center field.  A promotional video about Greece, made possible by the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO), was played on the ballpark's Jumbo-tron. Greek Heritage Night also featured a Greek cuisine stand.

“On behalf of AHI, I sincerely thank the Philadelphia Phillies, especially the unbelievable unwavering efforts of the Phillies’ Director of Publicity, John Brazer, and Director of Group Sales, Vanessea Mapson, without whose support the event could not have been a success,” President Nick Larigakis said. “I am also deeply grateful to the Greek American communities of the Tri-State Philadelphia area who came out in droves to support Greek Heritage Night and proudly displayed their Hellenic pride.  Finally, the event could not have been a success without the incredible backing of certain individuals and entities that helped to promote it and to sell tickets. We continue to receive positive feedback about the event, and we will continue to work to see it grow every year.”

      He added, “I especially commend the 20 children of Odyssey Charter School’s Greek choir who patiently waited 3 ½ hours before they could perform the National Anthem due to a severe weather delay.”

In Appreciation

            AHI is grateful to the many individuals and entities that helped to make this event a success. 

For assistance with ticket sales, marketing, and promotion from the Greek American community: Drs. Spiro and Emily Spireas and SigmaPharm Laboratories; Constantine Larigakis, Paul Kotrotsios, AHI Board Member Nicholas and Kathleen Chimicles and Chimicles, Schwartz, Kriner & Donaldson-Smith, LLP; AHI Board Member Demetrios and Georgia Halakos; Demos and John Vasiliou and Astra Foods; Law Office of George Horiates, Seasons Pizza, and Peter Doulis.

AHI also thanks the following co-sponsoring organizations:  Federation of Hellenic-American Societies of Philadelphia and the Greater Delaware Valley, Greek American Heritage Society of Philadelphia,Hellenic News of America, and CosmosPhilly.  Additional gratitude is extended to CosmosPhillyfor its media coverage of Greek Heritage Night.

 From The Philadelphia Phillies: John Brazer, director of Publicity;Vanessa Mapson, director, Group Sales; The Phillie Phanatic; and of course, The Philadelphia Phillies organization.