Well, I don’t know where I should post this article: in my events column? It certainly was an event. In my travel column? If you’re traveling north of the Golden Gate you certainly shouldn’t miss it. In my food column? Well, the food is spectacular!
Every late summer, St Seraphim Greek Orthodox Church in Santa Rosa, presents their Glendi International Festival, and what a festival it was.
It is certainly a grand event! Music? But of course! Music galore … and dancing of course … lots of dancing. You don’t know how to do Macedonian folk dances? Hey … no one cares … you're welcome … the more the merrier! Just get up, join the circle and have a grand time. Some people know the dances, some even teach them, but most people just jump up and join in the fun, and what great, joyous fun it is. If you love to dance then this is the event for you.
You don’t dance but just love the music, well then, sit, tap your toe and enjoy yourself with a beer or a glass of fine Sonoma county wine. All the wines served are from wonderful, small family owned Sonoma county wineries. Don’t drink alcohol? Then how about a cup of rich Greek coffee, ice coffee, mint tea or a frothy frappe?
And that takes us to the food! Food! Food! Food! Glendi is a foodie’s paradise … where do I begin? For all of you carnivores, there’s Gyro, the real thing, turning seductively on it’s skewer, dripping seductive juices, not those nasty little pre formed lumps of mystery meat. There’s succulent Macedonian roasted lamb and of course kebabs. Try Piroshki or Borscht at the Russian booth, the Eritrean booth offers seductive stews, both meat and vegetarian, or savory lentils, served on the traditional Injera, and you’ll find and pasta fans will be delighted by the Italian booth.
Still hungry? Then head to the Greek booth for spanakopits, Tiropita, Greek salad, Dolmas or Galaktoboureko, or head to the Balkan booth and try the Sarma, Balkan potato salad, Derbian Green Beans or Tarator.
Vegetarians, don’t miss the Middle Eastern booth offering Falafel, served on pita with tahini, the Fatoush or the Hummus. And hey! If you don’t know what some of the offerings are, then eat your way to a culinary education!
And your sweet tooth certainly won’t go begging! One whole building is dedicated to incredible baked goods. Baked goods to stagger the wildest imigination!
The Glendi festival will take your taste buds one step beyond!
So your thing is art. Be sure to take the tour of the church it’s self to view the magnificent icons and learn about Byzantien conography and frescos. There will also be presentations of Orthodox Church music and traditional church bell ringing. You are also to attend the Vespers Service with a full Choir.
The Glendi Festival will fill you up with more than superb food. You will leave replete with the fullness of the celebration of life. Don’t miss it next year. If you do miss it, in the words of today’s kids, “…Your Bad…”