As a native to Kansas City, I’m baffled at how often my city is overlooked as a “cowtown” or “flyover city.” If you aren’t familiar with these terms, they basically mean that a place is so boring, there’s nothing to see but cows. So you might as well fly right over them to get to a better place.
Now, granted, Kansas City might be on the smaller scale when it comes to cities. We’re not a huge place full of people in the way that New York City or L.A. are. We’re not even as big as Chicago. But that doesn’t mean we have nothing to offer.
So, in honor of the place I call home, I’ll be doing an ongoing series of posts dedicated to my beloved city of fountains and all we have to offer.
If there’s one thing you need to know about Kansas City, it’s this: We love good food. If you want a Kansas Citian to show up to something, tell them the food is good. We will show up in droves!
Earlier this month, I decided to check out the local Greek Festival. An ad for it popped up on my FB page and I thought, “Greek food? Yep. Sign me up!” I am pleased to say, I was not disappointed!
The annual Greek festival is put on by Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church. The festival offers live performances, shopping and food. You can even take a tour of the church.
So, how was it?
I went with my older sister and my mom. We always make a plan that everyone gets different foods, that way we can each try a few bites of everything! You can see from the picture above, that this plan works out really well! (This wasn’t all the food we had, but my plate couldn’t hold everything!)
I ordered the Lemon Chicken and a Greek salad. The chicken came with rice on the side. My mom ordered stuffed grape leaves, spanakopita, and a feta cheese-filled pastry. My sister ordered kebabs and a Greek salad.
As we made our way through the line, the volunteers were kind and helpful. Not only did they explain to us what the items had in them, but they also talked to us about everyday things. They made us feel truly welcome, as if we were old friends catching up.
As we each tried the different items, we all agreed that the stuffed grape leaves just weren’t for us. However, everything else that we had was to die for!
While we ate, we were entertained by live dance performances. The costumes were beautiful and the dances were fun to watch.
After we ate, we spent some time shopping. This was mostly jewelry, clothing, scarves and purses, but there were a few other items here and there. I ended up with a dress and my sister bought a sleeveless summer jacket.
Once we had our fill of music and shopping, we decided to grab a dessert to go. We each bought a few cookies to take home and then popped over to the line for our actual dessert.
Brace yourself. This isn’t for the faint of heart. I present to you, the BAKLAVA SUNDAE!
Baklava is one of my favorite Greek foods. It’s a dessert pastry with nuts and either syrup or honey. Now, that’s delicious on it’s own. But when you crush that up and put it in ice cream?
Pure, un-adulterated Heaven.
I can not rave enough about how much I love a good Baklava Sundae.
So, what are my overall thoughts? Recommendations?
The parking was a bit tight. They had parking in a grass field next to the church. Smaller cars had no issue, but if you have an SUV or truck, I would recommend parking elsewhere.
Most of the festival was outside under a giant tent. It was hot, but not unbearable. This comes with the territory of holding a festival in the summer or early fall in KC. The church was air conditioned and open, so if you get hot, you can pop inside for a bit and explore the church bookstore or take a tour. Since the church was open, there was easy access to public restrooms.
The performances were wonderful to watch and the performers did a great job. (Especially the little kids! They were so adorable!)
There wasn’t as much shopping as I would have liked, but I think most people go for the food anyways. I would have liked to see more hand-made or authentic items. Though, I did see some beautiful jewelry.
I can’t speak enough of how good the food was. Everything seemed reasonably priced and enjoyable.
Would I recommend paying a visit to the annual Greek festival if you are ever in KC in time to visit?
Absolutely! I will definitely be adding this to my yearly calendar of “can’t miss” events!
Are there any annual festivals like this where you live?