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By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times, published February 23, 2001
TARPON SPRINGS -- An annual Greek festival benefiting people in need will be held today through Sunday on the grounds of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral.
The event is sponsored by the church's chapter of Philoptochos, which means "friends of the poor." The group hopes to raise $30,000 this year, compared with $20,000 to $25,000 in past years, said Nikki Christu, a member of the organization.
Greek pastries, souvlaki, octopus, stuffed grape leaves and other Greek food made by Philoptochos members will be sold at the event, which is from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. today, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. The church is at the corner of Pinellas Avenue and Orange Street.
The organization assists nearly 300 people every year with money to pay their rent and bills and assistance finding jobs, Christu said.
"Our festival goes directly into the budget to help poor people," Christu said. "It doesn't matter whether they're Greek, Chinese -- it doesn't matter. If they're in need, we help them."
The festival features a drawing for a 2001 Chrysler PT Cruiser, two round-trip tickets to Greece and four televisions. Greek music will be performed at the event. The admission fee is $1. For more information, call (727) 937-3540.