Dave and Gerry's Alonissos Island Information Site

National (Independence) Day - 25th March 2016

The celebration last year at the war memorial was cancelled due to the weather and this year the run-up to the celebration looked dodgy but the rain held off and the weather was overcast with a chilly wind but not enough to halt the celebration.  For the first time Dave was invited to dance at the Independence Day celebration and so things were somewhat different this year to previous years.

Gerry was dropped off in Patitiri around 10am in the safe hands of Demi, Jan and Netty near to the war memorial, because Dave had to change into his Ipeirus costume for the marching parade and the Greek dancing.  After changing, Dave went up to the war memorial around 10.30am where most of the ceremony had been completed, except for the presentation of award certificates to all the high achievers in the school followed by a young woman reading from a script about Greece gaining of independence from the Ottoman Empire.  After this everyone involved in the marching parade headed off to the top of the high street to form up into their groups.

As always the crowd assembled along the road to Roussoum Yialos to watch the marching display which is always led by the youngest children in traditional Greek dress carrying a large Greek flag and waving small Greek flags.  As in previous years the school children had a front group with the flag bearer going first, followed by the rest of the children following behind.  For the first time in our memory of National Day celebrations the adult dance group were included in the marching parade as the penultimate group before the scouts.  Each group were applauded enthusiastically as they marched along the road.

After the marching finished everyone made their way to the amphitheatre where two of Christina's childrens dance groups treated the audience to a display of traditional dancing.  The children danced very well for their ages and Christina has done a brilliant job in teaching the children that we hope will be the future dancers of Alonissos.  There were 18 dancers in the adult group with Dave, Kostas, Yiannis and Yorgos in Ipeirus costume and 14 ladies in different traditional Alonissos dresses.

Yorgos explained that mainland dances were traditional for Independence Day and so he chose Φεσοδερβέναγας and Παραμυθιά (Ipeirus), Μηλίτσα (Pondos), Ελενίτσα (Megara) ending with Σύρε-Σύρε (Macedonia).  The dance Μηλίτσα from Pondos was dedicated to the memory of our last island priest Father Avraam who came from Pondos and died in tragic circumstances last year on Skopelos, so it was wonderful that this year he could be remembered in dance for what he contributed to the island in his short time on Alonissos.

Although there was a chill edge to the wind, the sun came out and it was a wonderful celebration of Greek history and we look forward to next year.


Independence Day Banner

Road Marked Out For The Marching Parade

Names Of The School Prize Winners Being Read Out

History Of Greek Independence Being Told

Wreaths Layed At The War Memorial

Dave In Traditional Ipeirus Greek Dress

Christina's Younger Dance Group Ready To Dance

Christina's Older Dance Group Entering The Amphitheatre

Adult Dance Group Ready To Start Their Dance Performance

Dave Dancing With The Adult Dance Group
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