Dave and Gerry's Alonissos Island Information Site
 

Panagia on Alonissos - 15th August 2011

Panagia was celebrated in the Old Village on the evening of Monday August 15th with signs written in Greek on large sheets going up in Patitiri and one across the pine trees in the Old Village.  A 6pm start time was indicated on the signs but this was changed to 7pm which is a more realistic start time.  In fact it was so hot and humid that evening that Dave had a word with Petros the mayor and he said that a 7.30pm start time was more likely due to the heat, so that it was a bit cooler for those taking part in the re-enactment of the traditional wedding.  While things were being organised we ordered drinks from Peri Orexios which were free as it was Panos' name day.

The stage had been erected and the band were getting their equipment sorted out and the Dimos workers had finished the seating arrangements for the evening.  The traditional ceramic bowls were loaded onto a table outside the side terrace of Taverna Panselinos and there was the usual scrum to get the bowls with the best designs to eat the goat and spaghetti being cooked under cover opposite the Fantasia Apartments.  While this was happening all the brides attendants were sent down to Taverna Panselinos for a photo shoot in their traditional costumes.  The bridegroom also posed for photos prior to heading off to Konstantina's Apartments where he is collected by the wedding entourage.

Things eventually kicked off at 8pm when the musicians led the wedding entourage up towards Plateia Christos to collect the "best man" and "matron of honour" from the Hiliadromia Studios where they were standing and waiting.  There was no dancing this year but drinks and traditional cakes were handed out to the crowd before the entourage set off from the plateia and turned down the steps by Fantasia Apartments and down passed Nik and Lyn's house to Konstantina's Apartments .  We took our short cut passed Berger's house and met the entourage just as they were entering Konstantina's Apartments.  More tsipouro and sweets were handed out to the crowd and the musicians played and we had dancing and another photo shoot before the musicians led everyone out through the archway and off along the bottom road of the Old Village and then up towards the Traditional House Museum to ask for the bride's hand in marriage.

We went back up the path and took the steps upwards to the Traditional House Museum in the upper Old Village.  Unlike previous Panagia's the door of the Museum was open and the bride was posing for photographs dressed in her traditional wedding dress before her groom appeared.  The procession came along the thoroughfare led by the musicians and stopped outside the front door.  After some banter the groom was eventually allowed to enter and he and his bride went up to the balcony to pose for photographs before leaving to go to Plateia Iroon.  Pictures of the events are shown on this page.

In Plateia Iroon the musicians played and the wedding party danced for the assembled crowd.  When the dancing ended the wedding party left for the lower Plateia outside Taverna Panselinos where the band started to play and after a short break the groom and bride led the wedding party in the first of many dances.  There was a much larger crowd of people than in previous years and all enjoyed free wine and tsipouro from the Dimos and ate the excellent goat and spaghetti.  On the tressle tables people ate and enjoying the evening and in the background the band played and people joined in the traditional dances.

We had our food and drink and joined into the circle dancing before heading off home around 1am while Apostoli the bus driver was still driving up and down the road between Patitiri and the Old Village.  People claimed that they could still hear the music playing at 4am but we were long in the land of nod by then.  This Panagia was one of the best we have experienced as it was well organised and it was lovely to see our Mayor Petros being part of the proceedings.

 

Banner Advertising Panagia 2011
 

This is us Toasting Panos on his Name Day
 

Stage for the Musicians
 

Seating Arrangements For the Evening
 

Food For the Evening Being Cooked
 

Bride's Attendants Posing for the Crowds
 

Bridegroom Posing for the Crowds
 

Wedding Entourage Heading to Plateia Christos
 

Collecting the "Best Man" and "Matron of Honour" From the Hiliadromia Apartments
 

Greek Dancing at the Bridegroom's House
 

Bride Posing in Traditional Wedding Dress at the Traditional House Museum
 

Wedding Procession Coming Along the Main Thoroughfare of the Upper Old Town.
 

Traditional Dancing in Plateia Iroon
 

People Eating Traditionally Cooked Goat and Pasta
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