Mark your social calendars for Saturday, March 10, 2018. The Greek American Heritage Society of Philadelphia will be hosting next year’s annual Photo Tour at the renowned Philadelphia History Museum. The event is entitled “Photo Tour 2018, A Musical Odyssey – The Heritage of Greek Music in Philadelphia.”
Who were the Greek bands and musicians from Philadelphia’s music scene? What common history do Philadelphia Greeks and rebetiko music share? What festivals, homes, organizations, and bouzoukia nightclubs hosted Greek nights? Spanning nearly 100 years with photo exhibits, timeline displays, guest speakers, and films, the evening will be a musical tribute dedicated to the Greek American experience spanning the 20th through to the 21st century.
Now in its fourth year, the Heritage Society has partnered with the Philadelphia History Museum to host the fourth edition of the Photo Tour. The Philadelphia History Museum engages Philadelphians and regional visitors with its extraordinary collections that reflect Philadelphia’s rich history and the diversity of its people and their neighborhoods through exhibitions, educational programs, and technology which explore the past to better understand the present.
The Heritage Society Photo Tour was initiated several years ago as a way to engage the community, to preserve their history, celebrate their rich culture, and preserve it for future generations. Each year, from throughout the Greater Delaware Valley, Greek Americans are invited to submit their favorite images for consideration at the annual exhibit. Along with images and presentations by guest speakers supplied by the Heritage Society, the event is a platform for Greeks in the Philadelphia region to share their common history, experiences and unite as a community. Judges review the selected photographs displayed at the event and winning images are recognized in various categories. Participants, often winners, are invited to the podium to share the history of the photographs and their Greek ancestry. “People become emotional when they talk about their photographs. And we Greeks love to share our culture,” says Nick Yiantsos, President of Heritage Society.
Last year’s event, themed “The Immigrant,” was held in Camden, New Jersey at Cooper Hospital. It featured the early Greeks of the 20th century and their lives primarily in the Greektown part of Philadelphia (around 10th and Locust). On several occasions, after reviewing the images displayed, Greeks have found common bonds when they identify mutual friends and relatives in images they never knew they existed.
“This event is much needed and overdue for Philadelphia Greeks. We have our festivals, dances, and church events. They have made great contributions to our Hellenic culture, but the Heritage Society does more. It ties the past to our present and the Greek-American experience in our great City of Philadelphia and surrounding area. Through the arts and other cultural events, the Heritage Society educates as well as entertains,” said this year’s event chairman, Eleftherios Kostans.
It’s time for our Philadelphia community to join the rest of the Greek diaspora communities around the nation that have a home and host these type of affairs. A common place where we can share our experiences and look from the past into the future. “This year’s Photo Tour at the Philadelphia History Museum will be a landmark event no one should miss. We invite anyone interested in joining us, visit our site, and share their stories”, added Kostans.