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Yiasou Greek Festival Charlotte drive-thru only this year due to COVID-19

The event, a celebration of Greek culture, is scheduled to run from September 9 through September 12.
Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 9:55 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) -The annual Yiasou Greek Festival held in Charlotte’s Dilworth community will be drive-thru only this year.

Every year the gathering takes place at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Dilworth in celebration of Greek culture.

Festival organizers had planned for the event to be an outdoor, in-person gathering this year, but announced on Facebook Tuesday that plans were being changed.

When is it happening? September 9 through September 12, 2021.

» Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

» Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

» Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

» Sunday from noon until 6 p.m.

John Shelton, the media coordinator for Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral, explained that the event would be drive-thru only due to the continued spread of COVID-19.

“If we’re gonna be a part of this community in a big way, we needed to do everything we can to make sure that we promote the safety and wellbeing of everybody in the community, both those working the festival and those coming to it,” said Shelton in an interview Wednesday evening.

He said organizers are happy to at least have some version of the festival this year. Last year the event was canceled because of the pandemic.

“We look forward to the fellowship. We look forward to the memories and to cancel it completely was completely devastating,” said Shelton.

He is hoping that community members will still be intrigued by a drive-thru event. He said cars will line up in the church parking lot and there will likely be musicians performing while people wait to pick up their food.

“It’s not what we expected, but we hope you come and give us a try. Come and say ‘hello’ because we’re eager to greet you with that phrase that this entire community knows, especially at the beginning of September - Yiasou,” said Shelton.

The church media coordinator said people looking to attend the festival should check the event’s social media pages for further updates about the drive-thru plans.

The Greek festival isn’t the only event in the Charlotte area to be changed because of a rise in COVID-19 cases. The Matthews Alive festival scheduled for Labor Day Weekend has been canceled for the second year in a row, and the Carolina Panthers and Charlotte Knights have both announced that fans will now have to wear masks in indoor portions of their respective stadiums.

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