OPA! Greek Fest returns to Rochester, drive-thru model

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – If you love Greek food this is the perfect weekend for you.

The original Rochester Greek Fest has returned. The decades-long tradition began on Friday afternoon and ends on Sunday.

For the second year in a row, the annual event takes place exclusively in drive-through. But according to the Greek festival Website, The menu is bigger this year. People can buy authentic Greek food like gyros, baklava, and kabobs.

All money raised by the Greek Fest will go to a nonprofit organization which offers free accommodation to the patients of the Mayo Clinic.

“The tradition has existed since 1957. You speak of more than 50 years of camaraderie and friendship,” said organizer Ari Kolas. “And we want to preserve our ethical culture. Together with all the new cultures of our church. This is our biggest party of the year. We love to share it with everyone in the community. “

The Greek festival takes place on Friday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Rochester church offers outside leisure for youths

BYRON, Minn. (KTTC) – It’s been a strange year for kids, especially when it comes to school.

“A little bit, but it’s almost normal now,” said Aaron McCright, Evangel United Methodist Children’s Church member.

Their experiences were all different.

“The last time I was in a school building was last March when I went to high school,” said Church member and teenager Josh Elgin.

They were very excited about the opportunities to make contacts safely through their church this winter. Evangel United Methodist in Rochester has hosted outdoor social events for its youth groups.

“Sometimes it’s mission projects and ministries. Sometimes it’s social projects. Today, on a fine day, we decided to go to Oxbox Park,” said Jim Klepper, director of Christian education at Evangel United Methodist.

The Kids Club event on Sunday March was a way for the kids to have fun in a year far from it. The group visited Oxbox Park and Zollman Zoo in Byron.

“Super important. It was important because children were isolated,” said Klepper. “All of our events since the start of COVID have been out. We found ways to meet safely.”

“I really like her,” said McCright.

“We’re home schooled so we like it. We saw a few friends but not very many,” said the Church member and Winona-resident Bingham Lindberg.

It may be a windy start to spring, but it was the perfect opportunity for kids to see their favorite animals.

“I like the cats. They are adorable,” said Evelyn Elgin.

“I like the wolf,” said Bingham.

“I like the coyotes,” added his brother Billy.

“I think the cats and the predators,” said McCright. “I kind of like the birds too.”

“You’re having a great time,” said Klepper. “They’re hard to keep up with because they’re on the move all the time.”

He says the church has found new ways to minister to the children, from driving through the virtual church camp last summer to online Sunday school lessons to watching a children’s TV show.

Rochester Arts and Leisure Excited to Reopen in April

ROCHESTER, NY – The arts and entertainment venue may reopen with capacity restrictions starting next month.

“It’s fantastic news for us in the performing arts industry,” said Curtis Long, President and CEO of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.

What you need to know

  • Event Spaces, Arts and Entertain can be opened from April 2nd
  • Venues can be 33% full, or up to 100 people indoors and up to 200 people outdoors
  • If guests test COVID-19 negative, the capacity can be increased to up to 150 people indoors and up to 500 people indoors
  • People must adhere to social distancing guidelines, and face covering is still required

Performances have been held virtually since the pandemic began, but will likely take place again at the Eastman Theater in Rochester this week under new guidance from the governor.

“We’re excited to have the opportunity to play again for a live audience during the orchestra, either indoors or outdoors,” Long said. “Yesterday’s announcement made it possible for one of these things to happen in April.”

The venues can operate at 33% capacity, or up to 100 people indoors and up to 200 people outdoors.

If guests test COVID-19 negative, the capacity can be increased to up to 150 people indoors and up to 500 people indoors.

The announcement is exciting for Comedy on the Carlson but is waiting for final confirmation after a false start last year. The comedy club says it reopened briefly in the summer but has closed due to changes in state guidelines.

“We’re 98% sure we can do this. We just need the Alcohol Board’s okay and we can get going on April 2nd,” said Mark Ippolito, director of operations of comedy at Carlson.

Right now, comedy safety is a top priority at Carlson.

“We want people to feel safe when they come here. We want them to know that they are safe when they come here. Come here, they will come to other places here in the city and that will only boost the economy, “added Ippolito.

It will be a hopeful boost for Rochester, known for its arts, culture and entertainment scenes.

“As long as all of these venues and entertainment venues choose to act responsibly and provide safe spaces for everything, it’s going to work great,” said Ippolito.

While the venues are allowed to open next month, people must adhere to social distancing guidelines and face coverings are still required.