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Pan-Hellenism Weekend 2010 Recap

December 6, 2010

Local Greeks partied with Greeks from over two dozen states during the PHW 2010 Friday Greek Night at James Hoban's.

We wanted to take a long overdue moment to thank everyone who attended Pan-Hellenism Weekend 2010. Although we admittedly had a smaller turnout than last year, thanks to the economy finally catching up to Greek America and a host of other events up and down the East Coast that kept some of our loyal attendees from the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic from coming up this year, we certainly hope that those who did make it into town this year took advantage of the chance to really get to know the smaller group that was in town.

Producing these events from year to year gives us a chance to rethink some of the things we normally do at PHW and to try to bring one or two new twists to the event every year. The move to the West End of DC to the Marriott Renaissance Dupont Circle was a welcome change for most of our regulars who come from year to year, as being a few blocks from the top of Georgetown and Dupont Circle was certainly appreciated. Our goal of being the most pedestrian friendly Greek weekend event was satisfied in finding James Hoban’s for the Greek Night on Friday, only 4 blocks from the hotel and right in Dupont Circle. The venue also went a long way to addressing a long standing complaint about being on multiple narrow floors for Greek Night, with everyone comfortably fitting its single floor. James Hoban’s was the perfect place for the first night with the layout allowing for people to actually have a conversation on one end of the bar and still enjoy dancing on the other end. We want to thank DJs Chilly and Dio for putting on a great night despite literally having minutes to set up before doors opened and having to improvise with no standard DJ booth set up at the bar.

One of the unexpected surprises of the weekend was how nice the Rooftop Happy Hour at AHEPA Headquarters turned out. We want to especially thank AHEPA for investing in three propane torch heaters that made the 50 degree temperatures on the rooftop an afterthought. (We were kicking people off the roof well past 7:00 PM despite that the temperatures had dropped after sundown just so we could make it back to the hotel to set up for the Dance on time.) It was the first time that a group whose age didn’t average 60+ took advantage of the views and comfortable atmosphere up there and in hopes of changing that, we promised AHEPA Headquarters that we’d post a link to get more members to join the various organizations in the AHEPA Family. The food from Yamas Mediterranean Grill and Plaka Grill was the perfect touch and we hope to add more restaurants next year to Mezemania.

Richmond and Tidewater areas of Virginia represented well at PHW 2010.

Obviously our own disappointment lies in the turnout for Saturday Night’s Semiformal at the hotel, which despite the low attendance saw everyone have a great time with plenty of food from the buffet to go around. We particularly want to thank the group that came up from Richmond who were definitely the life of the party that night forming at least two dance lines on their own with Apollonia and DJ Manolis doing a fantastic job as always. Those who stayed for No Rules Sunday at ultrabar on Sunday Night saw it dominated by one rules from a vocal minority: "Just play Greek music."

A couple of other of new cosponsors that we wanted to thank were the DEREE-The American College of Greece and the International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) DC Metropolitan Committee. Many of the current college students at PHW 2010 met Jesus from the American College of Greece who also is heavily involved in the National Hellenic Student Association, the umbrella organizations for university based Hellenic Societies across the country. We’re certainly looking forward to working with him on this event and other things in the future. We were happy that the IOCC was able to get a table of PHW 2010 attendees to their event on Sunday Night; an impressive accomplishment given that their ticket price was higher than many attendees paid for our entire weekend lineup of events.

Read past feature articles