In the Dutchess County Spotlight
DCAC Folk Arts Program: Greek Children's Day
The Dutchess County Arts Council Folk Arts Program, the Hyde Park Free Library, and the Kimisis Greek Afternoon School present a Greek Children's Day program on Saturday, May 12, from 1pm to 2:30pm at the Hyde Park Free Library Annex. During this free, interactive program, children can participate in many aspects of Greek children's culture, including language, dancing, and mythology. Featured activities include learning to twist or braid koulourakia (a traditional, lightly sweet butter cookie; everyone gets to take home their hand-twisted koulourakia to bake and enjoy, recipe provided!), building Greek columns, watching Greek youth perform Hassaposeviko (a traditional Greek folk dance), and tasting galaktoboureko (a traditional Greek baked custard dish). Additional participatory activities include a sing along and learning-and performing-some steps of the Hassaposeviko dance.
Alphabet, buffalo, chorus, democracy, epitaph, genesis, helicopter-these are just a few of many familiar English words that actually are "borrowed" from Greek. While the majority of such words are scientific (astronomy, geography, biology), other English language categories rich with Greek-derived words are education and sports (gymnasium, marathon, mathematics), Christianity (Eucharist, bishop, catholic), theater (drama), animals (crocodile), and place names (Egypt, Ethiopia). Visiting children can play a word game to learn some of the many English words of Greek origin.
The Arts Council's Greek Children's Day program is one in a series exploring how people from counties whose populations are represented here celebrate and honor their children. Previous programs have highlighted Japanese, Indian, Chinese, Korean, Russian, and Ukrainian children's culture. At each event, youth of the respective cultural groups engage children in interactive, hands-on activities, including games and songs, stories, and paper crafts. Attendees enjoy tasting sweet treats associated with the respective cultures.
In 1954 the United Nations General Assembly suggested all countries institute a Universal Children's Day, a directive that's been variously interpreted. Whether it's a national holiday or a community-based celebration, Children's Day festivities are a great way to learn about children's folklore, including games, rhymes, songs, and other forms of child's play. The Folk Arts Program Children's Day series, funded by a grant from Stewart's Shops Holiday Match fund, is a fun way to learn how kids from various cultural backgrounds play.
Children and adults are welcome to come and go at this Greek Children's Day Celebration. The Hyde Park Free Library Annex is located adjacent to the Library, 2 Main Street in Hyde Park (corner of Route 9 and Main Street). This family-friendly, interactive program is free and open to everyone. For information, call 845-454-3222 or see www.artmidhudson.org
The DCAC Folk Arts Program researches and presents forms of creative expression associated with the diverse heritages represented in the Mid-Hudson region. residents. Through educational programs, the program interprets the ethnic, occupational, and religious traditions. The Dutchess County Arts Council, founded in 1964, is a non-profit arts service organization dedicated to strengthening and supporting artists and arts organizations in the Mid-Hudson Valley region.