Last month, St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church, 2101 N.E. 162nd Ave, held its 41st annual Middle East Festival, where hospitality is a key component. The one-day event at the church in the Wilkes neighborhood has grown so large—more than 600 people attended this year—that its volunteer organizers are considering making it a two-day party next year.
The event celebrates middle eastern food, drink and people and brings cultural performances to east Portland. In addition, those seeking to learn more about the church and faith are welcomed.
The St. George Dancers, one of the church’s youth groups, perform dabke, an Arab folk-dance native to the Levant that is usually performed at Arabic celebrations.