Oxi Day marks Greek resistance against the Nazis

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Traditional: Members of the Greek Folk Dance Group at Picton Thirlmere Bargo RSL to perform on Oxi Day.

Australian Greeks everywhere last week took part in events that marked the 75th anniversary of Oxi Day.

Oxi is the Greek word for no (pronounced ohi) and the day – on October 28 – commemorates that country’s World War II effort in pushing back the advancing armies of the Axis powers in 1940.

Greeks, fighting alongside Australian Diggers, tried desperately to repel the massive German and Italian armies at the Battle of Crete and other fronts.

Wreath laying ceremonies were held to commemorate Oxi Day, including at the Anzac Memorial in Hyde Park.

But the newly incorporated Macarthur Greeks weren’t going to be left out, and they organized their own local celebration at the Picton Thirlmere Bargo RSL last Saturday.

Members of the RSL joined with the Macarthur Greeks for a wreath laying ceremony underneath the Australian and Greek flags outside the club.

An expert on Oxi Day, Dr Panayiotis Diamantis, gave an excellent talk on the significance of the day afterwards.

Part of the day included a display of historical photographs from World War II.

Macarthur Greeks founder John Tsekas said the day was a great success.

[social_quote duplicate=”no” align=”default”]“We had Greek sweets your grandmother would have made such as walnut cake, kourabiedes, baklava and galaktoboureko,’’ Mr Tsekas said.[/social_quote]

“Well, after all that eating it was time to dance.

“So in came the Greek Folk Dance group and they knocked out three rows of chairs as they needed more room.

“And they danced and danced until we had to pause as the bar at the club was due to open and veteran Freddie was to be the first to sample the collection of beers.

“After that there was more dancing and the barbecue was fired up.

“We had Greek salads and spinach pies and cheese pies and tzatziki and lots more.

“So we ate and drank responsibly till late.

“And we donated three olive trees to the club so we really need to get back there for olive consulting work,’’ Mr Tsekas said.



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