Armenian Fest: July 21
It began in the 1930s, when groups of Armenian families gathered for a summer picnic featuring traditional Mediterranean dishes made from treasured family recipes.
Today, the picnic has grown into a full-blown festival and is a popular stop for people of Armenian heritage and hungry folks who want a break from the brats and burgers monotony of other festivals.
Armenian food takes center stage at this festival, and the offerings resemble Greek and other Eastern Mediterranean cuisines, but with different spices and seasonings. The menu will include chicken and beef kebob, cheese and spinach burek, lamajoun (a pizza-like meat dish served on thin tortilla-like dough), hummus (a dip made of chickpeas), tabouleh (a green salad without lettuce), choreg (breadsticks), vegetarian and meat sarma (stuffed grape leaves) and a mouthwatering array of baklava and other traditional pastries.
Armenian wine will be served, along with beer and soft drinks.
Where: St. John the Baptist Armenian Orthodox Church, 7825 W. Layton Ave.
Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Highlights: In addition to food, Armenian Fest offers a cultural booth selling books and artifacts relating to Armenia and tours of the church. There will be live Armenian music all day by Chicago's Hye Vibes.
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