Local Festivities & Events

Like throughout Greece and thus in Mykonos various customs, events, celebrations and festivals revive every year, festivities in which the people of Mykonos take part, respecting the religious and traditional elements of their island.

Children with lighted lanterns and sometimes even with musical instruments pour on the streets and singing Christmas carols during Christmas Eve, New Year and Epiphany Day. The so-called "podariko" is a custom on the island. The Mykonians pay special attention to the people who will cross the threshold on the first day of the year.

The Epiphany Day also is a great feast for the island. Priests are passing the streets and bless their homes on their way. In this way all the residents arrive to the port where the cross is thrown into the water in order to wait and see who will be the one to catch him every year.

The major festival of Mykonos is the Carnival, where all sorts of disguises appear in the narrow streets of the windy island. Of course the so-called ‘koukougeroi’ (masquerades with old clothes, humpback) could not be missing from this feast, since they excite all Mykonos island with their voices and their teasing. The Carnival festivities last until Ash Monday.

The waiting for the Easter celebration finds the Mykonians whitewashing their houses and the housewives to prepare the so-called "Lazarakia" (bread shaped into human form). The Holy Week passes by in an atmosphere of devoutness until the Easter Day, in which the celebrations begin in every home in the morning and has its peak in the evening in the main square for the burning of "Judas".

Another tradition revived every year in Mykonos on the celebration of Agios Ioannis Fotaristi (June 24th) is the burning of wreaths that have been made on May Day, as well as the custom of Klidona (June 23th). Under the latter a boy whos both parents are alive brings in a pot with silent water, in which he throws an object, usually a jewelry, and leaves the pot all night outside under the stars. The next day, while he put his hand into the pot to catch the object, the girls would tell a couplet.

Many more festivals take place on the windy island of Mykonos, such as the Harvest Festival which is held at the Agricultural Museum in the second or third Sunday of September. The delicious "krommydopites" and "kouvarotes" (individual small rounded bread pieces) come together with the storytellers in order to accompany this great celebration of food, dance and singing.

The famous festivals are:

• June 30th, Agion Apostolon (Fishermen festival)
• July 26th, Agia Paraskevi
• July 27th, Agia Panteleimon (Marathi)
• August 12th, Virgin Mary Tourliani (Ano Mera)
• August 23rd, Novena of Virgin Mary
• December 6th, Agios Nikolaos

Finally, the events held in Mykonos island vary each year.
The constant ones are organized at the Municipal Art Gallery, which hosts various exhibitions from time to time, and those organized by the Public Enterprise of Cultural Projection and Growth of Mykonos, which coordinates the "cultural summer."

Do not forget the annual gay festival taking place in different places each time.

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