Sydney’s Inner West Council gave its greatest honour to the Greeks and Greek-Australians who built Marrickville with the official launch of the Little Greece Precinct.
The Precinct was opened with a ceremony held at the Alex Trevallion Plaza on Saturday June 18, which was emceed by Alex Lykos, President of the Marrickville Theatre Company, and featured music, dancing and speeches from official guests.
The Consul General of Greece in Sydney, Mr Christos Karras, in his speech, praised this acknowledgement of the Hellenic contribution to not only Marrickville, but to Australia in general, as a “true sign of friendship” between the two nations.
“We celebrate our common values that bind us as faithful friends and we honour the great contributions that Greek-Australians have made to multicultural Australian society,” the Greek diplomat said.
Mayor of Inner West Darcy Byrne, in his address, stressed the vast impact the Greek community has had in the area he called the “birthplace of Australian multiculturalism”.
“No one has done more than the Greek diaspora to build multiculturalism in Australia. That is the reason that this act of basic recognition and respect is so important,” Mayor Byrne said.
State MP for Summer Hill Jo Haylen also expressed her delight with the launch, while asking that the Hellenic contributions to the area continue to persevere and thrive.
“Little Greece is being named today but Little Greece needs to keep going strong. We want to make sure that this remains the social, economic and cultural heart for many Greek-Australians now and into the future,” MP Haylen said in her speech.
The launch was capped off with the unveiling of the plaque as well as a group photo in front of the council-commissioned mural by artist Ox King called “Hestia’s Migration”.
The mural took inspiration from the tale of Hestia, the Goddess of the hearth, chiefly from her giving up her seat at Olympus for Dionysus, with the mural inferring she made her way to Sydney and settled there.
The event also featured music and dancing from Tassos Bouzouki and the St Nicholas Church Greek Dancing Group.
Many official guests and community leaders attended in addition to those listed here, including State MP for Canterbury Sophie Cotsis and Inner West Councillor Zoi Tsardoulias.