Multiple weekend events in Tallahassee giving local economy a boost

Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 5:57 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Tallahassee and Leon County have a busy weekend ahead, with many options for residents and tourists to support the local economy.

Events include the Tallahassee Greek Food Festival, the Florida State University Cross Country Invitational at Apalachee Regional Park and the return of Boz Scaggs to Tallahassee at the Capital City Amphitheater.

As the local economy looks to bounce back from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, tourism dollars can be a big help.

Some of the events were canceled in 2020, and they’re making a highly anticipated comeback this year.

The Tallahassee Greek Food Festival involves hundreds of volunteers and months of planning. It will take place from 10:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. Friday, October 14, and Saturday, October 15, at the Holy Mother of God Greek Orthodox Church at 1645 Phillips Road.

“It’s a herculean task. No pun intended!” said “Gyro Chairman” Manny Joanos.

The event draws between 15,000-20,000 people each year; the Church expects about 80% this time.

“We’ll have gyro, we’ll have souvlaki, we’ll have moussaka, we’ll have pastitsio. For the desserts, that’s our best and our main dish right? We’ll have baklava, kataifi, finikia, and many more items,” Joanos said.

The festival is not only focused on food; live music and Greek dancing will also fill the two-day event.

“This is everything for us. It’s our lifeblood. We look forward every year to share our culture with the Tallahassee community,” Joanos said.

2021 also marks Leon County’s biggest cross country season in history.

On Friday and Saturday, Apalachee Regional Park will host the Florida State University Invitational Cross Country Meet, with more than 5,200 athletes participating, and 9,000 visitors.

Katie Kole, the Senior Marketing Director for the Leon County Division of Tourism, says the event will have a major economic impact.

“Leon County can expect to see a $4.5 million impact from just this meet alone,” Kole said.

The races are open to the public, and people will be able to new renovations to Apalachee Regional Park, including a new stage, restrooms, and packet pickup area.

Friday morning’s NCAA Pre-National Races cost $5 to attend, but Friday afternoon’s FSU Invitational Pre-State and Saturday morning’s FSU Invitational Pre-State are free to attend.

Saturday night also features a major event; the Boz Scaggs concert will be taking place in the Capital City Amphitheater. The location capitalizes on the nearly-complete Cascades Development.

“Now that we have the new hotel that’s right here on site, we have options for eating, options for people who want to get a drink right before the concert,” Kole explained.

Tickets for the concert are still available; you can purchase them here.

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