With one out of every ten of its nearly 25,500 residents claiming Greek ancestry, Tarpon Springs, Florida, has the highest concentration of Greeks living in any city in the United States. The Gulf Coast town just outside of Tampa comes alive with Hellenic culture, with the ever-present aromas of Greek cooking wafting from the open windows of its many restaurants and bakeries flanking Dodecanese Boulevard downtown (named after Greece’s Dodecanese Islands).
DJ Phil the Thrill, a local Greek DJ and Producer says, “Even today, more than a century after Greek deep-sea divers immigrated here in search of sea sponges, established Tarpon Springs as the sponge capital of the world”. Tarpon Springs’ Greek roots hold true, with the city developing sister city relationships in Kalymnos, Symi, Halki, and Larnaca.
“During the cooler months,” Phil Gaitan aka DJ Phil the Thrill says, “the Greek restaurants and shops along Dodecanese Blvd. in Tarpon Springs play host to an outdoor Extravaganza which includes foods, music, and dance from Greece. “It’s as close as you can get to being in Greek town or village without leaving the United States”.