In a unique offering, the Rotary Satellite Club of Orewa-Millwater, from its 3rd annual Greek Extravaganza evening on 30th November at the Orewa Arts and Events Centre, has donated $23k to Auckland’s Harbour Hospice Hibiscus Community.
The Greek Extravaganza is the increasingly popular brainchild of Rotarian Theo Simeonidis, who this year brought new dimensions in entertainment for the 250 guests.
Undoubtedly, the spectacular new attraction was Arabella’s Bellydance with Tais, which drew great applause – and audience participation during the encore. The music took everyone back in time to the 1930s, to celebrate the spirit of Rembetiko, the Greek urban “blues”, featuring the specially-assembled Sounds of Greece & Friends performing music of the era.  The display of traditional Greek dancing in full costume by the Athena Dance Group of Tauranga and Auckland added yet another colourful dimension.
Authentic Greek food, wine and beer, provided by Taste Greece of Brown’s Bay, ensured a total immersion in all things Greek. Generous sponsorship by local businesses and private individuals guaranteed that all operating costs were covered and that Hospice received an amount equivalent to the combined profit of the previous two years.  Major sponsorship was received from Platinum Sponsors New World Whangaparaoa and The Hibiscus & Bays Local Board of Auckland Council, plus Gold Sponsors Insphire and Mexico Silverdale.
Theo Simeonidis told us, “It was particularly good to see so many Rotarians and Friends of Rotary getting involved and all working towards the goal of making the Greek Extravaganza one of the most enjoyable, premier fund-raising attractions on the Hibiscus Coast.” The significant popularity of this annual Rotary cultural event ensured that it was a sell-out 10 weeks in advance – and planning for the 2020 Greek Extravaganza is already under way!
Written by Brian Mullen, Secretary, Rotary Satellite Club of Orewa-Millwater