Greek Night Dinner planned

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Photo submitted Savvas Mourtzis and his father Tasos Mourtzis cook up meat at a Greek Night Dinner at United Church of Beloit in their trademark superhero aprons. This year's event is set for 5-7 p.m. on Sept. 14.

BELOIT - A flavorful evening and a little "opa" is in store for those who attend the United Church of Beloit's Fourth Annual Greek Night Dinner.

The event will be held in the church parking lot at 657 Bluff St. If it rains, the dinner will move indoors.

"It's a great way to enjoy authentic Greek food. There's still a little bit of summer weather left to enjoy an outdoor event," added United Church of Beloit's Lead Minister Steve Erkel.

Savvas Mourtzis and his father Tasos Mourtzis, natives of Greece, will be cooking the feast.

The event will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 14. It's $5 for a gyro sandwich and $8 for an authentic gyro with a side salad. It will be $2 for Greek desserts including baklava, a sweet treat with phyllo dough and walnuts.

The salad may feature a few garden-plucked produce items.

For those who haven't tasted Greek fare before, Savvas Mourtzis explained the gyro will include cucumber Greek yogurt sauce, seasoned pork, tomatoes and onions stuffed in a soft pita.

Erkel noted there aren't a lot of Greek food options in the Stateline Area and the dinner is a great way for people to sample Mediterranean cuisine among friendly people.

The Mourtzises will start cooking three days before the big feast, with the pork for the gyros to be marinated in special Greek seasonings.

United Church of Beloit's first Greek dinner was held a few years back in March in honor of Greece's Independence Day on March 25. Later the event was moved to dates with warmer weather to allow for the outdoor experience.

The festive event features volunteers who sometimes sport superhero aprons.

Savvas Mourtzis, work works at Aptiv in Janesville with people with disabilities, is originally from the port city of Thessaloniki. He and his father share a love of cooking.

Savvas Mourtzis, along with two other Beloit residents, were recognized in December 2018 for heroism in saving six lives during an Oct. 12 house fire on Tenth Street. Mourtizis is also director with The Foundry Theatre Group, which welcomes people with special needs to participate.

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