Saturday, October 23, 7:30 pm–10:00 pm
Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts (via skywalk from Hilton); 222 Market St.

This live event will not be recorded.

Sponsored by the American Folklore Society


Join as one of Harrisburg’s favorite bands Sviraj! helps us close out our meeting with a fun gathering, some socially-distanced dancing, a cash bar, and food from some of Harrisburg’s favorite family restaurants (descriptions below). We’ll spread out and party at the Whitaker Center adjacent to the Hilton.

Simply Greek. Briarcrest Square, Hershey, PA

The owner, George Tsambas is the son of Alex Tsambas, who owns The Soda Jerk Diner in Hummelstown, PA. The family hails from the island of Chios in Greece, but George is American born and raised. His cousin is the chef. The restaurant is noted for its fabulous authentic Greek cuisine, featuring treats like souvlaki with tzatziki sauce, pita wraps, interesting salads (with unexpected vegetables like beets), dishes with the imported Greek cheese like tiropita or spanakopita, and extraordinary desserts, including baklava and Greek butter and almond cookies. The restaurant is small and intimate, but the bulk of his business is take-out, especially for the nearby major Penn State Hershey Medical Center.

Mara’s Mini-Store. East Main Street, Hummelstown, PA

Mara Pagan, the owner of this small shop, began serving authentic hand-crafted Puerto Rican food in the back of her shop less than a year ago. Her husband is the chef, and each day he hand mixes and cooks a wide variety of traditional Puerto Rican foods right on site. The empanadas are cooked for you while you wait, rice, bean and pork dishes are available as well as a huge array of traditional Puerto Rican foods. Her shop is tiny, and the sheer volume of guests looking for delicious food has led them to change the layout of the store so more people can order. They are friendly and outgoing. The shop is only for take-out.

Mom’s Momo and Deli, Derry St. Harrisburg, PA

Lal Tamang and his family are part of a large group of Nepali refugees who were expelled from Bhutan in 1992. Because they are Hindi and refused to convert to Buddhism, the national religion of Bhutan, they became landless people who eventually found Harrisburg a comfortable place to live and raise families. The food of Nepal is an interesting combination of Indian curries, Chinese noodles and dumplings and their own unique blends of spices. Momo are their dumplings, with many choices of fillings. Most of the food is heavily spiced with Indian spices, hot peppers (they are quite aware that not everyone likes so much fire, so they are modified) and delicious greens, including partially fermented mustard greens. Lal makes everything by hand, and by his own recipes in the kitchen of his shop. His shop is a former Subway restaurant, and one can eat in, but most people just get take-out.