More than 500 Cretans and friends of Crete started the year of 2020 in a memorable way, convening for the Cretan Federation of Australia and New Zealand's 40th annual Convention in Adelaide, South Australia.
This years convention was historical as it marked 12 years since it was last held in Adelaide in 2008.
People from all around Australia attended the 4 day event, including members of the Cretan Association of Sydney & N.S.W, the Cretan Association of Canberra and Districts, the Cretan Brotherhood of Melbourne, the Cretan Brotherhood of Western Australia, the Cretan Association of Queensland, the Cretan Association of Tasmania, the Cretan Association of South Australia and the Pancretan Association of Melbourne.
The convention commenced on Thursday the 2nd January 2020, with a youth night. The following day, the Cretan Youth of Australia and New Zealand (CYANZ) held their Annual General Meeting where over 200 young people had the opportunity to exchange ideas on ways to promote their Cretan culture. At this meeting, Polina Nikolakakis was elected as the new President of the 2020-2023 CYANZ committee. In the evening, the South Australian Cretan Association hosted a Welcome Cocktail Night.
Day 3, Saturday the 4th January, the Cretan Federation of Australia and New Zealand held their Annual General Meeting with a full agenda being discussed and included the Federation unanimously elected Mr. Antonis Tsourdalakis as the new President for the term of 2020-2023.
Over 150 Cretan dancers filled the AUDC Wonderland Ballroom for the Dinner Dance featuring international guest Dimitris Apostolakis, who was accompanied by Yiannis Pollakis (Lyra/song) and Paddy Montgomery (Kithara).
The Convention Dinner Dance was honoured with the presence of His Eminence Archbishop Makarios of Australia.
The Cretan Association of South Australia President, Mr. Pantelis Fridakis welcomed attendees from all over Australia and expressed his gratitude for his association to host the convention. He then presented honorary plaques to Ms. Maria Lagoudakis and Mr. Antonis Tsourdalakis for all their assistance in preparing the convention.
The outgoing President, Ms. Maria Lagoudakis thanked all the members on her committee for their contribution and efforts during her three-year term, stating that the Federation has become a part of her heart and her soul.
The new president of the Federation, Mr. Antonis Tsourdalakis expressed his pleasure in being given the opportunity to preside over an organisation laid by his ancestors 40 years ago. He also noted the worthy work that all presidents and boards have done since the day the Federation was founded.
The Australian capital of Canberra will be hosting the 2021 Cretan Federation of Australia and New Zealand annual Convention.