3 reasons you need to be at the St. Elias Lebanese Festival May 29-30


St. Elias 3 reasons you need to be at the St. Elias Lebanese Festival May 29-30
Eat all the great food—then burn it off on the dance floor. Photo via St. Elias Lebanese Festival on Facebook

This spring, experience the delicious food and rich culture of Lebanon—without ever leaving Birmingham. The 22nd annual St. Elias Lebanese Food & Cultural Festival is happening May 29-30, and you’re not going to want to miss it. Get all the details here!

Event Basics


This free event is a local favorite—and has been since it began in 1999. Volunteers serve and deliver thousands of plates of food every year. St.Elias Maronite Church hosts the festival, and tours are given every hour along with traditional dance performances by the youth of the parish.

  • What: St. Elias Lebanese Food & Cultural Festival
  • When: Friday & Saturday, May 29-30
  • Time: 10AM to 9PM both days
  • Who: St. Elias Maronite Catholic Church
  • Where: 836 8th St S, Birmingham, AL 35205
  • Cost: FREE and open to the public
  • Facebook | Instagram | Website

Here are three reasons you’re not going to want to miss out.

1—Why We’re Here: FOOD

The two-day festival will be offering up some Authentic Lebanese delicacies. Here’s a preview of what you’ll find:

  • Baked kibbee
  • Rolled grape leaves
  • Spinach pies
  • Baked kibbee and falafel sandwiches
  • Tabouleh (Lebanese salad)
  • Grilled Lebanese lemon chicken
  • Loobia (green beans)
  • Rice
  • Homus and pita bread

Be sure to save room for dessert!

  • A variety of baklawa
  • Kaak (Lebanese sugar cookie)
  • Lebanese ice cream

Prices for food will range from $3.00 a la carte spinach pies to plates of food for $12.00 and up. For the desserts, prices will range from $3.00 for most to $25.00 for a dessert sampler. Debit and credit cards accepted!

2—Dancing, Running, Bidding, Oh My!

Silent Auction: The silent auction will feature Lebanese dinners, restaurant gift certificates, sports memorabilia, tickets to local events and much more thanks to the support of local community business partners and parishioners. Want to donate a good or service? Click here.

5K Run: This year the Saint Elias Cedar 5K Run will be held on Saturday, May 30 at 8:00 AM followed by the Cedar Shake Fun Run at 9:00 AM. The run will benefit The Exceptional Foundation of Birmingham. The race will begin at the Church located at 836 8th Street South and will run through the historic Glen Iris neighborhood.

Dancing: The youth of the church will be performing traditional dances on an indoor stage beginning at 6PM Friday and at 12:30PM Saturday and continuing throughout the afternoon and evening. The New York-based Amin Sultan Lebanese Band will perform from 6PM to 9:30PM nightly.

Church Tours: Hourly guided tours, starting on the front steps of the historic St. Elias Church with its renovated interior, will be available from 11AM until 7 PM. Self-guided tours are available from 11AM to 8PM both days with an exclusion Saturday during the Saturday Vigil Liturgy, which all are welcome to attend.

3—Over Half a Million Donated

Great food, exciting celebrations—and some wonderful causes. Since the start of the festival, St. Elias has donated over $553,000 to local and national charities.

St. Elias donates 25% of the proceeds from the entire festival—check out their website for a full list of supported causes and organizations.

Follow St. Elias Festival on Instagram and Facebook to stay updated on festival news and updates. Don’t miss out, Birmingham!

Sponsored by:

Beth Cunningham
Beth Cunningham

A Birmingham transplant who can usually be found hitting a new hiking trail or restaurant opening when she's not writing stories and snapping photos for Bham Now.

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