Best of the Day: Tarpon Springs Epiphany Celebration

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It's not just a Greek, religious and Tarpon Springs tradition — it's a Tampa Bay institution. The cross-diving celebration of Epiphany begins at 8 a.m. with mass and festivities at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 36 N. Pinellas Ave, Tarpon Springs.

At noon, you can catch the blessing of the waters led by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta. Follow a traditional procession at 12:30 p.m. with clergy, altar servers, visiting dignitaries, school children dressed in traditional Greek costumes, a band, choir, teen divers and the dove bearer with the white dove symbolizing the Holy Spirit. The dove bearer will release the dove and the Greek Orthodox male youths will dive for the Epiphany cross.

Celebrate afterward at 1:30 p.m. at the Spanos­ Pappas Community Center Theofilos Hall 348 N. Pinellas Ave. with food, drink, live music and dancing. Admission is $3. With the great Florida winter weather, it's also a great time to stroll the nearby sponge docks.

Mon., Jan. 6, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Free; celebration admission is $3. spongedocks.net.

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