Tarpon Springs Diving For The Cross

Tarpon Springs Diving For The Cross on Epiphany Sunday, January 6, 2019 to celebrate Epiphany.  The following is a history given by Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral at 36 N Pinellas Ave Tarpon Springs, FL 34689. 727-937-3540. You can access the website here.

Tarpon Springs Diving For The Cross 

Tarpon Springs Diving For The Cross 2017
Courtesy of Tampa Bay Times

History of Epiphany

The Orthodox Christian celebrates Epiphany on January 6th of each year, in remembrance of the baptism of Jesus Christ in the Jordan River 2000 years ago. Following tradition, the Greek community established January 6th of each year be celebrated with the sanctification of the waters; and immersion of the cross in the Spring bayou on “Cross Day” or “Epiphany”.

The first observance of Epiphany in Tarpon Springs was in 1903 in an Episcopal church attended by few people. In the next few years, as the news spread throughout the US and Canada, devoted Greeks and Americans made the pilgrimage from the nation and Canada to take part in the celebration of Epiphany and its three-day festivities.

Tarpon Springs Diving For The Cross 

A golden cross is thrown into the water, at the same moment, the young men  dive into the waters. They swim, wrestle, and churn the waters in search of the cross. The throwing of the cross symbolizes casting of the bread of truth upon the troubled world.

Furthermore, the diver who retrieves the cross kneels before the Archbishop  while handing him the golden cross. At this time, the Archbishop blesses the young man and congratulates him.

Finally, whoever retrieves the cross, it is said that he will have good fortune and divine beneficence. Upon return to the church, the divers stand at the altar, while the retriever receives special blessings. 

The procession to Spring Bayou for the Dive starts at 12:15pm. (noon). 

This information courtesy of Toni Weidman. If you have further questions, direct them to Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church at the phone number/website above.

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Toni Weidman, GRI
Broker-associate
Sailwinds Realty
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Tarpon Springs Diving For The Cross

Diving For The Cross 2016 Tarpon Springs FL

Diving For The Cross 2016 Tarpon Springs FL. The Epiphany 110th Dive in Tarpon Springs FL will take place  at Spring Bayou in Tarpon Springs, FL. 20,000 plus people are expected to attend. This year’s date is  Wednesday, Jan 6, 2016. (Epiphany is always Jan 6). Please see my 2017 post here.

Diving For The Cross 2016 Tarpon Springs FL

Diving For The Cross 2016 Tarpon Springs FL

Expect road closures beginning at approximately 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday January 6th, 2016 for the Epiphany Celebration, detours will be till approximately 2:30 p.m. Local young men dive into the waters of Spring Bayou to get the white cross thrown in by Archbishop Demetrius, primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, who will be presiding over the dive. Diving for the cross represents Christ’s baptism and the dove represents the Holy Spirit.

Epiphany 2016 Tarpon Springs FL. Expect road closures beginning at approximately 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday January 6th, 2016 for the Epiphany Celebration, detours will be till approximately 2:30 p.m.

The schedule is as follows:
Orthrus – 8:00am
Archierarchical Liturgy – 9:30am
Greater Blessing of Waters (Cathedral) – 11:30am
Procession to Spring Bayou – 12:15pm
Blessing of the Bayou and Casting of the Cross – 1:00pm

To read more about the history of  Epiphany in Tarpon Springs FL click here.

The young man who retrieves the cross is said to have good luck for the year ahead.

You might enjoy Tarpons Springs Art Festival here.

Toni Weidman GRI
Broker-associate
Sailwinds Realty, Trinity FL
727-237-0083

To search homes for sale, click here.

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Diving For The Cross 2016 Tarpon Springs FL

Diving For The Cross Tarpon Springs FL

Diving For The Cross Tarpon Springs FL Epiphany 109th Dive in Tarpon Springs FL for the cross will take place today at Spring Bayou in Tarpon Springs, FL. 20,000 plus people are expected to attend.

See 2018 schedule here.

Local young men will dive into the waters of Spring Bayou to obtain the white cross thrown in by Archbishop Demetrius, primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, will be presiding over the dive.The diving for the cross represents Christ’s baptism and the dove (released this year by Theadora Lialios) represents the Holy Spirit.

Diving For The Cross Tarpon Springs FL

Diving For The Cross Tarpon Springs FL will happen here at Spring Bayou.

A church service took place this morning at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, and at noon a parade will take the 50 or so boys aged 16-18 to the Bayou.  The young men wait for the cross to be thrown in, dive into the water, and one of them will retrieve it. Retrieval is said to bring a year of good luck.

A plaque is presented to the Tarpon Springs Police Department in honor of Officer Kondek who was killed in the line of duty recently. There will be a moment of silence before the dive.

Diving For The Cross Tarpon Springs FL. Expect road closures beginning at approximately 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday January 6th, 2016 for the Epiphany Celebration, detours will be till approximately 2:30 p.m.

The majority of vehicles  rerouted (detoured) as followed:

  • Northbound on Alt 19 (Pinellas Ave)  turns east onto Lemon St to Disston Ave.
  • Southbound on Alt 19 (Pinellas Ave)  turns east onto Pine St to Disston Ave.
  • Tarpon Ave westbound  detoured either north or south onto Disston Ave to Pine or Lemon to Alt 19.

Good luck to the participants!

See Craig Park in Tarpon Springs

This Florida Moment brought to you as a courtesy by  Toni Weidman.  Please do not call me for info on the event, contact the event organizers for further information.

Toni Weidman
Broker-associate
Search Homes for Sale, click here.
Sailwinds Realty, Trinity FL
727-237-0083

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Diving For The Cross Tarpon Springs FL