CHICAGO  It’s a story that stood the test of time: Homer’s Odyssey.

At the National Hellenic Museum, it was a two-day Homer-A-Thon in partnership with the University of Illinois Chicago. Students, museum board members, and neighbors came together to read three-minute-long sections from Homer’s poem aloud.

“The Odyssey contains themes that are still relevant today,” National Hellenic Museum Executive Director  Marianne Kountoures said. “It speaks to the human condition and to all of our experiences. There is overcoming trauma, the effects of war, self doubt and there’s also the enduring bonds of love.”

The museum’s executive director also highlighted the idea of Nostos.

“Meaning a return and this pull toward home,” Kountoures said.

Also noted was the importance of celebrating the cultural connections across continents, which is a crucial part of the museum’s work.

“At the museum, our mission is to share Greek history, culture, and art from ancient times to the modern Greek American,” Kountoures said. “We celebrate the Greek American story and we want to share those stories not only with Greek Americans but with all communities.”

The National Hellenic gearing up for a return to pre-pandemic museum hours with a grand reopening in early fall. In the meantime – they’re hosting a series of special events to welcome community members back. Then up next: partnering with the Illinois Institute of Technology for a forum focused on the influence of Greek architecture.