submitted by Peter Tsicalas on 23.05.2004
My wife, a true-blue Murgon girl, has this and the following Murgon photos in her inherited collection. She reckons Danny Vanarey was the first to bring Greek cooking to Murgon in 1921 when he took up one of the new suite of shops built by a bloke named Carrodus (is this Greek?). A couple of years later George Black arrived to give him a few pointers, taking over the business in 1927 when Danny decided his talents lay as a draper in the adjacent shop.
In 1932 they went into partnership to buy the freehold of the 4 shops and Carrodus’ private residence in the street behind - where George lived. (Danny had a separate large house and grounds nearby, which became Murgon’s favoured venue for garden parties over many years.)
George passed the cafe to his nephew Peter Lahanas in the late 1950s and established a newsagency in his shop next door, creating a Greek Quarter in Murgon’s CBD.
George and Danny retired in about 1970 and returned to Kythera, but Danny couldn’t handle the plumbing and came back shortly afterwards.
[George’s brother Jack had a café up the road at Goomeri (See photo at the State Library of QLD photo site.) Jack died in 1947 and his sons Jim and Manuel took over the business. His other sons, Zachary (Jack) and George, stayed with uncle George for a while before moving off to Casino to work for their uncle Tony Calopades, subsequently buying the business.]
Peter Lahanas sold up in about 1975, so ending Murgon’s Greek adventure, but his home made pineapple crush is still talked about. (Psst: Susan taught his daughter at Murgon Primary and many years later they serendipitously found themselves sharing a Uni class – ‘a lovely girl’ she has just called out. That’ll cost.)
submitted by John Mavromattis on 25.04.2007
uncle George's brother was John James Mavromatis not Jack,he opened up the Busy Bee Cafe in Goomeri in 1918 Jim Mavromatis was my father.My uncles George, Jack, Emmamuel ,plus my father Jim were all conscripted in 1940 , leaving my dear Aunty Lula and with only her father John Mavromatis to run the Busy Bee. Uncle George closed it until my father returned.
submitted by Daniel Vanarey on 12.04.2012
Danny Vanarey was my Great Great Uncle. We were under the impression that Danny did not return back to Australia after returning to Kythera, but this could be wrong so if anyone has more information on him I would love to hear it.
Teacher, journalist, poet and author, Sydney NSW Australia
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