Skoufas Square is located in the center of Arta, southeast of Kilkis square and opposite the imposing church of Panagia Parigoritissa, the work of Nikiforos A, the Despot of Epirus. It occupies a building block defined by Skoufa, Orlandos, and Georgios Pachis streets.
Like the homonymous street and the famous Music and literature Association, “”O Skoufas,”” the square is named after Nikolaos Skoufas, one of the three founders of the Filiki Eteria (or Society of Friends), along with Emmanuel Xanthos and Athanasios Tsakalov. Born in Kompoti in Arta in 1779, he received the name “”Skoufas”” (skoufos means hat in Greek) as a nickname from the people of Arta themselves, due to his involvement in the manufacture of hats, during his first business steps in Arta.
Skoufa Square was designed by the great, Zakynthian architect Dionysis Zivas (1928-2018) and was built by Andrea Siamantas, a contractor. Garyfallia building, which today is a heritage of the “”Skoufas”” Association, lies to its northeast, while the tables of the coffee house “”en Arti”” fill its eastern side.
Having crisp lines, smooth surfaces, and limestone interrupted by green flower beds and terraces dominating, the space is organized on three levels that communicate with stairs.
In collaboration with the Technical Service and the Department of Electricity, the department of Green of the Municipality of Arta carried out, in 2012 landscaping and upgrading works on the lower part of Skoufa Square. As part of the works, they restored the original plan of the square, which various interventions had altered. In addition, they proceeded with the electric lighting, the construction of kennels, the installation of the underground irrigation system, and the planting of ornamental plants.
Its location and size make it one of the city’s most recognizable and busy squares. Built into the city’s center, with its shops, kiosks, bougatsa (cream pie) shop, and cafes, it has always had the character of a working-class square with an almost absent middle class. The area was a hangout place of the popular poet of Arta, Apostolis Karapanos (1899-1955).
Today, various events are organized in the square, such as youth festivals, modern and traditional music stages, Christmas fairy tales, motorcycle exhibitions, etc.