$124,000 Raised for Construction of New Gym Floor
BY KATIA KARAGEUZIAN
From the elegant setting, the red carpet, the flashing of cameras, the gourmet food, to the surprises, heartfelt speeches and the fantastic entertainment, Massis chapter’s September 7th, 2013 “Road to Success” banquet at the CBS Radford Studios will be seared in the minds of its attendees for a long time to come! The chapter’s Banquet Committee had been working on perfecting every single detail of the much anticipated celebration for the past several months. The result was a nonstop crowd pleasing event with a fundraising drive that matched any televised telethon!
The Massis “Road to Success” fundraising campaign was launched on the heel of the recent purchase of a center in the city of Canoga Park. The campaign has been designed to fund the construction involved as well as the acquired loan. It offers several donation options in square footage and room naming sponsorships. The rooms in the design of the building have already been sponsored. The proceeds from the banquet will be allocated towards the construction of the gym’s floor. Fundraising efforts will be ongoing, as the chapter plans on eventually getting all 10,000 square feet of the center sponsored.
Maral Chobanian, the chairlady of the banquet committee, welcomed the guests who included representatives from the Homenetmen Western USA Region Executive committee, the Rosdom and Arshavir Shiragian Gomidehs, Holy Martyrs Apostolic Church and Hamazkayin Baruyr Sevag Chapter, as well as the evening’s guests of honor, Massis Gym Benefactors, Jirair and Serpoug Sarkissian.
A breathtaking operatic rendition of the twin American and Armenian national anthems was performed by singing sensation Elie Berberian who had flown with his band from Canada to entertain the evening’s guests.
Rev. Father Razmig Khatchadourian blessed the evening’s meal, and offered his congratulatory words to the chapter. Hamazkayin’s Niari dance group descended onto the dance floor next and delighted the guests with the performance of two lively Armenian folkloric dances.
In her speech, Massis Executive Committee Chairwoman, Katia Karageuzian, reflected upon the great role Homenetmen has played and continues to play in our “people’s mission of hayabahbanoum”. She added that our communities “should capitalize and expand upon the opportunities that Homenetmen offers” in reaching out to our youth, especially those who do not attend Armenian schools, “to counteract the many assimilation problems that challenge them”. She also thanked the attendees for their “decision to invest in our youth who are the undeniable foundation onto which we aspire to build a healthy and prosperous nation.”
Massis Finance committee member and the evening’s energetic Master of Ceremonies, Edwin Davidian, took the evening by storm as he led the crowd through the interactive fundraising which relied on electronic visual displays that kept the audience abreast of the progress toward the evening’s total fundraising goal.
Dynamic performances by singer Elie Berberian kept the attendees on their feet, dancing and cheering the night away, as he led them from popular to moving ARF traditional songs. Jirair Sarkissian offered his heartfelt remarks on the occasion, and wished the chapter a seamless progress toward the official grand opening of the new center.
At midnight, one final donor closed the remaining gap of $10,100 and the evening’s fundraising goal of $124,000 was reached! This phenomenal achievement was received by loud cheers, applause and hugs among friends. Truly, September 7th, 2013, proved to be a magical evening in every sense of the word, and a great triumph for Massis Chapter.
The chapter thanks its numerous generous donors who made this great success possible.
Additionally, it extends many thanks to event sponsors: Neptune Productions, HiQ Cabinets, Vicky’s Flowers, Karoun Dairies, Vrej Pastry, Super King Markets, and Whole Food Stores.
Words of praise and gratitude are also offered to the hard working members of the Massis Banquet Committee: Maral Chobanian, Silvia Gabrielian, Zohrab Bedrossian, Raffi Ishkhanian, Vicky Panossian and Executive Committee Representative Betty Makerian; as well as the evening’s photographer Dikran Ounjian. To view all pictures from the event, please visit Massis.org or “Homenetmen Massis Chapter” on Facebook.