GLENDALE–The Homenetmen Glendale Ararat chapter inaugurated its newly built gymnasium during a spectacular ceremony Sunday afternoon–when more than 1000 community members joined state and local officials during a program dedicated to the gymnasium.
Present at the gathering were State Sen. Adam Schiff–State Assemblyman Scott Wildman–LA County Board of Supervisors member Mike Antonovich–Greg Krikorian–representing Rep. James Rogan–Tevan Aroustamian representing Sherrif Lee Baca and Baidzar Tovmasian representing LA City Council woman Jackie Goldberg. All five Glendale city council members–Mayor Eileen Givens–Larry Zarian–Sheldon Baker–Ginger Bremberg and Dave Weaver–were present–as were newly-elected Glendale city council members Gus Gomez and Rafi Manoukian.
Western Prelate Bishop Moushegh Mardirossian led the list of community leaders present at the gathering. The Prelate was joined by Armenia’s Consul General to Los Angeles Armen Melkonian–Armenian Revolutionary Federation Central Committee member Arsen Danielian–Homenetmen Regional Executive chairman Manuel Marselian and other organizational dignitaries.
Following an impressive parade of flags by Ararat scouts–the Master of Ceremonies Simon Manucharian welcomed all to the gathering and explained the mission of the Homenetmen–highlighting that the current Ararat center and the newly constructed gymnasium were efforts to provide the Armenian American youth with a recreational facility to broaden their horizons.
Prelate Bishop Moushegh Mardirossian said the invocation and performed the blessing of the gymnasium.
"This is your second home," said Homenetmen Ararat chairman Armik Ebrahimian. "The future is only limited by your collective potential and the sky is the limit," expressed Ebrahimian in his address to the gathering.
Ebrahimian also recounted the countless hours of work and the dedicated service of Ararat members–who had been able to bring this mammoth project to fruition.
On behalf of the Homenetmen Regional Executive–Marselian commended the diligent work of the Glendale Ararat chapter in realizing the dream of the center and expressed hope that centers similar to this would spring up for all chapters of the region.
Proclamations were bestowed on the organization by Assemblyman Wildman–Rep. Rogan and other officials.
Ebrahimian then invited the Glendale City Council members to the stage and presented each of them with a plaque in appreciation of their support for the Ararat center project. He pointed to a wall plaque which adorned their names and commended their support–handing them a replica of the marker.
The Ararat executive also honored Viggen Davidian–Armond Gorgorian–Khoren Salmazian–Fred Khatchikian and Victor Martin for their input and leadership in the Ararat center project.
The finale of the program became the most memorable of the evening. Tens of young Homenetmen members took their athlete’s pledge–officiated by Ara Mahdessian and Talin Akopian–following which blue and white balloons which had covered the center of the gymnasium were released–revealing the Homenetmen emblem in the middle of the gymnasium. Another set of balloons was released revealing a large plaque adorned by donor names.