GLENDALE–The new Glendale Armenian Community Center played host to more than 600 community leaders and members Sunday–during the official opening inauguration where more than $52,000 was raised for the center fund.
The Armenian Revolutionary Federation Glendale Aharonian Gomideh–the Armenian Relief Society Sepan chapter–the Hamazkayin Glendale chapter–the Homenetmen Ararat chapter–the Armenian Youth Federation Roupen chapter and the ARF Badanegan (junior) Shant and Zavarian chapters hosted the community during this reception gathering in their new center which is located at 721 South Glendale Ave.
The official ribbon cutting was performed by ARF Western US Central Committee chairman Vicken Hovsepian and Western Prelate Right Rev. Moushegh Mardirossian.
The Prelate was joined by representatives of the ARF Central Committee Western US–various local ARF gomidehs–the ARS–Homenetmen–Hamazkayin regional and central executives–as well as the Prelacy Executive Council and the Board of trustees of Glendale’s St. Mary’s Armenian Apostolic Church to welcome the addition of the new center to this crucial community.
During a brief program–Master of Ceremonies Vahe Yacoubian–Esq. explained that acquiring the center was a long and arduous process for the Aharonian Gomideh and its local affiliate organizations–adding–however–that through hard work–patience and dedication the Center Committee was able to narrow down its choices and acquire the building which houses the new center.
The program began with the singing of the American and Armenian National Anthems by members of the ARF Shant and Zavarian Badanegan (junior organization) chapters.
Yacoubian commended the Center Committee for their diligent work–during the past several weeks–in making the necessary renovations and changes to suit the needs of the organizations and the community.
Vahe Bozoian of the ARF Aharonian Gomideh–Eugenie Hovsepian of the ARS Sepan Chapter–Zareh Markarian of the Glendale Hamazkayin chapter–Vigen Davtian of the Homenetmen Ararat Chapter and Raffi Haroun of the AYF Roupen chapter–each took turns to welcome the community and underscore the importance of the center to their respective organizations and the Glendale community in general.
Closing remarks were made by Prelate Moushegh Mardirossian who–once again congratulated the Glendale community on the new center–and stated that the reality that three days following the 82nd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide a new center was being inaugurated was proof positive that the Armenian nation has survived all efforts of annihilation and that the Armenian people would persevere.
He added that the center served as a symbol of community unity and cooperation and through the activities of the center the Diaspora community would be further strengthened–thus enabling a more concerted effort in assisting the homeland.
The cultural program included performances by Albert Vartanian who played the Duduk with piano accompaniment by Armen Babayan. Houri Tashjian of the Hamazkayin "Zvartnots" Dance troupe presented a solo performance.
Sipan Parseghian performed several songs–while Arsineh Khayoyan played the violin. A moving recitation was presented by Talin Keshishian.
Following the cultural portion of the program–the attendees were escorted on a tour of the center facilities–with representatives of each organization explaining the brunt of their organizational activities.
The crowd then returned to the main hall–where Master of Ceremonies Stepan Kabadaian led the fundraising portion of the program.
Through large and small donations and the heartfelt outpouring of support from those gathered–who were exuberant and proud of the new community center–more than $52,000 was raised for the Armenian Center Fund.
The 11,500 square foot center houses the aforementioned organizations–as well as the offices of the Armenian National Committee Glendale Chapter–the Menk Television program–and will soon be home to the ARS Sepan chapter Saturday School and various art–music and literature workshops and classes affiliated with the Hamazkayin chapter.
The center also has conference facilities–reception areas–a large hall and a kitchen. Plans are underway for an activity center and a youth hall.
Individuals interested in contributing to the Center Fund or seeking more information about the center’s activities may contact the Armenian Cultural Foundation at (818) 243-5095.