28th Navasartian Games End with Celebrations

MORE THAN 15,000 ATTEND 28TH ANNUAL HOMENETMEN NAVASARTIAN CLOSING CEREMONIES

LOS ANGELES–The 28th annual Homenetmen Navasartian Games came to a close on Sunday–July 6 with a special ceremony at LA Valley College athletic field–marking the end of all activities–as well as the Honorary Chairmanship of Mr. and Mrs. Sarkis and Susan Kitsinian.

Thousands began to enter the field beginning at 3PM for the closing ceremonies–while Philadelphia’s "Aravot" band provided entertainment–followed by a dynamic martial arts exhibition by the Hai Katch Do martial arts center.

The brass ensemble of the Homenetmen Western Region added to the spirit–entering the field with their renditions of Armenian national melodies.

Invited guests present included California Assemblywoman Carol Liu and Assemblyman Lloyd Levine–Duarte Mayor George Chapjian–Glendale City Councilmembers Dave Weaver–Rafi Moukian and Bob Yousefian–Glendale Community College Board of Trustees President Dr. Armine G. Hacopian–and member Anita Quinonez Gabrielian–Glendale Unified School District Board of Education Vice President Gregory Krikorian–Burbank Unified School District Board of Education member Paul Kerkorian–as well as representatives of various political officials.

The closing ceremonies officially began with the arrival of Honorary Chairpersons Sarkis and Susan Kitsinian–Archbishop Mousegh Mardirossian–Homenetmen Central Executive member Manuel Marselian and Mher Tavitian–ARF Central Committee representative Hovig Saliba–Homenetmen Regional Executive member Viken Tavtian and 2003 Exemplary Homenetmen member Vartkes Alahaydoian–accompanied by members of the scout council donning Homenetmen uniforms.

Receiving the mark to begin the ceremonies from the Honorary Chairperson–Regional Scoutmaster Hrair Boyadjian instructed the Homenetmen flag guards to enter the field with 28 Armenian flags–while the brass ensemble played the national anthems of Armenia–the US and Canada. Meanwhile the flags of the US–Armenia–Canada–Mountainous Karabagh–California–Homenetmen and the 28th Navasartian Games were raised–accompanied by great cheers from the crowd.

Homenetmen TV announcer Patil Aposhian–Homenetmen member Nora Tchaparian–as well as long-time Homenetmen member Garbis Shekherdemian addressed the crowd.

Master of Ceremonies Stepan Boyadjian invited those present to stand for a moment of silence in remembrance of deceased Homenetmen members–specifically recently killed members Harout Gourounlian–Tadeh Badalian and Vahe Parseghian.

Speaking on behalf of the large Homenetmen family of the Western US–Boyadjian noted that in what began 28 years ago as a few athletic events–the Navasartian athletic competitions now span two months and include four days of closing festivities–succeeding in creating a little Armenia with thousands of Armenia’s gathered to enjoy food and especially Armenian music.

In his address–Homenetmen Regional Executive chairman Viken Tavtian conveyed that the activities of the Homenetmen Western region are not limited to the Navasartian Games. "This volunteer organization has structure and manpower; as a school succeeds in doing and perhaps even more effectively–Homenetmen’shapes the political and national awareness of future generations."

In delivering the Homenetmen Central Executive’s message–member Mher Tavitian stated–"Homenetmen is the sole organization with members entering its ran’s based on the ideals of unity to express the will of the Armenian people. . . Homenetmen has never been a self-serving organization; the devotion of its youth is the devotion to all Armenia’s; its victories–those of all Armenia’s to help strengthen our homeland and nation. . ."

In congratulating the participants of the 28th Navasartian Games–Chairpersons Mrs. and Mrs. Kitsinian presented the following message: "Congratulation for your efforts dear Homenetmen’sisters and brothers. May the victories of Navasartian be eternal–and soon take place in our free and independent Armenia."

Vartkes Alahaydoian–the recipient of Exemplary Homenetmen Member of 2003 award was invited to the stage to be presented the award for his devotion to the organization. He was congratulated by the Homenetmen Regional Executive and the Honorary Chairman of the Games for his undying commitment to the organization.

Archbishop Mardirossian then delivered his address and blessing–and noted that the year 2003 not only celebrates the 28th anniversary of the Navasartian Games–but also the 85th anniversary of the founding of Homenetmen–as well as the independence of Armenia. "Founded in the Armenian Diaspora–Homenetmen’symbolized our homeland decades on end for Armenian youth. It succeeded in preserving–in our athletes and scouts– love toward our homeland–and the love and respect for our church and Armenian identity.

Harout Pamboukjian performed to the delight of those gathered–adding to the already joyous spirit of the ceremonies.

The Homenetmen Regional Executive then recognized two dedicated athletes Vazken Kalaydian and Sako Sakaian–who having been star soccer players in Lebanon–now awing their spectators–but also–and more importantly bring honor to the Homenetmen name with their dignity during Homenetmen and international competitions.

After two months of rigorous competition–the much awaited Navasartian award ceremonies were held. The following are the results:

TENNIS

1. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

2. Homenetmen Santa Clara ANI

3. Homenetmen MASSIS and COLORADO Chapters

PING-PONG

1. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

2. Homenetmen Orange County SARDARABAD

3. Homenetmen Crescenta Valley SHANT

SWIMMING

1. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

2. Homenetmen San Fernando Valley MASSIS

3. Homenetmen Santa Clara ANI

TRACK AND FIELD

1. Homenetmen San Fernando Valley MASSIS

2. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

3. Homenetmen Santa Clara ANI

VOLLEYBALL

1. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

2. Homenetmen Santa Clara ANI

3. Homenetmen Orange County SARDARABAD

SOCCER

1. Homenetmen Crescenta Valley SHANT

2. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

3. Homenetmen San Fernando Valley MASSIS and LOS ANGELES Chapters

BASKETBALL

1. Homenetmen Glendale ARARAT

2. Homenetmen LOS ANGELES Chapters

3. Homenetmen Crescenta Valley SHANT

ACHIEVEMENT TROPHY

Homenetmen COLORODO Chapters

Marching to the music of the Homenetmen wind ensemble–nineteen chapters with their scouts–athletes–executives and committees took turns circling the track waiving to thousands of supporters.

After the Navasartian flag was presented to the Honorary Chairman–the closing ceremonies concluded with the Homenetmen anthem.

The celebration continued until midnight at the Navasartian festival.

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