Thousands Gather in Little Armenia to Celebrate Armenian Independence and Culture

HOLLYWOOD–The second Annual Armenian Independence Day Festival became a huge success last Sunday, May 27 as crowds gathered to celebrate the first independence of the Armenian nation. The festivities began at 10:00 a.m. on Hollywood Boulevard in Little Armenia, where the street was shut down between Vermont and Alexandria. Council President Eric Garcetti and California State Assemblymembers Paul Krekorian (D-Glendale), Anthony Portantino (D-Pasadena) and Mike Feuer (D-Los Angeles), and Deputy Consul General of Armenia, Haroutioun Kojoyan attended the Annual Festival to celebrate the Armenian independence and culture alongside with the Armenian community. Ongoing entertainment, variety of cultural displays, unique vendors and the aroma of ethnic food lured passers by to participate in the festivities. Well-known singers and performers such as Ara Shahbazian, Adiss, Anna Armenakyan, Maxim, Sahag Sisslian, Ara Sahagian, Antoine Bezdjian, Sako, VISA, Jivan Gasparyan Jr., the Knar Band, Armenian folk dancers from Alex Pilbos, and the Simon Dance Academy entertained the crowd throughout the day. The kid’s zone, which included a petting zoo, pony rides, a bouncer and rock climbing mountain, along with various carnival games, amused thousands of children. Organizations who participated in the festival include the Armenian Relief Society, Homenetmen Armenian General Athletic Union and Scouts, United Human Rights Council, Armenian National Committee of America %u213 Western Region, the Armenian Youth Federation %u213 Western Region, Hamazkayin Cultural and Educational Society, and AYF Camp. The 2007 festival was sponsored by the Armenian Cultural Foundation and cosponsored by Los Angeles City Council President Eric Garcetti, California State Assemblymember Paul Krekorian (D-Glendale), Assemblymember Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles), and Assemblymember Mike Feuer (D-Los Angeles). Assemblymembers Paul Krekorian, Mike Feuer and Kevin De Leon also participated in the festival by holding a coordinated mobile office during festival hours. Closet World and St. Mary’s Armenian Apostolic Church were also cosponsors of the event. “We would like to thank our sponsors, vendors, entertainers and many volunteers who made this year’s festival another success. We look forward to celebrating this joyous occasion with the community again next year,” said Festival Committee member Sevag Garabetian. The Annual Armenian Independence Day Festival is hosted by the Armenian Cultural Foundation and organized by the Armenian Independence Day Festival Committee. The Festival takes place in celebration of Armenia’s first independence of 1918 and thousands of years of Armenian history and culture. After 600 years of Ottoman Turkish oppression followed by the Armenian Genocide, the first independence of the Armenian was declared on May 28, 1918. The second republic of Armenia was born on September 21, 1991.

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