BURBANK—The Armenian community of Burbank turned out with excitement on Sunday, February 21 for the unveiling of the new Youth Center, during an inaugural event, which kicked off the community’s effort to acquire the building and during which $780,000 was raised.
On the same day at 3:30 in the afternoon, Burbank and surrounding area community members had the opportunity to walk through the new facility at a cocktail reception hosted by the Burbank chapter of the Armenian Cultural Foundation.
Western Prelate, Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, was joined by community organizational representatives and members to tour the facility and see, first hand, the opportunities this facility will provide for the future growth of the community.
The tour was followed by a banquet at the nearby Arbat Restaurant, where guests received a complete accounting of ACF activities for the acquisition and future plans of the center.
Master of Ceremonies Mark Geragos welcomed the crowd and after a few words of encouragement handed the reins of the evening to Mistress of Ceremonies Lara Yeretsian, who welcomed the representatives of community organizations.
Yeretsian recognized Armenian Revolutionary Federation Central Committee chairman Avedik Izmirlian, Armenian Relief Society Central Executive chairwoman Vicky Marashlian, ARS Javakhk Fund president Haigoush Keghinian-Kohler, Homenetmen Regional Executive chairman Steve Artinian, Hamazkayin Regional Executive representative Ohan Ohanian, Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krekorian, Glendale Unified School District Board member and a candidate for the 43rd Assembly district Nayiri Nahabedian.
After the blessing prayer by Glendale’s St. Mary’s Armenian Church pastor Rev. Gomidas Totosian, a brief video chronicling the activities of the Burbank community and the outlook for the center was presented.
Youth Center committee member Vahag Thomassian, who is the architect for the building presented an overview of plans for the center construction and described the facilities that will be included in the 14,400-square foot building in the heart of Burbank.
Also speaking at the event were ARF Central Committee member Hovan Tashjian, Homenetmen Burbank Chapter representative Silvana Aboulian and Burbank ACF chairman Hrant Dostoumian, each of whom encouraged the community to look at the center as their new home and hope for the growth and strengthening of the community.
The program booklet that was provided to the banquet attendees listed the names of the donors who had initially contributed to the Center Fund. Missing from the list was the name of the $500,000 donor, who had asked to remain anonymous. One hundred community members donated $1,000 to the fund. The donations announced at the event included: $75,000 from Monarch Reality; $30,000 from Mr. and Mrs. Ara and Alin Ghaghlasarian; $25,000 from Mr. and Mrs. Harout and Vicky Marashlian; $20,000 from Mr. and Mrs. Papken and Kohar Ismailian; $10,000 from Mr. and Mrs. Berdj and Mary Karapetian; $5,000 from the ARS Araz chapter; $3,000 from the Tashdjian brothers and $2,500 from Boyadjian family.