ROYAL OAKS, Mich. — A perfect summer night and a rich collage of Armenian culture greeted guests as they arrived at the Royal Oak Farmers Market for the 9th Annual Armenia Fest, on July 16. Live Armenian folk and contemporary music from the Armenia Fest All-Star Band under the direction of Vaughn Masropian provided the perfect backdrop for this much anticipated annual festival.
The festival formally opened at 6 pm with introductions by MC Vaughn Masropian, co-chair David Terzibashian and Committee Member Corinne Khederian, followed by a presentation of flags. American and Armenian national anthems were led by the Armenia Fest Committee from the stage with the crowd. The event is designed to showcase Armenian culture and was met with rousing applause following the national anthems of Armenia and the US.
As always, a special highlight of the evening was a thrilling performance by the Hamazkayin Arax Dance Troupe comprised of local Armenian youth trained in the art of Armenian Folk Dance. Their enthusiasm, beautiful costuming and flawless dance routines brought the crowd to their feet.
Guests enjoyed authentic Armenian food prepared by Gary Reizian’s Uptown Deli, interesting vendor booths and dancing under the stars — a magical trip to Armenia via the Royal Oak Farmer’s Market. This year a special addition was the “Armenian Dance Contest” enjoyed by all – participants and audience. The winner was awarded dinner for two at our local Motor City Casino.
Kudos once again to the Armenian Fest 2016 Committee whom to date have presented nine successful Armenia Fests for metro Detroit American Armenians.
Operating under the auspices of the Knights of Vartan, Nareg Sharvashan Lodge, committee members are Edward Bedikian, Co-Chair, David Terzibashian, Co-Chair, Ray Boujoulian, Corinne Khederian, Vaughn Masropian, Hagop Alexanian, Paul Kulhanjian, Ken Khezarjian, Shirley Sarkisian, Angela Hagopian Snow, Madeline Thomasian and Pam Coultis. Proceeds from the Fest are earmarked for Armenian humanitarian projects.