2023 Reconfiguration of the Abstract Sculpture (Matt Conti photo)

Armenian Heritage Park Hosts Growing Number of Events

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BOSTON — Armenian Heritage Park on The Greenway continues to inspire a series of innovative programs and initiatives. Throughout the year, programs at the park are offered in collaboration with civic, arts, cultural and educational organizations.

On Saturday, September 9, for the first time, college students from greater Boston and beyond will be coming together for “Let’s Meet at the Park for College Students,” from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. for a gathering hosted by anoush’ella.

New this year are the Midday Labyrinth Walks held every Tuesday at 12:15 p.m. Led by Katrina Piehler, health and wellness coach, the weekly program includes a guided meditation walking the labyrinth. Offered in collaboration with the City of Boston, Boston Public Health Commission and the Greenway Conservancy, this weekly program continues until the end of October.

“The labyrinth has been a tool for relaxation for centuries,” said Dr. Darshan Mehta, medical director at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. “Walking meditation, supported by the Labyrinth, creates a space to be in the moment. It’s a practice of returning to a sense of balance and grounding, and one’s own inner strength. Walking the Labyrinth is an experience that can be shared across cultures and age groups and offers an opportunity for people to enjoy a common space. Labyrinths have existed in all the world’s cultures including the indigenous cultures of North America, virtually everywhere.”

Tea & Tranquillity, the first Program at the Park offered, is held weekly on Wednesdays at 4pm to meet and greet, walk the Labyrinth and enjoy refreshing ice tea and desserts. “Armenian Heritage Park is about creating the kind of bonds that make communities connect and flourish,” noted Laura Bilazarian Purutyan.

Celebrating What Unites Us!, the monthly series offered in collaboration with the City of Boston Age Strong Commission, is now in its fifth year. Each month the country of origin of many living in the City of Boston and beyond is highlighted. The series builds community, cross cultural understanding and common ground while promoting active, healthy and engaged living. “For the first time, I am meeting people from different parts of the city,” said Rita Pagliuca, also active with the Friends of Armenian Heritage Park.

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The Friends is an initiative of the Armenian Heritage Foundation, sponsor of the Park.

Armenian Heritage Park (Peter Vanderwalker photo)

On Thursday, September 21, at 2 pm, the Welcome Reception for New Citizens following their Naturalization Ceremony at Faneuil Hall will be held at the Park. Supported by the Park’s Noubar and Anna Afeyan Endowed Fund, the festive celebration features Dan Teager’s 12-piece Black Sea Salsa Band and luncheon, catered by anoush’ella. New citizens are warmly greeted with gifts from Boston’s arts, cultural and civic organizations including Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston Children’s Museum, New England Aquarium, Faneuil Hall Marketplace among others.

“Please join us to welcome the United States’ newest citizens to Boston at the Welcome Reception for New Citizens,” said Armine Afeyan, founding chair, Welcome Reception. “Since its opening in 2012, the Armenian Heritage Park has invited its visitors to interpret the ever-changing Abstract Sculpture, stroll the inner labyrinth or just take a break on a bench in the midst of a busy day. The Park and the experiences it creates are a gift, a thank-you from the Armenian-American community to those who have welcomed us, whether in the recent or distant past. The Park tells the story of the immigrant experience, highlighting Massachusetts’ historical leadership in welcoming new arrivals, including Armenians, to its shores. We have the opportunity to carry forward this welcoming legacy by celebrating our newest US citizens during this gathering at the Armenian Heritage Park. Fresh off of their citizenship ceremony at Faneuil Hall, new citizens and their families will make their way over to the Park to be met by food, drink, music and, the most important element of any celebration, an enthusiastic crowd. I hope you will continue the proud Boston tradition of welcoming newcomers with open arms by joining us on this special day.”

On Saturday, September 23, at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., Jean Appolon Expressions Dance Company will premiere an original dance inspired by the design and key features of Armenian Heritage Park. The rain date is September 24. The dance performances are a part of the Greenway Conservancy’s Momentum Dance Series, presented by Amazon. Appolon, founder and artistic director of Jean Appolon Expressions (JAE), chose the park to create this original piece.

“This collaboration means a lot to JAE because our work revolves around connecting different communities and cultures,” he shares. “Armenian Heritage Park is uniquely related to some of our most recent work.” JAE is a contemporary dance company “deeply rooted in Haitian-folkloric culture that celebrates, nurtures, and empowers a global community.” Momentum Dance Series on The Greenway culminates with a Dance Festival on Saturday, October 7. Jean Appolon Expressions will be performing at the Park at 1:30 p.m. on that day. For a complete listing of performances, please visit ArmenianHeritagePark.org/Calendar.

On Sunday, October 1 at 1pm, Meghri Dervartanian, Children’s Book author and illustrator, will share the story of her recently published, «Դէպի Արարատ Լեռ» Toward Mt. Ararat (2022). Meghri recently returned from Armenia where she and friends “hand-delivered backpacks and school supplies” to many young students. Refreshments are hosted by Eastern Lamejun Bakers.

For a complete listing of programs at the park held throughout the year beginning with the Annual Reconfiguration of the Abstract Sculpture in April, visit ArmenianHeritagePark.org/Calendar. All programs are free and open to the public and are building community, engaging all coming together on common ground.

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