8th Pan Homenetmen Games Kick Off


Aug 4, 2009

YEREVAN-The opening ceremonies of the 8th Pan-Homenetmen Games took
place Saturday at Republic Square, with a parade of athletes. After
the official opening and presentations, local entertainment and dance
groups entertained the crowds.

On July 31 a press conference was held at the Marriott Hotel. Speaking
on behalf of the organization was Homenetmen Central Executive member
Mihran Shimishirian, Organizing committee Chairperson Manuel Marselian
and Homenetmen HASK Chairperson Hratch Shmavonyan. Numerous media
outlets were present at the press conference.

Opening remarks were made by Hratch Shmavonyan who welcomed all those
present. He then related that in its 91 years of existence this would
the first time that the Pan Homenetmen Games would be held in the
Republic of Armenia. The prior seven Pan Homenetmen Games have been
held in the various different countries of the Diaspora.

This year’s tournament will include 5 different athletic events:
soccer, basketball, table tennis, swimming and chess. Shmavonyan noted
that 450 athletes, coaches, and representatives are expected to arrive
in the Republic of Armenia specifically to participate in these games.

Shmavonyan further thanked all the individuals, especially the Armenian
Football Federation, for aiding with the technical specifications
in organizing these games. He also added that the Armenian Olympic
Committee’s chair Gagik Dzaroukyan has presented Homenetmen with
a special trophy which will be handed to the region which is the
overall winner of the tournament.

Homenetmen’s Central Executive Committee member, Mihran Shimshirian,
spoke about the founding and mission of Homenetmen, Homenetmen -Hask’s
creation within the Republic of Armenia, and about Homenetmen’s
participation in the International Scout Movement. He noted that
Homenetmen has over 100 chapters and 25,000 members throughout the
world. Shimshirian stressed the importance of the 8th Pan Homenetmen
Games being held in the Republic of Armenia, especially for the
younger generations, who are given the opportunity to visit their
homeland and participate in these important games.

Manuel Marselian, Chairperson of the 8th Pan Homenetmen Games
Organizing Committee commented that alongside the athletes’
participation in the games, they will also partake in an educational
seminar, after which the participants will visit the "Dzidzernagapert"
Genocide Memorial to pay their respects to the martyrs of the Armenian
Genocide. The athletes will also be given the opportunity to visit
Lake Sevan. Finally, Marselian noted that the participants of the
Games include only those that are members of Homenetmen, an amateur
athletic and scouting organization.