March 19, 2018 - An event dedicated to the celebration of Novruz holiday (Vernal Equinox) was held on March 17, 2018 near Los Angeles. Hosted by the California Azerbaijan Friendship Association (CAFA), the celebration was attended by over 250 guests, including many members of the Azerbaijani community as well as the state and city officials of California, Consuls General of various foreign countries, prominent scientists, media representatives, as well as leaders of Turkish, Jewish, Pakistani, Iranian, Korean, and Latino communities.
CAFA’s Executive Director Kimiya Mammadova welcomed the guests and talked about the Novruz holiday, its traditions and symbols. She noted that Novruz holiday has very ancient roots in Azerbaijan and for centuries our people have been celebrating this holiday with much love and admiration. Expressing the importance of celebrating this beautiful holiday in California, Mrs. Mammadova thanked every community member who rendered their support to making this celebration so successful.
Then the Consul General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles Nasimi Aghayev was invited to the floor. In his remarks, the Consul General noted that the Novruz holiday is not just about the beginning of spring and awakening of the nature. The diplomat emphasized that this holiday is also a driving force of peace, friendship and good neighborly relations. Aghayev also noted the importance of unity among all Azerbaijanis living in such a crucial state as California.
Speaking afterwards, the California State Senator Josh Newman, the Los Angeles City Human Relations Commissioner Dr. Amna Qazi and the Chairman of the Los Angeles Interfaith Council Bishop Juan Carlos Mendez congratulated the Azerbaijani community. They expressed their satisfaction with the celebration of Novruz in California and being part of this beautiful ceremony.
The event continued with performance of Azerbaijani music and a dinner at which various dishes of Azerbaijani cuisine were presented. The performance of Azerbaijani dances by American dancer Robyn Friend as well as by American students of the University of California, Irvine was received with much applause and admiration by the audience.