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Life and Arts

On the Town: Event honors art contest winners drawing on what makes their neighborhoods special

“Biggest Hat” prizes went to, from left, Lesley Irwin and Assistance League Glendale President Marci
Biggest Hat prizes went to, from left, Lesley Irwin and Assistance League Glendale President Marcie Haug. Haug’s sister, Joan Perkins, just missed a prize.
(Ruth Sowby Rands / Glendale News-Press)

“Say No to Graffiti” was the theme of the 26th annual “I Love My Neighborhood” poster contest. Several hundred proud parents, grandparents, teachers and students filled the seats in the Glendale Civic Auditorium recently for the event.

Glendale Clean & Beautiful was the primary sponsor of the contest, for which more than 10,000 applications poured in from students at Glendale Unified elementary schools, local private elementary and art schools. Out of those, 70 finalists were chosen. All were present at the award presentations.

Armine Gharpetian, a member of the Glendale Unified school board, has been chair of the poster contest the last three years. She congratulated the finalists and thanked principals, teachers and school secretaries for their support of the contest.

The program opened with music from Glendale High School’s “Chevy Knoll” Band, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance and introductions of dignitaries including Glendale Mayor Ara Najarian and City Council members Paula Devine and Gharpetian’s husband, Vartan. Also representing Glendale Unified was school board member Shant Sakakian.


Dr. Armine Gharpetian congratulates Alice Kim, 11, from Valley View Elementary School. She was the “I Love My Neighborhood” Poster Contest Grand Prize winner for the 4th-6th grades.
(Ruth Sowby Rands / Glendale News-Press)

Before the award presentations, a slide show of the artwork from the 2019 finalists was shown. Each work seemed to be more outstanding than the one before. As expected, loud applause from the audience followed the screening.

Sam Engel, retired administrator of the city of Glendale’s neighborhood services, made the announcement of the finalists. Engel is also a Glendale Clean & Beautiful board member.

Grand-prize winners were Alice Kim from Valley View Elementary School, Anabella Titizyan from Edison Elementary and Joshua Park from Mountain Elementary.


The program ended with a group photo of the poster artists and plenty of kid-friendly refreshments.

During this age of working mothers and professional event planners, a garden party tea and hat contest may seem old-fashioned. However, the Glendale Assistance League’s annual tea held recently was anything but.

Glendale Assistance League member and winner of “Most Beautiful Hat,” Judy Rezvani welcomes all to t
Glendale Assistance League member and winner of Most Beautiful Hat Judy Rezvani welcomes all to the League's annual Garden Party Tea.
(Ruth Sowby Rands / Glendale News-Press)

Marcie Haug, the league’s president, introduced the event’s movers and shakers — tea hostesses Karen Millman and Sylvia Kowal and parking chair Margaret Hammond.

Hammond, flowered hat and all, brooks no guff when it comes to club parking. Each car had to fit precisely between the lines. No hogging spaces for Hammond.

Some 60 members and guests lined up to serve themselves from a generous spread of sweets and savories. The cucumber-with-dill tea sandwiches went first.

After lunch, opportunity-prize winners were announced. Each attendee received three free opportunity tickets upon arrival. Hammond won the “Grand Marnier” basket. A gift-card tree filled with certificates for local restaurants went to guest Rosemarie Lossone.


Hat contest winners included Judy Rezvani for “Most Beautiful Hat,” and Marcie Haug and Lesley Irwin tied for “Biggest Hat.”

Ruth Sowby Rands may be reached at

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