Ararat Center News
Find out what we've been up to since we purchased this magnificent facility in 2004.

ARARAT CENTER MORTGAGE BURNED

GREENVILLE, NY – The year has started on a high note for the Ararat Center as the mortgage for this Diocesan-owned facility has been burned. On January 9, the Ararat Center Board of Directors presented their final payment to Len & Jyl DeGiovine, the former facility owners who held the mortgage. It was a celebratory day for all involved as it took a cohesive force to reach this point in less than five years of purchasing this upstate New York facility.

The Board of Directors initiated a Challenge Campaign back in May of 2007 where individual Board members would match $1 for any $2 donated towards meeting this mortgage obligation. Hundreds of supporters rose to the occasion by making contributions towards this Challenge, thus allowing for this major accomplishment.

“It took a lot of dedicated people, primarily the Ararat Center Board members, to work towards this goal of owning this property outright, all while maintaining and upgrading the facility for the benefit of our youth and so many others who have enjoyed the Ararat Center since its purchase,” shared Stephen Hovnanian, Chairman of the Ararat Center Board of Directors.

Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern) presented the symbolic two by four-foot check to the DeGiovines saying, “You helped us to realize our dream through your beautiful property. I thank you for your involvement in making it happen.”

The Ararat Center was purchased from the DeGiovine family in 2004 by the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern). This site now serves as the permanent home for St. Vartan Camp. By having this facility, the camp has been able to expand to six weeks of programming. The Ararat Center has also become the facility of choice for several other Armenian Church affiliated and non-affiliated organizations.

The Diocesan Council joined the group for the presentation of the final mortgage payment. Oscar Tatosian, Diocesan Council Chairman, offered his appreciation, “We thank the Ararat Center Board for giving our youth a home.”

Following the check presentation, Len DeGiovine offered kind words during the champagne toast, “To an honorable cause by honorable people.” Both Len & Jyl DeGiovine will stay on as the Facility Managers for the Ararat Center.

“We have established a good working relationship with the DeGiovines and I know they've come to respect us and the Armenian Church greatly. Therefore we look forward to their continued expertise in running this facility,” stated Mr. Hovnanian.

The Ararat Center Board of Directors will waste no time in looking to secure the future of this facility by working to build a $1.5 million dollar endowment fund so that the interest generated will help offset the general operating expenses in the years to come.

“By immediately turning our attention to now building a substantial endowment fund, we are taking the next logical step to ensure this facility will be around for generations to come,” shared Karnig Durgarian, treasurer of the Ararat Center Board of Directors.