AYF New Jersey ‘Arsen’ Chapter Wins 2021 Junior Track and Field Games


By 2021 Central Athletics Council

The AYF-YOARF Mid-Atlantic and New England (JAG) Junior Athletic Games returned this weekend after a two-year hiatus. What is traditionally an annual event for AYF juniors, the games were canceled in 2019 due to the EEA and again in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year, the Central Athletic Council (CAC) were determined to make the highly anticipated return of the Junior Athletic Games a weekend to remember.

The AYF juniors and seniors arrived at Camp Haiastan in Franklin, Mass. Friday night. The games started early Saturday morning at the Milford High School Community Pool. The juniors and seniors were then transported to East Greenwich High School for the opening ceremonies and track and field events.

Boys at the pool, JAG 2021

The concession stands were open all day. Participants representing nine AYF chapters enjoyed walking through the opening ceremonies. A total of 57 athletes had registered to compete this year.

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An electric night filled with music and dancing awaited the athletes back at Camp Haiastan after the games. The evening started with a fantastic chicken and pilaf dinner prepared by the host of the “Aram” chapter of Worcester. After dinner, the juniors and seniors gathered under the pavilion for the Saturday night dance featuring Datev Gevorkian on the oud and Alek Surenian on the dumbeg.

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The following results were announced at the ball.

Top scorers:

Young Boys – Matt Janian (North Andover) 15 points
Young Boys – Zareh Mikaelian (Worcester) 15 points
Younger Girls – Maral Kouchakdjian (West Middlesex County) 15 points
Older Boys – Sebu Najarian (Greater Boston) 15 points
Older boys – Alex Agabap (New Jersey) 15 points
Older Girls – Arabella English (New Jersey) 10 points
Older Girls – Zabella Aslanian (New Jersey) 10 points

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Chapter Sportsmanship Award: Chapter “Aram” from Worcester

Final classification of the chapter:

New Jersey: 104 points
Boston: 58 points
Worcester: 41 points
Providence: 33 points
North of Andover: 28 points
West Middlesex County: 27 points
Washington, DC: 21 points
Philadelphia: 20 points
New-York: 5 points

The weekend was organized by the ACC and hosted in collaboration with the “Aram” chapter of Worcester. Parents and alumni in Worcester were a great help in planning breakfast and dinner, as well as setting up and operating the concession stand throughout the day.

Over 20 senior members signed up, volunteering their time to attend the event as advisers, kitchen staff, race timekeepers and positive role models for junior athletes. Senior members and alumni of the Providence section helped prepare athletics for the events.

CAOT would like to thank everyone who attended this year’s JAG. The weekend was a great success! We hope to see you again next year!

Members of the Central Athletics Council 2021:

Hagop Taraksian, president, chapter Providence “Varantian”
Aren Dakessian, Manhattan chapter “Moush”
Daron Hamparian, Chapter “Nejdeh” of Greater Boston
Ema Bandazian, New Jersey “Arsen” Chapter
Haig Sarajian, Washington DC “Ani” section
Knar Topouzian, chapter “Kopernik Tandourjian” from Detroit
Masis Mardirosyan, “Sebouh” chapter of Philadelphia

Pictured from left to right: Aren Dakessian, CAC President Hagop Taraksian, Haig Sarajian, Daron Hamparian, Ema Bandazian


Founded in 1933, the Armenian Youth Federation is an international non-profit youth organization of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF). The AYF-YOARF Eastern United States is based on five pillars that guide its core activities and initiatives: Educational, Hai Tahd, Social, Athletic and Cultural. The AYF also promotes a fraternal attitude of respect for ideas and individuals among its members. Unity and cooperation are essential traits that enable members of the organization to work together to achieve the goals of AYF.


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