Novruz celebrations 2015

One of the most beloved and colorful holidays in Azerbaijan. Meaning “new day” in Persian, Novruz marks the arrival of spring and the beginning of the year for people in Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Iran and other common cultural heritage countries. Novruz has been celebrated for at least 3,000 years and is rooted in the ancient traditions of the Zoroastrian belief system.

Novruz gathered many Azerbaijanis and friends of Azerbaijan from Turkey, Holland, the United States and many more in Texas.

Novruz Concert at the Goldberg B’nai B’rith Senior Citizens Housing in Houston, TX

Novruz celebrations started at the Goldberg B’nai B’rith Senior Citizens Housing Committee of ‪‎Houston on March 18th 2015.

HBSCA and the Azerbaijan Center along with its volunteers and talented Azerbaijani artists, Kamiyar, singer and Nargiz Jeffus, pianist, organized a small concert for the seniors who lived and worked in Azerbaijan and others now residents of the Goldberg B’nai B’rith Senior Citizens Housing Committee of ‪‎Houston to celebrate Novruz with the community while savoring baklavas.

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 Annual Novruz Gala in Houston, TX

On March 20th, and to continue and end Novruz celebrations, the annual Novruz Gala was organized by HBSCA and the Azerbaijan Center with the help of its volunteers and partners. The traditional holiday celebrating the New Year and the beginning of spring was held at Café Caspian in Houston, TX.

The event gathered community members and friends of Azerbaijan from Turkey, the United States, Holland and more who enjoyed traditional foods.

DJVolkano and singer Kamiyar, on the rhythm of Azerbaijani music, made all the guests dance and celebrate together while sharing the spirit of Novruz.

HBSCA and the Azerbaijan Center would like to extend its sincere thanks to all the persons who made this event possible: our amazing volunteers for their help with planning and logistics, our sponsor SOCAR, our contributor Envyhandmade Inc. for the jewelry gifts that delighted the guests, our singer Kamiyar for an amazing performance along with Çağatay Atmaca, DJ Volkano for his great playlists, our photographer Shahram Faghihloo, and last, but not least, all our attendees that made this event a success by sharing their joyful spirit on this occasion. As we always say:

Our community is only as strong as the people who are in it.

Thank you for celebrating Novruz with us all!

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Novruz celebration in Dallas, TX

The Azeri community in Dallas also organized a small gathering on the occasion of Novruz. The Azerbaijan Center sends its best wishes to the whole Azeri community and friends of Azerbaijan in Texas for Novruz.


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2nd Annual Amateur Rapid Chess Tournament in memory of Vugar Gashimov returns to Houston, TX in 2015!

On March 15th, 2015, the 2nd Annual Amateur Rapid Chess Tournament, organized by  the Azerbaijan Center in cooperation with Houston Azerbaijanis Association, Houston-Baku Sister City Association and made possible thanks to the generous donation of Mr. Yusif Aleskerov from the U.S. Azeris Network, was held this year at Center64 Chess Club in Houston, TX.

This year, the event went international with players originally from at least 5 different countries and as always we were happy to welcome all ages: our youngest player was 8 years old! Supportive family members, representatives of Azerbaijani diaspora as well as local chess fans were among the attendees that came to spend their Sunday afternoon at Center64 for this 2nd annual tournament.

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Mrs. Irada Akhoundova, CEO of the Azerbaijan Center and Mr. Ilgar Azizov from the Houston-Azerbaijanis Association greeted the guests and introduced the country of Azerbaijan where Chess Grandmaster Vugar Gashimov was born and to whom the event was dedicated.

Ruled by the 5 rounds Swiss System, the tournament lasted about three hours. The tension was palpable and everyone was focused.

And the winners are…

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The winner of the tournament Ifeanyi O. aka Shaolin Monk received the winning Cup. Second place was awarded to Jeffrey V. Both winners received a cash prize. Our youngest player Rajni N. and third place ranked Aslan G. received a certificate of participation.


On behalf of all the organizers, the Azerbaijan Center would like to extend its sincere thanks to our sponsor Yusif Aleskerov from the U.S. Azeris Network, to Center64 and its volunteers and to all the participants for making this event successful.



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Celebrating all the women of the world!

This year again, Houston-Baku Sister City Association and the Azerbaijan Center celebrated Women’s Day the international way!

Celebrations started at Audi Central Houston on March 5th 2015 with an event organized by the International Russian-Speaking Professionals in collaboration with the Azerbaijan Center and the support of Kawai Pianos. The event featured talented musicians for a music night “The Center Of The Universe”. Alina Uddin, Ukrainian pianist, teacher, chamber perfor;er and accompanist along with Oleg Sulyga, violinist of the Houston Grand Opera Orchestra and the Mercury Baroque, made a great tribute to all women of the world with their performance.

On March 7th, 2015, HBSCA and the Azerbaijan Center was happy to welcome members of the American Turkish Association of Houston and all the guests for another evening of sharing and of music featuring Azerbaijani pianist and community member, Tarana Taylor from the Houston Ballet.

Many thanks to all our partners, sponsors and attendees for their support and for celebrating with us.

 “The strength of a woman can carry the weight of the world.” – Sarah Pezdek Smith

Woman 's Day celebration