(Hollywood Press Corps) — Sunday, April 29, 2018 — The West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park & Mortuary, and KIRN 670 AM SoCalPersian.com held a celebration of life for Persian singer Haideh. Haideh was an iconic Iranian singer of classical and pop music. She was an ambassador to Iran. To many people she is timeless. She is considered one of the most popular singers of the 20th century Iran. Haideh rose to fame and captured the hearts of her nation when she began to sing with dramatic flair and a huge dynamic range in the 1970s. Like many of her countrymen, the Iranian Revolution of 1979 forced her into exile and she moved to Los Angles. When Haideh was 48 years old, she passed away from a heart attack in January of 1990. This memorial was an event to celebrate her life. Haideh’s albums are still bestsellers and her songs are played on Iranain television stations. Her amazing talent continues to enchant generations of people all over the world.
There were so many Iranian celebrities and politicians from all over Los Angeles in attendance. This event was hosted by Farangis MC & Gharib Afshar. Farangis MC began with an introduction. Stan Scott from Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park & Mortuary spoke about the Dignity Memorial. West Wood Village Memorial Park is such an amazing place. It’s the resting place of so many luminaries. People like Jack Lemmon, Hugh Hefner, Marylin Monroe, Don Knots, Bob Krane and many of Hollywood’s legends are interred here.
Next to speak was Roozbeh Farahnipour from the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. Roozbeh is such an amazing person. Known for being a leader in the movement for Iranian cultural resistance and the chairman of the Marz-e Por Gohar resistance movement which advocates the overfthrow of Iran’s Islamic government, Roozbeh connects so many Los Angeles business people. His position at the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and running his restaurant, Delphi Greek, on Westwood boulevard, keeps Roozbeh very busy.
Next up to speak was city councilman Paul Coretz from the City of Los Angeles’ Fifth District. Paul is such a great public speaker and always has something interesting and funny to say. Haidehs’s son, Keyvan Nouri, spoke about Haideh’s life. A few of the speakers spoke in Farasi, so was is difficlut to understand them, but I think most people were speaking on their connection to Haideh and how special she was. Parviz Garib Afshar spoke a lot in farsis but in the end he said a few words in english about Haideh.
The next speaker was Hassan Sattar. Mr Sattar also sang two soulful songs. Sattar is known as an Iranian pop star who also sings classical. He became famous in Iran before the Iranian revolution of 1978. He had become a Phalavi Royal Family court singer up until the policitcal uprising in the 1970s. It was a real treat to hear Sattar perform. The crowd was trying to push into the tiny chapel to take a video on their iphones.
Next to speak at the Memorial for Haideh was the former mayor of Beverly Hills, Jimmy Delshad. He spoke about his experience as an Iraninan in Los Angeles and how he wanted to become mayor to make a change. He also spoke about Haideh and how amazing she was in her singing. Next up was Westwood Communtity Council Chairman Steve Sann. Afghan songwiter, Farid Zoland, spoke about his colaboration with Hiadeh. Communtity College Representative Scott Svonlin spoke about his commitment to provide one free year of community college to Los Angeles resident high school students. Mr. Svonlin said that he supports former President Obama’s commitment to provide free communtiy college to anyone. He continued to say that Mayor Eric Garcetti and Govenor Jerry Brown were commited to a project that gives students one year of community college for free. So, together, students can have two years of free community college.
Roozbeh said a few words in closing about Haideh and her amazing life. Haideh’s son, Keyvan Nouri, also said a few words in closing. Haideh’s music still inspires many Iranian and Farsis speaking people.
Landmark Restaurant Delphi Greek wowed friends, customers, government officials and celebrities with a huge bash. The party featured an awards ceremony, authentic Greek music, and the traditional gourmet Greek cuisine that has made the restaurant famous. The restaurant was honored by federal, state and local officials.
On October 18, 2015, Delphi Greek Restaurant celebrated 30 years in the same location. The restaurant was honored with an impressive nine commendations from government officials. The ceremony was MC’d by Chairman of the Westwood Community Council Steve Sann and awards were presented to owner and operator Roozbeh Farahanipour by representatives of Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office, Congressman Ted Lieu’s office, California State Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones’ office, County Accessor Jeffery Prang’s office, City Councilman Paul Koretz’soffice and state Senator Ben Allen’s office. Assemblyman Sebastian Ridley-Thomas upon presenting Farahanipour his special accommodation from the State Assembly, proclaimed he and his family would like to be experiencing Delphi’s fine cuisine, “for another thirty years, at least!”
Also in attendance were West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce Board members Steve Little and Elham Yaghoubian, who is also a noted author, human rights activist and handbag designer.
State Senator Joel Anderson presented Farahanipour with not one but two separate awards; one for “unyielding commitment to providing quality food, outstanding service, and job opportunities to our community;” and one to Roozbeh himself for his community leadership, “Special recognition of your commitment to bettering our community as president of West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and program chair of the Westwood Rotary Club, your unyielding dedication to advocating for the freedom of the Iranian people, and your devotion to empowering others towards civic engagement through leading by example.” For his part, the restaurant’s owner was overcome by the moment. With a huge grin, and tears in his eyes, Farahanipour said, “I never expected this kind of outpouring of support. When I immigrated to the US, I wanted to be sure that I could add value and be of service to the community at large.”
This in spite of the fact that the restaurant had already been honored several times by government agencies, no fewer than 17 times by the prestigious Zagat survey, and Farahanipour’s wife, noted pastry chef Rana Pourarab has won multiple awards for her amazing cheesecakes and traditional Greek desserts including a Certificate of Recognition from the City of Los Angeles for her work as a Signature Pastry Chef.
Celebrities in attendance to help commemorate the evening included filmmaker Armin Nasseri (Seeking Valentina), Actor Scott Engrotti (Scorpion), actresses Vida Ghaffari (the Mindy Project), Jessica Landon (Drake and Josh), Kristin West (Seeking Valentina), Mo Kelly (Hijos), Elise Muller (Baghead), Vikki Lizzi (The Bay) andPatricia Kara (Deal or No Deal), who was especially proud to be there sharing her Greek heritage, along with board members of several local Chambers of Commerce, Rotary Club, BNI, Friends of the Westwood Library, the Westwood Community Council, Local Homeowners Association and the Westwood Neighborhood Council.
The anniversary event also featured a blue carpet and ribbon cutting ceremony. The “Hellenic Blue” ribbon was sheared by Farahanipour, and Pourarab, along with the former Mayor of Beverly Hills, the Honorable Jimmy Delshad, Assemblyman Ridley-Thomas, State Senator Anderson, Captain Tina Nieto, Commanding Officer for the West Los Angeles LAPD, Deputy Mayor of Los Angeles, the Honorable Daniel Tamm and Greek Consul General Gregory Karahalios who said “he knew the secret to the restaurant’s longevity.” “Even though we are in a city that always expands and changes, we need something that is stable,” Karahalios said. “This restaurant has maintained the color of Greece.” The Council General said Delphi Greek is one of the few places in Southern California to reflect the Hellenic tradition and culture.
Patrons Charles Winkler and Ann Tinz said they found the restaurant by accident 30 years ago and have been coming back ever since. The Winkler-Tinz’s were among the very first patrons of the restaurant when it opened, and said it was the food, ambiance and service that kept them coming back year after year. Tinz said she feels like it’s a little trip to Greece every time the couple visits the restaurant.
Of course, the real star of the party was the outstanding food. Guests were treated to authentic Greek menu items: Greek Caviar, Lamb Chops, Chicken Souvlaki, Broiled Shrimp, Dolma (Stuffed Grape Leaves), Spanakopita (Greek spinach pie), Tiropitakia (3 cheese Greek Pie), and a wide assortment of Greek beers and wines.
Celebrity Chef (Nia Luna) and food blogger Nicole Guzman’s take on the evening: “The food was delicious across the board. From the lamb chops to the shrimp…from the dolmas to the chicken. I can see why this place has withstood the test of time! How rare it is in this day and age that a place like this can endure. You know they must be doing something right! I highly recommend this place if you’re ever in the area.”
Delphi Greek is located at 1383 Westwood Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90024 and is open 7 days a week. Please call 310 478 2900 for reservations or delivery or order on line at www.Delphigreek.com. Find them on their official pages at facebook.com/ADelphigreek and @DelphiGreek on Twitter.
The Westwood branch public library celebrated its 10-year anniversary on May 9th . They saluted a decade of learning, literacy, community and fun. There was a special appearance by Harry Potter and a musical performance for the award-winning Bruin Harmony, UCLA’s only all-male A Cappella ensemble. There was also a visit with LAFD firefighters from Westwood Village’s fire station 37, as wells as special presentations with Los Angeles City Councilmember Paul Koretz, Steve Sann,Chairman of Westwood Community Council, City Librarian John Szabo, President of the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce Roozbeh Farahanipour, Board member of the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce Elham Yaghoubian, and other dignitaries.
There was also an amazing anniversary cake by Cake and Art Bakery decorated with classic books such as Hamlet, To Kill a Mockingbird, and the Shahnameh as a respectful nod to all the Iranian-Americans who visit the library. There were also tasty cupcakes courtesy of Farahanipour’s award-winning pastry chef Rana Pourarab, with each cupcake decorated with a fondant mini book. Never has reading been so tasty!
There was also a concert by the UCLA Gluck Fellows Brass Septet Concert as well as one from soprano Susanna Lucarelli. Teens enjoyed custom airbrush tattoos and kids enjoyed magic tricks from Tony Daniels as well as Thor’s reptile family safari.
“I’m so excited as Board Member of the Friends of Westwood Library to be celebrating this branch’s 10 year anniversary. We do have largest selection of Persian books in all of the Los Angeles area Public Libraries and excited to have the Shahnameh in our celebration cake as one of main books in our community. I hope this year we will see more participation from the thriving Iranian- American community,” said Farahanipour.
“It’s an amazing feeling to be a part of this great celebration as a board member of the Chamber of Commerce and especially as an author, “ added Yaghoubian, who is also the director of networking and outreach for the Authors of the Westwood Library Committee.