GARDEN GROVE, CA- The Indian Pharmacists Association of California celebrated their 26th Annual Trade Show and Banquet at The Hyatt Regency here on Sept 12. Pharmacists have increasingly been playing an important role in the community and the IPA was set up to give a common platform to these professionals...
The annual Gala was held at the beautifully set up ballroom with a sit down dinner arrangement for over 600 people. The evening began with the emcees introducing the event and inviting Manisha Patel to address the gathering.
Patel aptly welcomed all along with the legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar and her parents, who she said were seeing her on stage for the first time after her graduation from pharmacy school. She confessed her nervousness on the pharmacists now gaining a new status of becoming healthcare providers.
She also touched upon other important topics relevant to the fraternity and expressed pride in the growth of IPA as a body that facilitates a lot of new programs and also contributes to the community. She presented a check of $35,000 to the California Pharmacists Association and $ 5000 toward the California Pharmacist Political Action Committee.
IPA also gives away awards to the best students and the four recipients this year were Ashna Ramanlal, Purvi Vira, Amy Vanmali and Sai Upadhyayula. Of the speakers for the evening, Senator Jeff Stone from California who is also a pharmacist and “ a friend and lobbyist for the pharmacy fraternity’ spoke passionately narrating his story. He encouraged all to be part of the political process to initiate and bring about change.
The star of the evening was without a doubt- Sunil Gavaskar. “ I am indeed honored that even after twenty years of quitting the game, people are still kind and remember me” he quipped at the grand introduction he received from the emcee. He went on to talk about the comparison between the game of cricket and pharmacy. “ Both have changed over the years, the medicines and the cricket uniforms and the ball have all become colorful. In my days, all tablets were white and so was our uniform,” he said. In a conversation with India Journal, he patiently explained and expressed his positive feelings towards the game of cricket now in limited overs as in the IPL. “ IPL has brought a lot of good and positive changes to cricket! Today we see players from different countries play for the same franchise and that has brought about a whole shift in the attitudes and a sense of camaraderie between all. The animosity that existed between players on the field when we played different countries was evident and that has gone out of the window”. The evening also had some brilliant performances by the group Karmagraphy that presented some very classy moves in the cirque style of dance. The contemporary fused with Bollywood brought magic to the stage. Anjali Ray was another performer who sang lilting melodies of yesteryears such as “Aao Huzoor Tumko Sitaron Mein Le Chaloon”, to the famous “Ae Meri Zohra Jabeen,” from the Balraj Sahani starrer movie ‘Waqt’. A sit down dinner for hundreds of guests was no small feat. The food from Delhi Palace and the entire event managed by Ajita Chopra Events was a great combination. Amit Kotecha of 3D Sounds kept the momentum going with great music and enticing the audience on to the dance floor.
All in all, a very well laid out event that had all going home satisfied with good food and fun.