News & Events

Friday, June 26, 2020

Shabbat Shalom,

I am honored to be writing this week’s Shabbat message as I end my time as President of the JCC Board of Directors. As I reflect on my service as a volunteer Officer of the Board, I know my contributions to the agency barely scratch the surface of repaying the JCC for all it has given to me, my family, and our community at large.

I was born 49 years ago and our family home was about 1/16th of a mile from the JCC. It was the stomping ground of my youth and a place of endless fun for me, my brothers and our friends. We went to nursery school, learned to swim, played video games in the teen lounge, and played floor hockey with Dave Rogachefsky. I spent summers at Camp Seneca Lake where I gained my independence, began to shape my Jewish identity and build a community of life-long friends.

I married Victoria, a fellow JCC girl, and we were thrilled to send our two children to the Wolk Children’s Center where they developed friends at pre-school, and my wife and I built new friendships with parents going through the same life experiences as we watched the next generation of the JCC blossom. When my father was declining due to Alzheimer’s, the JCC was a true blessing for him to attend programs and to sit and visit with friends. A perfect example of how the JCC serves us from “babies to bubbies”.

The JCC being closed these past months has reinforced just how much our community believes in and needs our treasured agency. I have seen first-hand how the loss of the JCC has affected so many of our families requiring safe and meaningful childcare. I have watched the disappointment on our children’s faces when we were forced to cancel their trip to Israel or their summer camp season. We watched the cancellations of our favorite programs, events and fitness classes, and as our older generation lost their daily interactions and activities that keep them mentally and physically healthy.

We can weather all of this for a few months, but the closure of the JCC during the pandemic drives home the critical obligation of our JCC community to do whatever it takes to ensure the viability of our Jewish Community Center for generations to come. I really mean this; whatever it takes, because failure on our watch would be a failure to do right by our previous and future generations. It is our duty to pay this blessing forward to our children and grandchildren. There is too much at stake for us to take our agency for granted. We are so thankful to those who have supported our Emergency Fund Campaign and those who have maintained memberships during the closure. Thank you! Please understand that we continue to face unparalleled strain to our agency resulting from the pandemic. Your continued support is so greatly appreciated.

As we reopen segments of our business carefully, deliberately and safely, I look forward to seeing you at the JCC. As we all reboot our JCC journeys together, our JCC will continue to be a place where all are welcome to join us…for generations to come.

Shabbat Shalom,

Daniel Goldstein
President of the JCC Board of Directors