Happenings/Faces of Oregon, September 2012

Maimonides Day School ready to grow up

During the week of Aug. 13 one of the buildings on the campus of Maimonides Jewish Day School  was lifted off its foundation to prepare for an expansion that will use a new “daylight lower level” of 1000 square feet, for classrooms, a multi-purpose room, and administrative and library space. When complete the building will be named the Abraham and Toby Lokshin Educational Pavilion. For more information, call Rabbi Moshe Wilhelm at 503-977-9947or Charles Schiffman at 503-201-4089.

MJCC hosts The Dovekeepers author Alice Hoffman Sept. 6

The Mittleman Jewish Community Center will host author Alice Hoffman on Sept. 6 for a reading and book signing of the recently released paperback version of her New York Times bestseller The Dovekeepers.

“We jumped at the chance to have her here. This work of fiction is so dramatically driven by strong female characters telling the compelling story of what happened at Masada in Israel. It appeals to many of us on a personal level and it should be fun to hear from Ms Hoffman in person about her research for the book,” says MJCC Operations Manager Jordana Levenick.

Set in ancient Israel, The Dovekeepers is based on the Romans’ siege of Masada in 70 CE when 900 Jews held out against the Romans for months. According to the ancient historian Josephus, all but two women and five children perished. Hoffman retells this story from the point of view of four extraordinary women, each of whom comes to Masada with secrets to keep. The book signing and reading will be held on Sept. 6 at 7 pm in the Stern Family Ballroom at the MJCC, located at 6651 SW Capitol Highway in Portland. The MJCC will have books available for sale.

RSVPs are requested, www.oregonjcc.org/rsvp

Chagall for Children opens in Portland Sept. 23 

Artists come in all sizes at Chagall for Children, the new exhibit at the Portland Children’s Museum. The Chagall exhibit will be at the museum from Sept. 23, 2012, to Jan. 21, 2013. Arranged like a miniature art gallery, this one-of-a-kind exhibit features 14 reproductions of famed Jewish artist Marc Chagall’s most famous paintings.  Each painting is paired with an audio recording about its history and content, and an interactive component as imaginative as the paintings themselves. Chagall for Children is a place where children ages 3-10 can not only play with the art, but the art will play back. The Museum’s Artists’ Paint Studio will encourage children to explore color, composition, light and texture by creating masterpieces of their own. Chagall’s vivid artwork combined with unique, playful, hands-on activities makes for the most fun you’ve ever had at an art gallery.

Portland Children’s Museum is located at 4015 SW Canyon Road. Hours are Tuesday-Sunday 9 am-5 pm, Thursday 9 am-8 pm, closed Mondays except for Portland Public School holidays. For more information, visit www.portlandcm.org.

Portland Jewish Academy launches drive for new donors

Portland Jewish Academy has launched an all-out search for NEW donors to enable the school to earn up to $50,000 in matching funds.

PEJE (Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education) is offering a day school match program to encourage new, non-parent donors to Jewish day schools.   Funded by Avi Chai and Kohelet Foundation, PEJE will match donations 1:2 donations that are: $10,000 or more; five times the highest previous annual giving by that donor (to PJA or other Jewish Day School); non-parent (those eligible include grandparents, alumni, alumni parents and community members); from an individual or married couple (not a group of donors but family foundations are OK); and designated for operations.

Gifts must be pledged between Aug. 1 and Jan. 15, 2013.  They must be paid in full by May 15, 2013 to be matched.  Schools can earn up to $50,000 from the match if they reach the maximum of $100,000 in eligible gifts. 

If you are interested in participating and/or can identify some potential match donors, please contact either Lisa Katon at lkaton@pjaproud.org, Merrill Hendin at m2hendin@pjaproud.org or Lisa Horowitz at lhorowitz@pjaproud.org as soon as possible.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to expand our school’s donor base – and bring in some matching funds from a national foundation,” according to Lisa Horowitz, executive director of PJA and Mittleman Jewish Community Center.

Cedar Sinai Park employees join Bike Commute Challenge

Cedar Sinai Park employees are joining the Bicycle Transportation Alliance Bike Commute Challenge for the first time. According to the BTA website, the Challenge is a “friendly competition—workplace against workplace—to see who can bike to work more during the month of September.”

Spearheading CSP’s participation is Admissions/Social Services Coordinator Ali Hartstein. In her role as Captain of CSP Team Haverim, Hartstein said, “Through the summer I have seen five Cedar Sinai Park employees, including myself, bike to work. Several people have told me they’d love to do it, too, so I’m hoping the Challenge will provide the needed boost.”

The organization supports the effort. According to CSP Chief Program Officer Kimberly Fuson, “Participation in the Bike Commute Challenge promotes the health and wellness of our employees. Biking is a fun, environmentally friendly way to commute. I live a mile and a half away, so I’ll bike whenever I can.”

Hartstein added she would love it if other Jewish organizations got involved in the effort. She said, “I’d love to see how we do in comparison to our sister agencies. I invite all Jewish organizations to join us in the friendly competition.”

Sign up for BTA Bike Commute Challenge at bikecommutechallenge.com. Individuals sign up and join their company’s team; the first person to sign up is the team captain.

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