Let's Have a Ball

Sports fans and museum lovers alike will have a lot to celebrate May 6 when the Oregon Jewish Museum’s annual gala provides a tantalizing taste of the museum’s summer sports exhibit.

“Let’s Have a Ball!” will be a distinct departure from the museum’s previous galas, which have featured art auctions. The event promises to be “a really lighthearted, fun evening in support of the museum and a chance to celebrate all the athletes and their families,” said OJM Director Judy Margles.

The theme was inspired by the museum’s upcoming exhibit of Oregon Jews in sports and the 100th anniversary of the Tualatin Country Club, which was founded in 1912 so Jewish golfers barred from area country clubs would have a place golf. Rabbi Jonah Wise, rabbi at Beth Israel from 1907 to 1926, was among those early golf enthusiasts. Margles said the museum has an oral history from a woman who remembers that one day at services, Rabbi Wise’s robes fell open and the congregation burst into laughter to see him wearing his golf knickers underneath.

The evening begins with cocktails and silent auction at 4:30 pm followed by dinner at 6:30 at the Tualatin Country Club, 9145 SW Tualatin Road, just 22 minutes south of downtown Portland and with plenty of free parking, according to gala chair Barbara Atlas.
NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman will be the emcee.

Atlas said the silent auction will feature plenty of sports-related items and packages, including Blazers tickets, ski passes, golf packages and even a gift basket for the “wounded athlete.” Non-athletes shouldn’t despair, she said, as the auction committee is also rounding up plenty of items for “sports of a different kind.” Wine and brew-pub aficionados will want to visit the “19th hole” for food, beer and wine packages. Other auction tables will cater to “Couch Potatoes” and feature “Mind Games.”

One item expected to draw fierce bidding is the Super Bowl Party at the Oregon Jewish Museum next February. The winning bidder and 50 friends will enjoy a game day party while they watch the 2013 Super Bowl on the big screen in the OJM theater.
Atlas said that with this year’s bigger venue they hope to have about 300 attendees.

Margles said funds raised at the gala will enable the museum to continue to offer high quality exhibits and programs.
Tickets are $100 per person. Invitations mailed in late March. Reservations also can be made online at www.ojm.org or by calling the museum at 503-226-3600.

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