When Mittleman Jewish Community Center Cultural Arts Manager Laurie Fendel and Congregation Neveh Shalom’s Program Director Jennifer Greenberg saw a need, they got together and took action. Again and again, senior members asked for activities tailored to them. Driving at night and heavy athletics were barriers to participation. Art, lectures and interesting discussions during the daytime were perfect.
“It’s called Everything for the Young at Heart,” says Laurie about the newsletter she and Jennifer put together. “We realized we didn’t have to recreate the wheel. Jewish organizations already have senior programming, so why not create a list?” Now, seniors learn about activities all over the city by looking in just one place.
Young at Heart partner organizations include the MJCC, Cedar Sinai Park, Congregation Beth Israel, Congregation Neveh Shalom, Congregation Shaarie Torah, GrapeVine, Havurah Shalom, Jewish Family & Child Service, Jewish Federation of Greater Portland, and the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education. Every three months, they send Laurie information on upcoming events seniors would enjoy. Laurie and Jennifer consolidate the listings into the Young at Heart newsletter. Organizations include links to it on their websites and newsletters and keep hard copies on easy-to-find tables in their lobbies.
Young at Heart events have included everything from a lecture on the origins of American Mah Jongg to George Gershwin concerts and Nosh and Drash study. Everyone is invited to Tuesday afternoon knitting at the MJCC. Many events are free, all welcome everyone.
“At its core, Young at Heart is an effort to consolidate all the amazing things that are senior-friendly in Portland into one source so that any senior looking for a connection to the Jewish community knows just where to go,” Jennifer says. “We have a core of fascinating folks over 70, and we want to make sure they have things to do. Young at Heart has sparked even more programming. A group of our seniors has launched a monthly 2 pm tea called Wondering Jews. On Nov. 17, author Philip Margolin is coming.”
Like all Young at Heart events, the Wondering Jews monthly tea at Congregation Neveh Shalom is open to everyone. Find the Young at Heart newsletter on tables at the MJCC and partner organizations, and on member newsletters and websites. Contact Laurie Fendel at 503-244-0111, firstname.lastname@example.org, for more information.
Everything YAH Sample Calendar
A Night in Shanghai
This multimedia presentation by author Nicole Mones details Jewish life in Shanghai before, during and after World War II. Mones’s novel, A Night in Shanghai, is one of the titles chosen for this year’s Portland Jewish Book Celebration: Many Stories, One Community. Choose a date!
• Tuesday, Nov. 3, 7 pm
The Mirabella at 3550 SW Bond Ave.
Free. Parking $3 at OHSU lot.
Sponsored by MJCC and Congregation Beth Israel
• Wednesday, Nov. 4, 6:30-7:45 pm
Hillsdale Library Pageturners, 1525 SW Sunset Blvd.
• Thursday, Nov. 5, 6:30-8 pm
Shute Branch of Hillsboro Library
775 SE 10th Ave., Hillsboro, 97123
Sunday, Nov. 8, 3 pm
Jewish Community Orchestra
Pieces by Beethoven, Bloch, Mussorgsky, Svensen and Sibelius.
$10 adults, $8 seniors, $5 students.
Children under 6 free. Tickets at the door. In partnership with the MJCC
Friday, Nov. 13, 6:30 pm
Kabbalat Shabbat and Dinner at Shaarie Torah
Join us for our monthly Kabbalat Shabbat service and delicious dinner on the second Friday of each month at Congregation Shaarie Torah, 920 NW 25th Ave.
Members: $18 adults, $15 child, $55 family; Nonmembers: $20 Adult, $18 child, $65 family RSVP: 503-226-6131
Sunday, Nov. 15, 10 am-4 pm
Hanukkah Gift and Book Fair
Craft and fine artists will share their treasures. Latke lunch at Cafe at the J at MJCC. Live music.
Book Store sponsored by OJMCHE
Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2 pm
This month author Philip Margolin will speak at this monthly tea
Congregation Neveh Shalom.
Tuesday, Nov. 17, 7 pm
Port of Last Resort: A film about Jews of Shanghai
In OJMCHE Theater. Public: $10, OJMCHE members: $8.
Sponsored by Institute of Judaic Studies, OJMCHE, Havurah Shalom.
Ongoing Groups – Drop-ins Welcome
Standard Goren-style Bridge
Wednesdays, 1 pm
Cafe at the J (MJCC), Free.
Hebrew for Lunch
Join Sylvia Frankel for a lively discussion in Hebrew. Purchase lunch or just enjoy the conversation. (Some conversational Hebrew required.)
Cafe at the J
Knit Together: Crafting Community
Tuesdays, 1-2 pm
Join a group of knitters in the MJCC lobby.