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January 24, 2014     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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January 24, 2014

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Editorials ................................ 4A Op-Ed ..................................... 5A Calendar ................................. 6A Synagogue Directory ............... 7A B'nai Mitzvah .......................... 8A Scene Around ......................... 9A Classified ................................ 2B Congregation Ohev Shalom invites the community to attend its gala, 'Sun- day Night Live!,' a new improv designed by professionals that will entertain everyone. The gala, to be held Feb. 9, beginning at 5 p.m., will be an evening of gourmet hors d'oeuvres, dinner and desserts by Arthurs, as well as live and silent auctions. Items to be auctioned will include When the Jewish Com- munity Center's Jack & Lee Rosen Southwest Orlando campus celebrated its grand opening in fall 2009, leaders of the project envisioned a day when its sparkling new halls would be bustling with activ- ity. After five years of building community, strengthening family life, and promoting Jewish values, JCC leaders are celebrating its early success. "When I first started, the JCC's Rosen campus was liter- ally an open field and dirt, plus preschool portables we had been using since 1994 on the property of the Southwest Or- lando Jewish Congregation," a new 2014 Hyundai Elantra GS, a Vespa scooter, and a trip for two to Russia. In addition to the dinner and auc- tions there will be live entertainment ranging from mime to opera, and a "super finale." Proceeds from this enterta[i~i[ig eve- ning will help provide camp scholarships for needy children, programs that help said Bonnie Rayman, who began as the center's branch director in early 2009. "I am incredibly proud of Southwest Orlando's Jewish community whenever I pause to consider our rapid growth." That growth of the JCC's Rosen campus has been rapid on multiple fronts, in its first year: the campus had just over 200 member households; in 2013, the campus reached nearly 500. the Early Childhood Learning Center was home to 89 children; this past school year, the number reached 132. Many of the classrooms now have waiting lists. adults and seniors connect to the Jewish community, and more. "We know you'll have a fun evening and enjoy that "menche" feeling that comes from helping others," said Nina Oppenheim, chairwoman of the event. For more information, email chair- . woman Nina Oppenheim at ropp@mpi- or call Meryl at the Ohev Shalom Office at 407-298-4650. e years The Jewish community's singers, dancers and per- formers are getting ready for Choices on Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. at the Rosen Plaza. The Women's Division event will showcase a Broadway-style revue showcasing Jewish life in Central Florida and will highlight the work of this community's agencies. The show is being pro- duced by Tim Evanicki, owner of StarvingArtist Stu- dios. His extensive resume as a performer, show writer, music director and director spans the globe. He has writ- ten shows that have enjoyed successful runs in London, Paris, Montreal, as well as regional tours in both the United States and Canada. He is a graduate of the Juilliard School and as a performer, Evanicki has shared the stage with such names as Patti LuPone and Kristin Chenoweth, and has performed for presidents and world dignitaries. According to Evanicki, "It has been an incred- ible experience working on the show and it has been eye-opening to learn the wonderful, rich history of Jewish life in Central Florida as well as the web of agen- cies and programs, with the Tim Evanicki, producer of the Choices revue. Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando at the heart of it all. It has been my pleasure to work with this group of women with an unparalleled commitment to improving life for all people through philanthropy and good will. Bravo to them. It is my job to make sure we put together a show that will do justice to the wonderful work being done. I believe we have." To register to attend Choices, please call the Jewish Federation office at 407-645-5933 or visit www. O The Jewish Community Center's Jack & Lee Rosen South- west Orlando campus celebrates its five-year anniversary. 34,000 to 54,000-square-feet. The additionswill include early childhood and after school classroom additions, a teen center, an active gaming room, music rooms, and a state-of- the-art auditorium/theater. "We know that strong JCCs of similarly sized JCCs. This was measured by respondents' answers to the degree towhich they have developed a broader perspective of the Jewj,sh com- munity, a greater appreciation for Jewish values, and a deeper connection to their Jewish NEW YORK (JTA)--The Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) and MyJewishLearn- ing (MJL) announced their intention to merge the two organizations. The combinationwill bring together two strong, growing and respected nonprofit media organizations dedicated to providing readers with news, information, content and in- teraction on Judaism and Jew- ish topics, without political bias or denominational bent. the director of operations of MyJewishLearning, will be the new organization's chief operating officer. The new organization is committed to maintaining and growing the two organizations' existing brands, which include JTA, Kveller, MJL, and Jewniverse, as well as to creating new brands and content to serve the diverse Jewish commu- nity. JTA and MJL plan to execute a definitive merger agreement later this year, at just eight children were createstrongJewish commu- identity. The planned merger willwhichpointadditionaldetails enrolled in its new J Univer- nities, and the JCC's Rosen Theywere also ranked first allow the two organizations about the new organization sity after school program; campus has transformed in the country on measure- to increase revenues and willbe announced. the number has increased to Southwest Orlando's Jewish mentsoftheirabilitytocreate grow readership throughFounded in 1917, JTA is an 48 today, community," said Scott Rich- friendships amongst their the formation of unified and internationalnewsagencythat In addition to the growth man, JCC's board president members, as well as how well expanded audience develop- for nearly a century has been since the first year: and a charter member of the their staff engaged members ment, business development covering developments ira- In its first season of Camp Rosen campus. "The JCC has in informal conversations, and fundraising teams. With pacting Jews and Jewish corn- J, the campus hosted 175 played such an important role "Theonlythingthatmakes more resources and greater munities in North America, campers; last summer that inmyfamily'sJewishjourney, me more excited about how reach, the combined entity Israel and countries around i number had grown to 405. and I know that this campus far this Jewish community will be able to expand and theworld.TheJTAwebsitenow The monthly Saturday has also led to so many more has come is how far it still is improve content and services features an archive of more NightOutchildren'sprogram members of our community going to go," Rayman said. "If to existing clients, readers than 250,000 JTA articles dat- o) ~ has grown 150 percent over embarkingonJewishjourneys our growth trends continue, and communities, and create ingbackto 1923, searchable by i the last two years, averaging of their own." the future of our JCC is very new content and distribution keyword or date. It is a unique 50 children per month. In fact, the research has bright." mechanisms for engagingresource, particularlyforschol- Attendance at programs shown that the JCC's Rosen To learn more about thenew readers, arsandstudents, providingeasy for children who are out of campus is a standout in in- JCC s Jack&LeeRosenSouth- The organizations' boards access to real-time historical school for closures or winter/ spiring Jewish journeys. Re- west Orlando campus, contact have spent several months < ~ spring breaks has doubled in search conducted by the JCC Bonnie Rayman, branch exploring the merger and are Merge on page 14A Z size since2010. Association in 2011-2012 director, at 407-387-2744 signinganon-bindingletterof ~ To accommodate this re-showed that the JCC s Rosen or atBonnieR@orlandojcc, intent to move forward. JTA's markable growth, the JCC campus was rated number- org, or visit www. Eden, will be CEO and execu- of its property over the next greeofitsJewishimpact, when, organization; Meredith Lewis,