By Brad Finkelstein
Temple Beth El of Rockaway Park continued celebrating the 100th anniversary of its founding by reaffirming its commitment to families with a fun barbecue on Sunday, Sept. 4. This event follows on the heels of an earlier brunch to honor the long history and importance of the synagogue in the community. Rabbi Matt Carl is currently the spiritual leader of the congregation.
The many children who attended the event, some of whom are third, or fourth generation Temple Beth El members, were totally enthralled by the antics, games, and magic show presented by Clowns.com. Face painting, balloon animals, and cotton candy rounded out the performance and left the kids smiling.
The barbecue was ably catered by Mr. Omelette, who served up plenty of hot dogs, hamburgers, and chicken along with a variety of salads, watermelon, and cookies. Great food, superb weather, and plenty of kids activities made for a wonderful family event for all ages!
Many thanks to Sherry Goltz, Sharon Gabriel, Dava Begun, and Debra Rosenhaus for volunteering to organize the event and to Harrison Rosenhaus, Zachary Finkelstein, and Jeremy Finkelstein for helping to set things up.
Temple Beth El has a long history of supporting family life and the education of Jewish youths. The synagogue is, in fact, a pioneer in Jewish education as its Robert Gordis Day School was the first Solomon Schechter Day School in the nation. Over the years, Temple Beth El has offered a free afterschool Jewish education program, as well as Shabbat and holiday services for the children of the community.
Family Purim carnivals, Chanukah celebrations, and model Passover seders helped teach children about Jewish customs and observances in a fun way. The youth of Temple Beth El learned the importance of community service and helping others by visiting local nursing homes.