Written by Herald Staff, email@example.com Saturday, 25 January 2014 00:00
The Young Israel of Plainview, in honor of the Jewish Holiday of Tu B’Shevat, hosted a community wide Kiddush, where eco-friendly refreshments were served and all were welcomed. The event, held after synagogue services on Saturday, Jan. 11 at 132 Southern Parkway in Plainview, was carefully planned for some time and created an air of excitement in the local community. Tu B’Shevat is translated literally as 15th of Shevat, and essentially signifies the New Year for the trees.
To honor the holiday, in a way commensurate with its historical origins, the synagogue planned the Kiddush with an environmental focus. All products served were from local vendors, thereby bypassing the wasted energy and inherent damage to the Earth caused by importing goods from other areas. The vegetarian offerings, selected in a way to highlight gifts from earth, were as diverse as they were eclectic, with a special spotlight on sustainability.
Tu B’Shevat is the day that marks the beginning of a “new year” for trees. This is the season in which the earliest-blooming trees in the Land of Israel emerge from their winter sleep and begin a new fruit-bearing cycle.
The day of Tu B’Shevat is traditionally marked by eating fruit, particularly from the kinds that are singled out by the Torah in its praise of the bounty of the Holy Land: grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives and dates.
Event organizer Tina Abraham reflected on the happening and said that it is a great way for people to learn about their impact on the environment.
“People often ask me how they themselves could possibly have any positive impact on the environment,” she said. “I always bring up one of my favorite gifts from nature; the shade from a majestic oak tree. If only one or two leaves were there to help, the result would be essentially nil. But if, collectively, all the leaves work together for the cause, the result is nothing short of spectacular.”
The official motto of the event was Educate, Demonstrate & Inspire. Atara Marzouk, who was involved with the planning of the occasion, hoped that the project would be a contagious one and other communities would follow suit.
“As happy as we are to put on this event, it would be that much more satisfying if other communities were motivated by our efforts and, accordingly, become themselves ‘green’ with envy,” said Marzouk.
The event was a wonderful success with approximately 200 participants. Several people remarked on the vegetarian offerings catered by Fairway Market, commenting that they were impressed by the array of foods with a vegetarian slant made available by the market.
“It was incredibly refreshing to see what a wide range of alternatives can be provided,” said one attendee.
Several members of the sisterhood also hand crafted centerpieces featuring fruits from Israel shaped into flowers. In addition to food, the Young Israel of Plainview Sisterhood distributed re-usable shopping bags bearing the synagogue logo which can be used to cut down on the use of plastic while shopping in local supermarkets.
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
Famous American painter Georgia O’Keeffe was the topic of discussion at the Plainview Old-Bethpage Public Library on Feb. 20.
Members of the audience were given an in-depth look into the life and artwork of O’Keeffe through a self-made and researched lecture and slideshow by art appraiser Louise Cella Caruso.
O’Keeffe lived for 98 years. Within her lifetime, she was granted the Medal of Arts by Ronald Regan, and in 1938, she was selected as one of the 12 most outstanding women of the previous 50 years. When she passed away she was accorded the honor of a first page obituary in the New York Times.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
In celebration of its tenth anniversary, the Kids of Distinction program is offering more scholarships and planning a festive gala that will look back on a decade of supporting our most civic-minded children. The Town of Oyster Bay and the Old Bethpage-based Kids Helping Kids by Kids Way, Inc., the sponsoring entities, are seeking nominations of local youngsters who are standouts in public service for the 2014 awards.
Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto, together with Kids Helping Kids co-founders Robert A.J. Eslick and Philip M. Eslick, kicked off the search for a new batch of “kids of distinction” at the end of February. Nominations are due by May 16. Winners will be recognized at a special ceremony held by the board of trustees on Tuesday, June 17 at 7 p.m. with a citation from the Town and a $2,000 scholarship from Kids Helping Kids.