March 2011 News

Purim 2011

Purim in the Shtetl
This year’s JRCC Purim Banquet took on an old-school shtetl theme, complete with traditional gourmet shmultzy shtetl cuisine, rockin’ klezmer music, entertainment bu the Russian Bottle Dancers troupe, and costumes that would have made Tevye proud. Participants were transported back in time to the small rural village settings in which the majority of Jews lived in Eastern Europe before the turn of the (last) century). As a memento of the memorable evening, participants had their photos taken against a backdrop of the village of Anatevka, preserving their shtetl experience for posterity. Over 400 people attended the unique Purim in the Shtetl evening, including dozens of children who enjoyed their own special entertainment and activities.


Community Purim Parties
Over 1,500 people participated in Community Purim parties at JRCC Branches, with hundreds more participating in special parties for seniors at several seniors residences.

The JRCC @ Rockford held its annual Purim festival at the Fisherville Public School, featuring a juggling show and various art projects and activities for kids.

The JRCC West Thornhill hosted a party at its centre on Centre Street that featured music and the unique talents of Mark Verge, world champion balloon artist.

The JRCC Thornhill Woods held an evening of Purim fun and entertainment at the North Thornhill Community Centre.

The JRCC East Thornhill organized a Purim Wonderland event, featuring a magic show, rides, and crafts.

The JRCC S Richmond Hill Purim party at the CHAT North campus featuring an amazing show put on by a master illusionist and family portraits.

All the parties included Megillah readings and masquerades, delicious Purim refreshments, and gifts and prizes for the children.  

Almost 4,000 Mishloach Manot Distributed
Thanks to the extraordinary efforts of staff and volunteers, close to 4,000 festive Purim “Mishloach Manot” gift packages were delivered to homes in the JRCC West Thornhill, East Thornhil and S Richmond Hill areas. The community participation in delivering the gifts, and the festive atmosphere and joy it spreads, made it an enjoyable and meaningful community activity.

Purim Shpiel
The dedicated members of the community theatre troupe really outdid themselves this year with an unbelievable performance. Audience members could not contain their laughter, as the hilarious antics of the actors on stage became increasingly absurd as the evening progressed. Thankfully, there were a couple of intermissions so people could catch their breath and enjoy something to eat. Once again, we thank you for taking so much time and volunteering to help make Purim so much more enjoyable for the entire community.


Pre-Purim Hamantaschen Baking
The JRCC S Richmond Hill hosted a much requested and anticipated pre-Purim event in which families got together to bake Hamantaschen, the traditional Purim treat, in anticipation of Purim. Children also had the opportunity to decorate their own Purim masks, while parents looked on and socialized with one another. Photos

Rosh Chodesh Gatherings
Rosh Chodesh marks the beginning of the Jewish month, a unique holiday that is traditionally connected with Jewish women. Two separate events provided women with the opportunity to get into the Rosh Chodesh spirit in their respective communities.

The Women's Circle of S Richmond Hill and Maple hosted a Sunday afternoon brunch featuring sizzling soups and delicious salads. The topic of discussion was transformation, one of the central themes of Purim, and the black and white decor symbolized this theme. Special guest speaker Mrs. Jeni Traurig spoke of “Faith and Joy,” sharing her inspiring personal story, and how Judaism helped her deal with her personal challenges. Photos

The JRCC @ Rockford, West Thornhill and East Thornhill held a joint Rosh Chodesh Party focusing on increasing joy in honor of the month of Adar, with an evening of dancing featuring dance instructor Chana Baila taste. Participants also enjoyed an assortment of light refreshments and smoothies, making it an evening that was both spiritually and physically refreshing. For more information about Rosh Chodesh gatherings and other programs for women, visit or call 416.222.7105.