Etz Fest 5775 was a success on many fronts! Not only did we make over $3,000, the teamwork and community building were priceless. The event brought many new folks into our home to experience our inclusive, dynamic and welcoming environment and represents our commitment to continuing Elijah’s Table, one of our core social action missions. We have many people to thank for creating and ensuring Etz Fest was a success. I can’t thank the core group enough for their hard work, commitment, great ideas and for owning and organizing key planning roles – Dina Michael Chaitowitz, Miriam Gitterman, Arlene Agosto de Kane, Leslie Kirshman, Bonnie Leshin, and Richard and Linda Rosenberg. Other dedicated Etz members helping to get this event off the ground were Mark Aronson, Marlene Chamrin, Karen Seidler, Renee Solomon and Deb Silverstein, and the Etz Hayim members who cleaned out their homes and provided a ton of inventory for our yard sale. There was so much volume, we even had to start turning people away at the end (and we apologize for that). And we are grateful to our neighbors, The Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration, who are always so supportive and loaned us many of their tables.
Thank you to our bakers who provided their delectable delights for sale – we had everything from B to Z - banana bread, blueberry bread, brownies, chocolate chip cookies, cupcakes, macaroons, mandelbrot, octopus cookies, zucchini bread and more. Our teens entertained our younger customers with face painting and balloon animals. Providing the atmosphere and topping off the day was a wonderful eclectic mix of music by our very own Orianna Kane on the harp, followed by Rabbi Peter and Amy Dattner-Levy playing some fun folksy music, and Larry Bleicher with his friend John who took us back to the 70s, 80s and 90s with their cover of pop and rock songs, accompanied by Irina Rubenshteyn on the keyboard.
Other key volunteers and/or bakers included Lisa Adams and her mom, Linda & Bob Aronson, Laura Aronson, Martha & Rachel Chazanoff, Jon, Jared and Orianna Kane, Janet, Joshua & Jacquelyn Cerniglia, Deb Eisner, Tamara & Michelle Freeman, Sam Kirshman, Stephanie Kuligowski, Barry Leshin, Bob & Sam Lynn, Linda McGrath, Marcy McWilliams, Jay Madnick, Ted, Michael and Brian Medrek, Kayla & Eliana Patterson, Nicki Renaud from HPM Insurance, Wesley Richards, David Riese, Lisa Rothenberg, Mike Schloss, Steve Soreff and Joan Vick many of whom spent the entire day at Etz Fest.
Our sponsors believed in the cause and provided much needed seed money – we are grateful to Enterprise Bank & Trust, HPM Insurance, Roy Aboody/Staffing Sense and Jill McAlpine of Berkshire Hathaway/Verani Realty. Many other local businesses contributed to the effort by donating gift cards and services to our raffle – Debra Eisner DPM, Kahn Landscaping, Canobie Lake Park, Arielle Welch/Nahar Yoga, Hartmann Learning Center, Daren’s Music, Tuscan Kitchen, Annie’s Hallmark, Yarn & Fiber, Left-Tees, Backmann Florist, Staples, Game Castle, Five Below, Barnes & Noble, Avandi’s Restaurant, Prosciutto’s Pizza, Moonlight Nails plus a beautiful wine basket donated by Bonnie & Barry Leshin. Special thanks to BJ’s Wholesale Club, Hannaford Supermarkets and Shaw’s who provided gift cards to help defray the cost of food for the event, and to Dunkin Donuts (Crystal Ave) and Brooklyn Bagel House for providing much needed early morning nourishment to our volunteers.
The event provided a place to shop, nosh, schmooze and connect. If you missed it, stay tuned. 5776 promises to bring a wide variety of FUN(d)raising, educational and spiritual events.
Laurie Medrek, Chair & Treasurer