A fun social winter event since 2011 is our annual Bingo night fundraiser in January. It is a wonderful evening for adults with dinner and drinks. Throughout the evening, there are bingo games with prizes or cash after each game and a raffle with great prizes. We recently added a separate kids activity to make it easier for young families to also participate.
A favorite fall/winter activity for temple members is the annual weekend retreat to OSRUI in Oconomowoc, WI. This retreat is open to all temple members. It provides many wonderful opportunities.
• A weekend together for families, empty nesters and seniors to step outside their busy lives into a Jewish environment.
• A time to explore new ideas while relaxing in a natural camp setting.
• A time for adults to socialize and understand more about each other, and children to play and experience Judaism together.
• A time to reflect on our lives and to strengthen the bonds of our Temple Beth-El family.
• A time to learn from our clergy and from each other.
• A time to explore our spiritual side through worship and song.
• A variety of activities for all ages throughout the weekend.
During the spring, Mitzvah Day offers volunteer opportunities for all ages. “This will be a day that unites the entire Temple Beth-El family, young and the young at heart, in Tikkun Olam (Repair of the World),” said Rabbi Sidney Helbraun. “For our membership and interested members of the community, here is your opportunity to get involved, do a mitzvah, and see the beauty of your involvement for years to come.”
Activities have included decorating a flower pot and planting a plant for residents in CJE (Council for Jewish Elderly) housing facilities, creating and sending greeting cards to American and Israeli soldiers, baking cookies for the Northfield Food Pantry, and collecting eye glasses for the needy and creating holders to protect the glasses.
Run Walk for the Health of It
Since 2010, Temple Beth-El has an annual Run/Walk for the Health of It event. Usually held in September, this event features a 5K run and a 1 mile walk and includes a post event breakfast. This community-wide event draws families from throughout the North Shore area. In 2011, the event had over 200 participants. A portion of the proceeds goes to the Northbrook and Deerfield Food Pantry and also help support Temple Beth-El’s various social and charitable programs that extend predominantly throughout the Chicagoland area, but also globally.