The 15th Annual Bronx Jewish Community Council Dreidel Ball was “a minor miracle in itself,” shared Niti Minkove, director of volunteers, Bronx Jewish Community Council. Through the efforts of almost 300 volunteers, more than 50 Bronx seniors came together at the Conservative Synagogue/Adath Israel in Riverdale to celebrate Chanukah on December 18.
In partnership with UJA-Federation of New York and UJA-Federation in Westchester, the Dreidel Ball was a fun and festive happening, with student volunteers from the Leffell School, Shaarei Tikvah, the Harrison JCC, SAR Academy and SAR High School combining efforts with adult volunteers, distributing delicious and useful party favors to each guest. Individual place settings were carefully set up by students from the Conservative Synagogue of Riverdale while UJA-Federation of New York JTeens, with the help of visiting Israeli soldiers, filled mason jars with fixings for vegetable soup and placed one at each setting. The SAR HS Championship 10th-grade women’s basketball team, along with additional volunteers from the Harrison JCC, served as the accommodating wait staff. Decorations and centerpieces were created by young artists from the Leffel Middle School and the SAR preschool.
Adult volunteers managed the kitchen, serving a dinner of chicken, vegetables, latkes and salad, followed by luscious chocolate cake and jelly donuts for dessert. Hot and cold drinks were provided. Volunteer entertainers Charlotte Filler and Jeremias Anatonette provided an evening of music. As each guest left the party, they were given full-size, boxed S & S cheesecakes, generously donated by the David Klienhandler family, in memory of their mother and grandmother. Seniors were driven to and from the event by drivers from Red Oak Transportation, which graciously donated its services.
Minkove is grateful to the many student and adult volunteers who made this event a glorious holiday celebration for the isolated senior clients of the Bronx Jewish Community Council.
By Yvette Finkelstein