To the Columbus Jewish Community:
When the Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus was founded in 1913, the underlying goal was to “relate the members of the organizations meeting within its walls to each other, to their families, to the community and, finally, to humanity…” endeavoring to “develop a responsibility to family, faith and nation.”
The 2016 JCC Maccabi Games is a modern reflection of our work to fulfill this lofty goal. Today we celebrate your generosity, hospitality and involvement in providing support for the continuation of those enduring values, doing T’sedakah and instilling these goals in our youth and families from this generation to the next and building bridges to other Jewish communities.
Thanks to each of you, the hundreds of volunteers, all the host families, and especially our sponsors, the JCC Maccabi Games were a tremendous success. Together, we worked for over two years planning and gathering the right the team. We raised funds from over 200 donors. Our community rallied behind this effort 110%.
The week arrived suddenly as the countdown clock in the JCC Main Lobby struck zero. We proudly donned our multi colored t-shirts and welcomed teens, coaches, delegation heads, parents, siblings, grandparents and honored guests from far and wide.
Our community dazzled everyone with performances, blessings and meaningful ceremonies. Our JCC served over 8,000 meals and riders traveled the venue bus loop over 200 times. Volunteers gave over 10,000 hours of their time. Our sky lit up with a rainbow of fireworks to celebrate new relationships and say l’hitraot – goodbye and see you again, friends!
Our Columbus 2016 JCC Maccabi Games were all of this and much more. Friends reconnected. Families who had never attended the Games were moved to tears. Junior Maccabi athletes anticipated their turn to be part of the future games. Teens bonded and learned what it means to live, Rachmanus – prideful sportsmanship and respect. Jewish values were reflected in JCC Cares programming and Midot Medals as precious as Gold were awarded. Our JCC brought the community together for one goal –celebrating Jewish teens.
Justice Louis Brandeis once said, “Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done.”
Thanks for making the 2016 JCC Maccabi Games possible and a cherished community success.
Benjamin S. Zacks
President, JCC Board of Directors
Jon & Karen Meyer
Chairs, Columbus 2016 JCC Maccabi Games