Notice:

Press Releases

The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. Celebrating its 100-year anniversary in 2014, JCC Indianapolis is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the United Way of Central Indiana and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

JCC Indianapolis Announces New CEO

JCC Indianapolis Announces New CEO

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
May 10, 2017

Indianapolis, Ind. (April 27, 2017) – JCC Indianapolis announced Tuesday that its board of directors has appointed Eric Koehler as Chief Executive Officer effective June 19, 2017. Koehler replaces Ira Jaffee, who retires in June after more than 30 years as the JCC’s CEO.

“After a nationwide search, we were pleased to land a candidate with a successful track record in running JCCs and in raising funds through events and donor-centric cultivation,” said Keith Pitzele, JCC board president. “In benchmarking studies of JCCs across the country, Eric was rated highest among his peers in membership retention, board excellence and staff motivation and professional development for 2015-16.”

Pitzele said Koehler sets a great example for the type of leader the search team was hoping to find. “As a deeply religious person, Eric believes each person has value. In Fairfax, Virginia, he created a program for young people with special needs. He cares about the person,” Pitzele said.

“As a person who has dedicated my career to Jewish communal work, I have an ongoing vision of bringing the Jewish community together at the JCC, and engaging the non-Jewish community through living our Jewish values. For me, this is more than just a transient career decision; it is my life mission,” Koehler said. “I believe that it is the JCC’s role to be the thread that ties the community together.”

Koehler cites the Jewish value of tikkun olam, repairing the world, as one of the important ones to the mission of the JCC. “It implies that each person has a hand in working toward the betterment of his/her own existence as well as the lives of future generations,” he said. “That value filters through all our programs in education, health and wellness and the arts.” The majority of members and program participants at the JCC Indianapolis are not Jewish.

Koehler comes to Indianapolis from Stamford, Connecticut where as CEO of the JCC there for five years he raised more than $7 million in two capital campaigns. Previously, he was the Executive Director of the JCC in Northern Virginia for almost five years where he grew the operating budget from $3.5 to $5.6 million. He has been involved in various roles at JCCs on the east coast and in the southern United States since 1996. Originally from Massachusetts, Koehler graduated from Boston University with a B.A. degree in Psychology. He earned an M.S. degree in Counseling from Salem State College, concentrating in Industrial Organizational Behavior.

About the JCC Indianapolis

The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, the United Way of Central Indiana and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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JCC Association Responds to Arrest of Suspect in Bomb Threats

JCC Association Responds to Arrest of Suspect in Bomb Threats

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 23, 2017

NEW YORK – Today, a suspect with dual Israeli-American citizenship was arrested in Israel in connection with dozens of threats made to Jewish Community Centers across the United States and Canada since the beginning of January. All such threats have turned out to be hoaxes. JCC Association of North America leadership was briefed by, and consulted with, the FBI this morning. In response to the arrest, JCC Association of North America President and CEO Doron Krakow said the following:

“On behalf of the JCC Association of North America and JCCs across the continent, we are gratified by the progress in this investigation, and applaud the commitment and leadership of the FBI and other federal agencies, Israeli law enforcement, and local law enforcement across the United States and Canada.

“We are troubled to learn that the individual suspected of making these threats against Jewish Community Centers, which play a central role in the Jewish community, as well as serve as inclusive and welcoming places for all – is reportedly Jewish.

“Emblematic of the strength of JCCs and the important model they represent for acceptance, inclusion, and appreciation for diversity is the remarkable support we have received from communities and community leaders across North America, including civic, political and faith community leaders. Throughout this long running period of concern and disruption that we are hopeful has come to an end, JCCs have had the opportunity to review and assess our security protocols and procedures, and we are confident that JCCs are safer today than ever before.

“As we celebrate JCC Association of North America’s centennial this year, millions of members and participants across the United States and Canada will continue to pass through our doors, taking part in the extraordinary programs and initiatives that have defined the town square of North American Jewish life. And they will continue to do so with total confidence that JCCs remain a vital and exciting engine for building inspired and ever-stronger communities.”

ABOUT JCC ASSOCIATION OF NORTH AMERICA:

JCC Association of North America strengthens and leads JCCs, YM-YWHAs and camps throughout North America. As the convening organization, JCC Association partners with JCCs to bring together the collective power and knowledge of the JCC Movement. JCC Association offers services and resources to increase the effectiveness of JCCs as they provide community engagement and educational, cultural, social, recreational, and Jewish identity building programs to enhance Jewish life throughout North America. By supporting the 25,000 Jewish communal professionals who connect with two million JCC participants each year—JCC Association encourages engaged lives of purpose and meaning. Learn more at jcca.org, on Facebook and on Twitter at @JCCA

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JCC Indianapolis Receives Bomb Scare; Returns to Normal Operations

JCC Indianapolis Receives Bomb Scare; Returns to Normal Operations

Indianapolis, Ind. (March 12, 2017) – The JCC Indianapolis received a bomb threat this morning. Local law enforcement investigated and nothing was found. The JCC quickly resumed normal operations. No one was injured.

This morning’s event is the second received by the Indianapolis JCC and one in a series of bomb threats received by JCCs across the country. All bomb threats have proven to be hoaxes, and all JCCs have quickly returned to regular operations.

JCC Indianapolis has security protocols in place to ensure the safety of our program participants and facility visitors. “The safety and security of our members and visitors is our top priority. We have practiced how to react quickly and appropriately to any emergency,” said Ira Jaffee, CEO.

“Our JCC is strongly rooted in the local community and plays a vital role as a fitness center, school and gathering place. Local JCCs serve not just the Jewish community, but the entire community. Participants from all different backgrounds come to their local JCCs for activities and opportunities to come together as a community. While we are relieved that all such threats have proven to be hoaxes and that not a single person was harmed, we are concerned about the anti-Semitism behind these threats, and the repetition of threats intended to interfere with day-to-day life,” he said.

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JCC Designated as Partner in Prevention

JCC Designated as Partner in Prevention

Indianapolis, Ind. (March 7, 2017) –JCC Indianapolis has achieved “Partner in Prevention” status, a designation awarded by the nonprofit Darkness to Light to organizations which take extra steps to protect the children they serve by training staff to understand the issue of child sexual abuse, identify unsafe situations and practices and react responsibly in the best interest of the children they serve.

One in 10 children will be sexually abused before the age of 18. JCC Indianapolis earned the “Partner in Prevention” designation by providing Stewards of Children training to more than 90% of its staff, management and volunteers. This evidence-informed program is scientifically proven to help participants prevent and respond to child sexual abuse. “Partner in Prevention” was created as a national standard to help parents and caregivers recognize organizations that take child protection seriously by implementing policy and training staff to prevent child sexual abuse.

Darkness to Light is an international organization that leads the movement to end child sexual abuse by educating and empowering adults in education, youth serving organizations, and communities. Darkness to Light has affiliates in all 50 states and 16 international locations.

To learn more about child sexual abuse prevention training or to enroll your organization in Darkness to Light’s “Partner in Prevention” program, please visit www.D2L.org/Partner.

About the JCC Indianapolis

The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, the United Way of Central Indiana and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

About Darkness to Light:

Darkness to Light (D2L) has championed the movement to end child sexual abuse since its founding in 2000. With affiliates in all 50 U.S. states and 16 additional countries, D2L provides individuals, organizations, and communities with the tools to protect children from sexual abuse. To date, the D2L network of 9,000 authorized facilitators has trained over 1.2 million parents, youth serving professionals, and organization volunteers in D2L’s award-winning Stewards of Children® child sexual abuse prevention program.

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JCC Indianapolis Receives Bomb Scare; Returns to Normal Operations

JCC Indianapolis Receives Bomb Scare; Returns to Normal Operations

Indianapolis, Ind. (February 27, 2017) – The JCC Indianapolis received a bomb threat this morning which turned out to be a hoax. No one was injured. Local law enforcement investigated and determined it was safe for the JCC to resume normal operations.

This morning’s event is one in a series of bomb threats received by JCCs across the country. All bomb threats have proven to be hoaxes, and all JCCs have quickly returned to regular operations.

JCC Indianapolis has security protocols in place to ensure the safety of our program participants and facility visitors. “The safety and security of our members and visitors is our top priority. We have practiced how to react quickly and appropriately to any emergency,” said Ira Jaffee, CEO.

He continued, “Our JCC is strongly rooted in the local community and plays a vital role as a fitness center, school and gathering place. Local JCCs serve not just the Jewish community, but the entire community. Participants from all different backgrounds come to their local JCCs for activities and opportunities to come together as a community. While we are relieved that all such threats have proven to be hoaxes and that not a single person was harmed, we are concerned about the anti-Semitism behind these threats, and the repetition of threats intended to interfere with day-to-day life.”

 

About the JCC Indianapolis

The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, the United Way of Central Indiana and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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JCCs Respond to New Wave of Bomb Threats Quickly, Effectively With Practiced Security Protocols to Keep Communities Safe

JCCs Respond to New Wave of Bomb Threats Quickly, Effectively With Practiced Security Protocols to Keep Communities Safe

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
UPDATED February 21, 2017

CONTACT:
Samantha Kupferman, West End Strategy Team
skupferman@westendstrategy.com

All JCCs Impacted Return to Normal Operations
JCC Association of North America collaborating with local JCCs, law enforcement, to ensure all JCCs safely serve communities

NEW YORK – On February 20, 11 Jewish community centers received phoned-in bomb threats. This comes in the aftermath of three waves of bomb threats in January (Jan. 9, Jan. 18, and Jan. 31), resulting in, through today, 68 incidents at 53 JCCs in 26 states and one Canadian province in total. All bomb threats this year proved to be hoaxes, and all JCCs impacted have returned to regular operations.

David Posner, director of strategic performance at JCC Association of North America, whose role involves advising local JCCs on security policies and practices, issued the below statement:

“On Feb. 20, 11 Jewish community centers received called-in bomb threats, which were ultimately determined to be hoaxes. Our centers have in place security protocols to ensure the safety of their program participants and facility visitors. All JCCs have now received the all-clear from local law enforcement and resumed regular operations, with a heightened level of security.

“As always, safety is our top priority, and we are continuously impressed with the JCC professionals on the ground who are relying on established best practices and strong relationships with law enforcement agencies to ensure the wellbeing of all who use and benefit from their facilities. Our JCCs are strongly rooted in communities across the country, and we will not be cowed by threats intended to disrupt people’s lives or the vital role Jewish community centers play as gathering places, schools, camps, and fitness and recreation centers.

“While we are relieved that all such threats have proven to be hoaxes and that not a single person was harmed, we are concerned about the anti-Semitism behind these threats, and the repetition of threats intended to interfere with day-to-day life. Local JCCs serve not just the Jewish community, but the entire community. Participants from all different backgrounds come to their local JCCs for activities, Jewish cultural and religious programming, and opportunities to come together as a community.

“We are in regular communication with the FBI, which is investigating these threats, to ensure the FBI has the most updated information. We hope to hear updates from the FBI on progress very soon.

“JCC Association is coordinating updated security trainings for JCC executives and staff, to ensure that our community of professionals across the country is prepared with critical tools, resources and contacts.”

JCC Association partners with Secure Community Network, which was established after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks to focus on security for Jewish institutions throughout North America, as it develops action plans and provides guidance, recognized practices, and research to local JCCs.

ABOUT JCC ASSOCIATION OF NORTH AMERICA:

JCC Association of North America strengthens and leads JCCs, YM-YWHAs and camps throughout North America. As the convening organization, JCC Association partners with JCCs to bring together the collective power and knowledge of the JCC Movement. JCC Association offers services and resources to increase the effectiveness of JCCs as they provide community engagement and educational, cultural, social, recreational, and Jewish identity building programs to enhance Jewish life throughout North America. By supporting the 25,000 Jewish communal professionals who connect with two million JCC participants each year—JCC Association encourages engaged lives of purpose and meaning. Learn more at jcca.org, on Facebook and on Twitter at @JCCA

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JCC Indianapolis CEO Announces Retirement

JCC Indianapolis CEO Announces Retirement

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (January 31, 2017) – JCC Indianapolis CEO Ira Jaffee, MSW, announced that he will be retiring in June 2017 after more than 33 years of leading the non-profit Jewish community center. JCC Indianapolis provides early childhood education, afterschool care, a fitness facility and arts programs to more than 5,000 member households (10,000 people) and to 25,000 non-members through programs open to the public.

“I’ve been fortunate to see scores of children in our early childhood education grow up, work for us as camp counselors, lifeguards and teaching assistants, and now become leaders themselves,” said Jaffee. “That’s a blessing.”

“Although we knew this day would come, it’s bittersweet,” said Keith Pitzele, chair of JCC Indianapolis’s board of directors. “We’re grateful for all that Ira has done for the J and happy for him as he starts this next chapter in his life, but he will be missed. He’s leaving very big shoes to fill.”

Over Jaffee’s tenure, membership more than doubled and the center’s budget increased from $1 million in 1984 when he first became CEO to $9 million today. Among his greatest achievements, Ira oversaw the JCC’s $15 million renovation and expansion completed in 1999, greatly increasing the JCC’s square footage to its present 160,000 square feet. In 2003, the JCC opened a $4.5 million Sid and Lois Eskenazi Aquatic Complex, featuring a 70,000-square-foot outdoor water park and indoor Backer Therapy Pool. Major support for the complex came from the Eskenazi family, Lilly Endowment, Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, United Way of Central Indiana and numerous families, individuals and foundations.

Last year, the JCC announced a major expansion of its early childhood education program, growing from ten classrooms to up to 17 classrooms, providing year-round education for children six weeks through pre-K. This fall, the JCC received its largest endowment gift from the family of Irwin and Ann Katz (of blessed memory). The Irwin and Ann Katz Cultural Arts and Education Endowment Fund will provide funding every year to support JCC arts and education programming.

“The major role of a non-profit CEO is to be fundraiser-in-chief and cheerleader-in-chief,” Jaffee said. “I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to fulfill those roles because I believe in the mission and work of the JCC. Although the majority of our members are not Jewish, the JCC is anchored in Jewish values.”

Although Jaffee is retiring from the JCC, he plans to continue working for the health and continuation of the Jewish community in central Indiana. “One of the values that’s important to me in living my faith and one I’ve tried to embody is ‘tikkun olam.’ This Jewish value/tradition means ‘repairing the world.’ It implies that each person has a hand in working toward the betterment of his/her own existence as well as the lives of future generations.”

Jaffee was born and raised in Easton, Pennsylvania and earned a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and a master’s degree in counseling from Butler University. He also earned a second master’s degree in non-profit management from Indiana University. He started at the JCC after initially working as a teacher at St. Thomas Aquinas School in Indianapolis.

Board Chair Keith Pitzele said that a search committee has been formed with a successor expected to be named before Jaffee retires in mid-June.

Jaffee’s tenure is a significant part of the community center’s overall history:

  • 1914: the Communal House (the precursor to the JCC) is formed on the near south side of Indianapolis to serve immigrant and indigent Jews
  • 1926: the center moves to its new location at 23rd and Meridian and is called the Kirshbaum Center
  • 1953: 40 acres are purchased at 67th and Hoover Road for a facility
  • 1958: the center’s new facility (a 24,000 square foot facility with meeting rooms, nursery school, a gym, outdoor pool and outdoor space for summer camp) is completed on 40 acres of land (the current site)
  • 1974: the JCC is expanded to 64,000 square feet
  • 1977: Ira Jafee is hired at the JCC as Youth & Young Adult Assistant Director
  • 1979: Jaffee becomes Assistant Director
  • 1984: Jaffee is named executive director of the JCC
  • 1999: $15 million renovation and expansion that more than doubles the square footage of the facility to 160,000 square feet, including the 20,000-square-foot Mordoh Fitness Center
  • 2003: $4.6 million Sid & Lois Eskenazi Aquatic Complex opens, featuring a 70,000-square-foot water park with an Olympic-sized pool, 300-foot lazy river, two slides and a zero depth pool for infants and toddlers
  • 2010: the JCC builds 30 raised beds for community members to garden
  • 2012: the JCC hosts a free Earth Day community celebration that in 2016 attracted more than 3,000 people
  • 2014: the JCC starts a community farmers market every Sunday in summer that today brings in more than 20 vendors of fresh local produce, baked goods and specialty products
  • 2016: early childhood education program is licensed to expand from 10 classrooms to 17
  • 2016: endowment gift from the Irwin and Ann Katz (of blessed memory) to establish the Irwin and Ann Katz Cultural Arts and Education Endowment Fund to support JCC arts programming

 

About the JCC Indianapolis

The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, the United Way of Central Indiana and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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JCC Receives Largest-Ever Endowment Gift

JCC Receives Largest-Ever Endowment Gift

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (January 31, 2017) – The generosity of Irwin and Ann Katz (of blessed memory) will be remembered forever through an endowment created by their children to sustain arts programming at the JCC. The Irwin and Ann Katz Cultural Arts and Education Endowment Fund was established with a gift from the family representing the largest-ever endowment gift given to the JCC. The endowment will provide funding of about $35,000 every year to support JCC arts programming.

Irv Katz (1919-2015) was a founding partner of accounting firm Katz, Sapper & Miller and was devoted to the JCC for more than 70 years. He was the only board president to serve two consecutive terms, leading the JCC at a pivotal time after World War II when the organization was raising funds to purchase land and construct the current facility.
The annual Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts was transformed from a one-week book fair to a major three-week cultural arts event when in 2000, Irv made a significant commitment to an annual contribution over a 15-year time period. In addition to financially supporting the growth of adult continuing education programs, Irv Katz also led the board of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis (1972-75).

About the JCC Indianapolis
The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, the United Way of Central Indiana and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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Inaugural Israeli Film Festival Gives Glimpse Into Israeli Culture

Inaugural Israeli Film Festival Gives Glimpse Into Israeli Culture

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (August 8, 2016) – The Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis and the JCC are presenting Indianapolis’ first Israeli Film Festival to show Israel as a lively and innovative nation and spotlight its thriving film industry. The Festival explores Israeli society through features, documentaries and conversations with Israeli filmmakers and stars of the films. This year’s festival presents provocative, humorous, inspiring, and controversial films.

Fast Facts

  • August 21-24, 2016
  • 5 films
  • 2 after-events (conversations with the star of the film and/or filmmaker)
  • $10 per person or $35 for an all-films pass
  • Presented by The Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis and JCC Indianapolis
  • Information at JCCindy.org/Israeli-film-fest, (317)251-9467

Schedule

Sunday, Aug 21  |  3 pm

Film: Sabena Hijacking—My Version

Sometimes reality can be more gripping than fiction. This powerful, suspenseful docu-drama is based on previously undiscovered audio recordings of Captain Reginald Levy (now deceased), the former pilot of Sabena Flight 571 that was hijacked by four members of the Palestine Liberation Organization. The film shares what took place throughout 30 hours of nerve-racking captivity on the flight from Brussels, Belgium to Tel Aviv, Israel on May 8, 1972. Included in the film are interviews with Israeli leaders in charge of the rescue effort—Benjamin Netanyahu, Ehud Barak and Shimon Peres—and the only surviving hijacker who was 18 years old at the time.

Awards

  • Best Docu-Drama Audience Favorite Award, Cherry Hill Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2016
  • Audience Favorite Award, Charlotte Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2016
  • Audience Award for best Documentary Film, LA Israeli Film Festival, October 2015
  • Nominated for best documentary film, The Israeli Academy Awards 2015

General Information

  • A Film by Rani Saar
  • Israel, 2015 | Docu-drama , 98 min.
  • Creator: Nati Dinnar | Director: Rani Saar
  • Producers: Nati Dinar, Moshe Edery and Leon Edery, Gilad Janklowicz
  • Production Company: United King and DNA Productions for Keshet Broadcasting

 

Sunday, Aug 21  |  6 pm

The Green Prince

Sponsored by John and Diane Abrams, Gadi Boukai- Realtor/Broker F.C. Tucker Co

A 2-hour film followed by a community conversation with the star of the film via Skype

Based on Mosab Hassan Yousef’s bestselling memoir Son of Hamas, THE GREEN PRINCE exposes a complex world of terror, betrayal, and impossible choices. A Palestinian in Ramallah, Mosab Hassan Yousef grows up angry and ready to fight Israel. Arrested for smuggling guns at the age of 17, he’s interrogated by the Shin Bet, Israel’s security service, and sent to prison. But shocked by Hamas’s ruthless tactics in the prison and the organization’s escalating campaign of suicide bombings outside, Mosab agrees to spy for Israel. For him, there is no greater shame. For his Shin Bet handler, Gonen, there is no greater prize: “operating” the oldest son of a founding member of Hamas.

Awards

  • Producers Guild Awards 2015 – Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures Nominee
  • Winner! Sundance Film Festival 2014 Audience Award – Best Documentary, World Cinema
  • Winner! Moscow International Film Festival 2014 – Audience Award
  • Winner! Docaviv Awards 2014 – Best Editing

General Info

A 101-minute (1 hr 41 min) film by Nadav Schirman and Music Box Films, the Academy Award® winning producers of MAN ON WIRE, SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN and ONE DAY IN SEPTEMBER.

 

Monday, Aug 22  |  7 pm

Apples from the Desert

Rebecca is the only daughter of an Orthodox Jewish family living in Jerusalem. Unhappy with the reality of her life, Rebecca secretly exposes herself to the secular world. One day she runs away with a young man to a kibbutz in the desert, leaving her family behind to start a new life-changing adventure.

Awards

  • Special Jury Award Winner (San Diego JFF 2015)
  • Best Feature Film Audience Choice Award (28th Israel Film Festival)
  • Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature (Atlanta JFF 2015)
  • BEVIE Award for Best Feature (Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema 2015)
  • Global Vision Award Winner (Cinquest Film Festival, San Jose 2015)

General info

Run time: 96 min
Directors Arik Lubetzky, Matti Harari

 

Tuesday, Aug 23  |  7 pm

The Kind Words

This film by Shemi Zarhin follows three Jewish Israeli brothers who, in the wake of their mother’s death, learn the man who raised them is not their biological father. The revelation sends them on a road trip from Israel across France. Between three languages, three continents and two generations, this trip is going to change their lives.

Awards

  • A New York Times Critic’s Pick
  • Nominated for 12 Ophir Awards (The Israel Academy of Motion Pictures and Television) including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Screenplay

 

Wednesday, Aug 24  |  7 pm

Mekonen: The Journey of an African Jew

Sponsored by Alpha Epsilon Pi International Fraternity, Irwin and Iliana Levin
A 45-minute mini-documentary followed by a live community conversation with Eden Adler, the commander in the film and film producer Matt Weisbaum

From the creators of the Netflix-featured Beneath the Helmet and PBS-featured Israel Inside. The film follows the backstory and personal journey of Mekonen Abebe, a young shepherd in Africa who becomes a commander in the Israeli Defense Forces. Mekonen, a young African-Israeli Jew, is one of many drafted into compulsory service to defend their homeland and the values of democracy, freedom and equality. Born and raised in an Ethiopian village, Mekonen was a 12-year-old shepherd when his father died suddenly, less than a day before his family was to move to Israel. The film accompanies Mekonen back to Africa on an emotional journey as he explores his roots, makes peace with his past and embraces his future in Israel. Mekonen is an uplifting and inspiring film that will move audiences and show viewers that anything is possible.

About the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis

Officially organized in 1904, the Jewish community of Indianapolis was one of the first organized Jewish communities in the country. The Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis is the philanthropic organization whose funding supports a vibrant network of people, agencies, programs and services that maintain and strengthen the Jewish community. It is located on 60 acres along Hoover Road in north central Indianapolis on the Max and Mae Simon Jewish Community Campus. The Federation supports organizations such as the JCC Indianapolis, Hooverwood (a home for seniors), Jewish Family Services at the Albert & Sara Reuben Senior and Community Resource Center, Jewish Community Relations Council and Bureau of Jewish Education. Today there are approximately 200 Federations organized like us throughout the U.S. that are involved with Jews in over 60 countries.

About JCC Indianapolis

The mission of JCC Indianapolis is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. More than 100 years old, the JCC is currently located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the United Way of Central Indiana and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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Local Community Leaders Receive Awards at JCC Annual Meeting

Local Community Leaders Receive Awards at JCC Annual Meeting

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (June 16, 2016) – The JCC Indianapolis presented awards to local leaders in the Jewish community at its annual meeting earlier this week. The board also elected its leadership and four new members.

The following community members received awards:

Joe Ofengender received the Ivan M. Chalfie Award for his contribution to the community and to promoting healthy Jewish family life. This is the 36th year for the award which was presented by Chalfie, an All-American swimmer in 1948 who went on to become a member of the Indiana University swim team. Ofengender was a member of the JCC board in the mid-1980s through the mid-1990s and a founding family of the Congregation Shaarey Tefilla, twice serving as the president of its board. He also helped to organize the Jacobs Home for Developmentally Disabled Adults.

The recipient of the Wolf/Birnbaum Jewish Community Teen Leadership Award for contributions by a high school senior to the Jewish community in service, participation and leadership is Ryan Rubenstein for his service on the local and regional boards of BBYO. Ryan is a graduate of North Central High School and will be attending Indiana University Bloomington in the fall, studying at the Kelley School of Business and Hutton Honors College.

JCC Membership Services staff member Donald Scott received the Marks Levy Award for outstanding service. An employee of the JCC since 2005, Don consistently receives positive reviews from JCC members for his friendliness and cheerfulness.

In addition to the awards, Udi Rose and his father Tom were recognized for their participation in a record-breaking Ride for the Living in Poland in early June. The 58-mile bike ride started in Auschwitz and ended in Birkenau and the Krakow JCC. Udi, a freshman at North Central and the grandchild of two survivors of the Nazi concentration camps, raised more than $2,000 to support the rebirth of Jewish life in Poland.

Members of the board of directors present at the meeting also elected officers for the organization. Keith Pitzele will serve as President of the Board. Vice presidents elected are Amy Essley, Jeff Kosc, Brian Modiano and Richard Soleimani. New members added to the JCC Board of Directors for a three-year term are Benjamin Abraham, certified financial planner for One to One Financial Advisors, Rachel Gershman, digital media supervisor at Young & Laramore, Sandy Schwarz and Suzette Solomon. Marshall Kahn was elected to serve a one-year term.

Also at the meeting, three JCC staff members were celebrated for their achievements. Cherri Jaffee who started the Pilates program at the JCC in 2002, doubling it over the past 10 years. Cherri is stepping down as pilates director but continuing her group exercise and dance classes. Heinz Dollinger retired after 22 years of beginning his workday at 3 a.m. as the JCC’s Maintenance Supervisor. In winter, he cleared the parking lots and walkways; in summer he prepared the pools for the day. The JCC’s business manager, Linda Hanley, also retired after being with the organization 24 years.

About the Arthur M. Glick JCC

The mission of JCC Indianapolis is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. More than 100 years old, the JCC is currently located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the United Way of Central Indiana and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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JCC Early Childhood Education Program Expands

JCC Early Childhood Education Program Expands

JCC Expands Early Childhood Education Program

Indianapolis, Ind. (April 26, 2016) – The JCC is pleased to announce they are licensed to expand their early childhood education (ECE) program. During the remainder of 2016, the school will grow from ten classrooms to a total of seventeen classrooms.

The JCC currently offers year-round education for more than 125 children—infants ages six weeks through Prekindergarten. With the expansion, they will be able to serve 36 more children beginning in May with additional classrooms to open as the year continues.

“We have been looking forward to expanding our ECE program for many years and are thrilled to be able to serve more families within the community on our campus,” said JCC CEO Ira Jaffee. “Our licensed center will have a long-lasting positive impact on children and their families and help to meet the demand in the community for quality early childhood education.”

“Many of the families currently enrolled in our program are growing and we had been constrained by the number of available spaces we had to offer, so we’re excited to be able to open up new classrooms,” said Erin Mills, JCC Director of Early Childhood Education. “Children learn best when they are actively exploring a carefully constructed environment in the company of loving, professionally prepared teachers. I look forward to continuing to work together as a partner with our ECE families and educators to promote growth and development of our children into life-long learners.”

Priority registration has started for the new classrooms. To find out more information about the JCC’s early childhood education program and open availability, schedule a tour by contacting Erica Johnson at (317)251-9467, ext. 2282 or ejohnson@JCCindy.org. Tours are on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to noon or Wednesdays from 4 to 5 p.m.

About the JCC’s Early Childhood Education program
The JCC embraces a learning-through-play teaching method that engages children in activities that promote creativity, accelerate learning and stimulate social interaction at each child’s individual pace. Many children enrolled in the JCC’s program are not Jewish, but the values taught in the classroom apply to all equally. In addition to Jewish values of kindness, respect and responsibility, the JCC focuses on “tzedakah,” the Hebrew word for doing good deeds and sharing with those less fortunate. Children participate throughout the year in activities to perform acts of kindness not only for their classmates and teachers but for others in the community through partnerships with other not-for-profit agencies. More information about the early childhood education program may be found on the JCC’s website: http://JCCindy.org.

About the JCC Indianapolis
The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, the United Way of Central Indiana and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

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David Nidiffer Joins JCC Indianapolis as CFO

David Nidiffer Joins JCC Indianapolis as CFO

David Nidiffer Joins JCC as CFO

Indianapolis, Ind. (April 18, 2016) – The JCC is pleased to announce that effective today David Nidiffer will be joining the JCC Indianapolis team as chief financial officer. David’s background includes a balance of both non-profit and for-profit work experience as a senior auditor at Price WaterhouseCoopers and multiple capacities at Eli Lilly in finance, marketing, and business development. David has been committed to non-profit service as a volunteer for many years, lending his talents to a variety of charitable institutions including the YMCA, Young Actors Theater, and the Historic Irvington Community Council. It was his involvement as the founding Treasurer and Member of the Board of Directors of Irvington Community School, one of Indianapolis’s first charter schools, that was the impetus for him to transition his career to the non-profit world. In 2006, he became the CFO of Irvington Community School. His role later expanded to CFO/CEO. David has had the unique experience of making the vision of Irvington Community School become a reality, and then seeing the very first class of students graduate and head off to college!

JCC Kicks Off Earth Day Season with Event on Sunday, April 17

JCC Kicks Off Earth Day Season with Event on Sunday, April 17

Preview Tours of Tiny House Selling Fast

General Admission Tours Available During the Earth Day Celebration

 

Indianapolis, Ind. (April 8, 2016) – The JCC has sold more than a third of its preview tickets for the highlight of the JCC’s Earth Day Community Celebration, a tiny house and yurt. More than 45 of the 130 tickets available have been sold for a preview tour of an almost 30-foot-long tiny house with furniture, cabinetry and flooring made of recycled materials. The rustic-themed home, built by Tiny By Design builders, was featured in December 2015 on HGTV’s Tiny House Hunters program. Visitors will also be able to tour a 20-foot yurt by Yurts of America, a circular structure that uses less construction material than traditional housing structures so is affordable and has a smaller footprint. Yurts of America is one of the leading sellers of yurts in the country and is based in Indianapolis. The preview tours are $5 per person. Tours are free during the Earth Day celebration. Admission to the celebration is free, too.

This is the fifth year for the JCC’s Earth Day Community Celebration, sponsored by Citizens Energy Group and Indianapolis Power & Light Company. The event attracts more than 2,000 visitors to the JCC’s 40-acre campus and is on Sunday, April 17 from 1 to 4 pm. More than 30 organizations participate and offer hands-on, earth-friendly activities for all ages (see a complete list below). Participants of all backgrounds and faiths are welcome.

Fast Facts
• Sunday, April 17 from 1-4 pm
• Official title: JCC Earth Day Community Celebration
• Co-sponsored by Citizens Energy Group and Indianapolis Power & Light Company
• FREE admission, but donations accepted
• More than 100 volunteers help put on the event
• 5th year for the event
• About 2,200 visitors expected
• 30+ activities and demonstrations, all green-related
• 30+ organizations
• 5 food trucks and vendors; Kosher lunches available, too
• Live music by Sure Thing on the JCC Stage sponsored by WTTS 92.3 FM
• 40-acre Simon Jewish Community Campus
• 325 free youth color-your-own T-shirts activity (the theme this year is the peregrine falcon)
• Webpage: www.JCCindy.org/community/earth-day

Organizations and Their Activities
Alpha Chi Sigma (professional chemistry fraternity)…………….. Paint with Bubbles
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana…………………………. Turn a T-shirt into Something Different
Camp JCC……………………………………………………………………. Eco Art
Camp JCC……………………………………………………………………. Paint-Your-Own Earth Day T-shirt (the Peregrine Falcon)
*Citizens Energy Group…………………………………………………. Water Quality Testing
Commuter Connect (CIRTA)……………………………………………. TBA
Cummins……………………………………………………………………. Pedal Power and Energy Efficiency
eScrapInc……………………………………………………………………. Dismantle and Rebuild Your PC
Friends of the White River……………………………………………… Mobile App Guide
Girl Scouts of Central Indiana………………………………………….. It’s Your Planet – Love It!
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis…………………….. How Do I ReUse That?
Holliday Park……………………………………………………………….. Wildlife in Central Indiana
Hoosier Environmental Council……………………………………….. TBA
Humane Society of Indianapolis………………………………………. Make Dog Toys from Recycled Materials
Indianapolis Knitting Guild & Trading Post…………………………. From Sheep to Shawl featuring a Live Llama
*Indianapolis Power & Light……………………………………………. Power View
Java Totes…………………………………………………………………… Upcycled Coffee Totes by Butler University student-run business
JCC Indianapolis…………………………………………………………… Glamping Raffle; Spin the Prize Wheel!
Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis,
PJ Library and Young Leadership Division…………………………… Hike & Learn; Trash-y Art
Natural Awakenings Indy……………………………………………….. Native Flowers…& Worms!
Nina Mason Pulliam EcoLab at Marian University………………… Native Pollinators
Oberweis Dairy……………………………………………………………. Fresh from the Dairy Milk Samples
Precision Comfort Systems…………………………………………….. Solar Energy Can Heat What?
Purdue Extension-Marion County……………………………………. Know Your Food, Win Food
Purdue Extension-Marion County……………………………………. Make a Mini-Greenhouse
Purdue Extension-Marion County……………………………………. Make a Butterfly
Purdue Extension-Marion County……………………………………. Recycled Flowers
Purdue Extension-Marion County……………………………………. Ask a Master Gardeners
Purdue Extension-Marion County……………………………………. Home Composting
Purdue University Solar Racing Team……………………………….. Solar Race Car Demonstration
State Farm Insurance……………………………………………………. DIY Terrariums
The Nature Conservancy of Indiana………………………………….. DIY Butterfly Puzzles
Tiny by Design……………………………………………………………… Explore Tiny Living
Wings for West Africa with RecycleForce…………………………… Recycle Anything with a Power Cord
WTTS FM……………………………………………………………………. Partner with eScrapInc
Yurts of America………………………………………………………….. Tiny Living…in a Yurt

* Co-Sponsors of the Event

Live Music by Sure Thing on the WTTS Stage
Sure Thing plays acoustic, rock, blues and have recorded a cover that was featured on Music Crowns. The guitarist, Adam Cantor, is a medical student and his YouTube has over 7 million views. Their webpage: https://www.facebook.com/surethingband

Food Trucks
Food trucks on-site include General American Donut Co., Nicey Treat, Pierogi Love Indy, Three Spuds and The Twisted Sicilian.

Raffle
To raise money to support the JCC and events like this one, the JCC will have a raffle for a Glamping Prize Package for a two-night stay in a luxury yurt overlooking the Red River Gorge in Kentucky. The value is about $950 and includes two passes to an aerial ropes course, two passes to a zipline course and a canoe adventure for two. Details about the Glamping Prize Raffle are on the JCC’s website. Tickets are $5 each or 3 for $10 and are available at the JCC’s East Membership Desk now through the day of the event. They will also be available at the event. The drawing will be at 4 pm Sunday, Apr 17 (winner need not be present to win).

Sponsors
Additional sponsors for the event include Lori Efroymson Aguilera and Sergio Aguilera and Renny and Greg Silver, all who have supported this event since its inception in 2012. Additional support provided by WTTS; NUVO; WFYI; Constellation, an Exelon Company; and Cummins.

About the JCC Indianapolis
The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. JCC Indianapolis, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014, is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the United Way of Central Indiana and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America.

17th Annual Ann Katz Festival of Books and Arts

17th Annual Ann Katz Festival of Books and Arts

Famed Drummer Kenny Aronoff Kicks Off

JCC’s Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts

 

Indianapolis, Ind. (September 30, 2015)—The JCC’s 17th Annual Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts kicks off Wed., Oct. 28 with An Evening with Kenny Aronoff. The famous drummer and IU Jacobs School of Music graduate has worked with iconic musicians such as John Fogerty, John Mellencamp, Elton John, Paul McCartney, B.B. King, Johnny Cash and others. During this intimate evening beginning at 7:30 p.m., Aronoff will perform live and share his keys to success from his 40-plus years in the music business. $25 in advance; $30 at the door.

 

Aronoff will also teach a master class from 4-5 p.m. for $50 per person.  Aronoff will discuss the four concepts of drumming that apply to all styles of music and offer insights into functional practicing, recording in studios, and preparing for live or studio work. Kenny will also address any questions from participants about playing the drums or anything related to the music business.

 

About the Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts

The JCC’s 17th annual Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts is a three-week festival featuring local, national and international authors, filmmakers and performing and fine artists. This year’s Festival of Books runs October 28 through November 16, 2015. Unless noted otherwise, sessions are in the JCC’s Laikin Auditorium and are $10. Information and tickets may be found at http://jccindy.org/festival-books-arts/. Save money on multiple Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts events with the Festival Pass for $40. The Festival Pass is good for all events, but does not apply to special performances—Kenny Aronoff event and master drum class or the Tracing Service at the Indiana Historical Society or at the JCC.

 

Events: Authors

Tess Gerritsen , “Playing with Fire”
Mon, Nov 2 |  7 pm  |  $10
Tess Gerritsen is best known as author of “Rizzoli & Isles” which is now a TV series on TNT. In “Playing With Fire,” a woman haunted by an old piece of music uncovers a dark, decades-old secret involving a dangerously powerful family that will stop at nothing to keep her from bringing the truth to light. Gerritsen will be playing a musical piece she wrote for the novel, accompanied by internationally-known violinist, Susanne Hou. Sponsored by Bureau of Jewish Education

 

Local Authors Panel
Tue, Nov 3  |  7 pm  |  $10
Indy Reads Books’ local authors program comes to the JCC featuring Dan Wakefield, Barb Shoup, Lou Harry and Jeff Knurek.
Wakefield is a novelist, journalist and screenwriter whose best-selling novels “Going All The Way” and “Starting Over” were produced as feature films. Shoup is the author of eight novels, including four for young adults, and the co-author of “Novel Ideas: Contemporary Authors Share the Creative Process” and “Story Matters.” She is the Executive Director of the Indiana Writers Center. Lou Harry, Arts & Entertainment Editor for the Indianapolis Business Journal, is the author or co-author of more than 25 books including “Creative Block” (Running Press), “The High-Impact Infidelity Diet” (Random House) and “Kid Culture” (Cider Mill Press). Knurek lives near Indianapolis and is an award-winning toy and game inventor, consumer product developer, puzzle creator, cartoonist and musician. Together with David Hoyt, they create the world’s favorite puzzles, including Jumble which is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. He created a special Jumble for Kenny Aronoff.

 

Nicole Dweck, “The Debt of Tamar”
Wed, Nov 4  |  7 pm  |  $10
COMMUNITY READS
When “The Debt of Tamar,” Dweck’s debut novel, was self-published, it was a USA Today bestseller and received honorable mention in Writer’s Digest’s Self-Published Book Awards. This lyrical tale of lovers lost and found across the centuries, takes the reader from a 16th-century harem to a seaside village in the Holy Land, from Nazi-occupied Paris to modern-day Manhattan. Bestselling author Nicole Dweck weaves a spellbinding tapestry of love, history, and fate that will enchant readers from the very first page.

Special offer for book clubs. Contact Lisa Freeman at lfreeman@jccindy.org or 715-9240 for details.

Sponsored by The Saturday Evening Post, Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation and Congregation Shaarey Tefilla Sisterhood

 

Michelle Goldberg, “The Goddess Pose: The Audacious Life of Indra Devi, the Woman Who Helped Bring Yoga to the West”
Thu, Nov 5  |  7 pm  |  $10
Goldberg, a senior contributing writer for The Nation, traces the modern Western practice of yoga to a Russian woman named Indra Devi, who studied the practice in India before introducing it to political leaders in Russia and Shanghai and in 1947, bringing it to America and Hollywood celebrities like Greta Garbo and Gloria Swanson. Come early at 4:30 p.m. for a special yoga class led by Ashley Zeller and her fellow JCC Community Yoga School teachers. $5 | Open to all | Please bring your own mat

 

Rabbi Sandy Sasso and Peninnah Schram, “Jewish Stories of Love and Marriage”
Mon, Nov 9  |  7 pm  |  $10
“Jewish Stories of Love and Marriage” offers a treasury of tales that speak to the tenderness and passion, difficulties and blessings of love. These are the stories that tell of heartbreak and devotion. They tell of how people fall in love and how they grow in love. The narratives are as old as the Bible and as new as the twenty-first century. They come from places as far-ranging as Yemen and New York. The relationships are heterosexual and homosexual, arranged and spontaneous, young and mature. Though they reflect the times and places in which they were told, they have a universal message about longing and romance, relationship, respect, and commitment.
Sponsored by Congregation Beth-El Zedeck

 

Jon Wertheim, “You Can’t Make This Up: Miracles, Memories and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television”
Tue, Nov 10  |  7 pm  |  $10
An evening with Sports Illustrated executive editor and Indiana native, Jon Wertheim, one of the most accomplished sports journalists in America. He’ll talk about his wide range of experiences and his new book, which he co-wrote with Al Michaels, legendary sportscaster and the play-by-play voice of NBC’s “Sunday Night Football.”
Sponsored by Israel Bonds

 

Katja Goldman and Lisa Rotmil, “The Community Table: Recipes & Stories from the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan and Beyond”
Wed, Nov 11  |  7 pm  |  $10
JCC Manhattan presents its first-ever cookbook and puts a modern, lighter spin on beloved Jewish fare. A compendium of Jewish recipes both modern and classic, The Community Table shares anecdotal contributions from JCCs all around the country, celebrating the many flavors of the JCC’s vibrant, eclectic community. Special for this event is a taste-testing of select recipes, courtesy of Jeffery Bricker and his Ivy Tech culinary students. Join the authors in voting for your favorites.

 

Mickey’s Corner with Eliz Kraft Taylor
Thu, Nov 12  |  7 pm  |  $10
Mickey Maurer, local business leader, entrepreneur and philanthropist, brings back his Emmy award-winning talk show, Mickey’s Corner, live at the JCC. His guest: Elizabeth “Eliz” Kraft Taylor, retired senior staffer at Simon Property Group and author of “Three Jews Walked Into a Shopping Center.” She recounts her experiences working for the late Mel Simon, one of Forbes’s top billionaires, sharing her own story of overcoming poverty and abuse along the way. “…we are all born with handicaps and blessings. Our job in life is to figure out which is which,” she writes.

 

 

Events: Performances

An Evening with Kenny
Wed., Oct. 26  |  7:30 pm  |  $25 in advance, $30 at the door
The famous drummer and IU Jacobs School of Music graduate has worked with iconic musicians such as John Fogerty, John Mellencamp, Elton John, Paul McCartney, B.B. King, Johnny Cash and others. During this intimate evening beginning at 7:30 p.m., Aronoff will perform live and share his keys to success from his 40-plus years in the music business. Bonus: Aronoff will also teach a master class from 4-5 p.m. for $50 per person.  Aronoff will discuss the four concepts of drumming that apply to all styles of music and offer insights into functional practicing, recording in studios, and preparing for live or studio work.

 

The Choreography of Dreams, a Spirit & Place event
Sun, Nov 8  |  10 am and 1:30 pm (two shows)  |  FREE
An award-winning collaboration featuring five unique video stories as related by community elders and interpreted by Dance Kaleidoscope dancers. The performance incorporates music, video, and spoken word to shed light on what it’s like to age in today’s world and dispel stereotypes about aging. Recipient of the 2015 Spirit & Place Prize, a $20,000 award sponsored by the Central Indiana Senior Fund, an affiliate of the Central Indiana Community Foundation. In Partnership with Dance Kaleidoscope, The Indiana Writer’s Center, Jewish Family Services at The Albert & Sara Reuben Senior and Community Resource Center with support from the Central Indiana Senior Fund and The Penrod Society Ltd.

 

Events: Films

“Stateless”
Thu, Oct 8  |  7 pm  |  $10 ($8 JCC Members)
In partnership with the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis
Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank
A Taste of Ann Katz Festival of Books and Arts
In the late 1980s, on the brink of the collapse of the Soviet Union, tens of thousands of Soviet Jews were finally allowed to leave the USSR. What they didn’t expect was that their final destination, America, no longer welcomed them with open arms. In 1988, American policy suddenly changed and thousands of Soviet Jews were stranded in Italy. Stateless. This documentary captures that unique slice of history from the point of view of the émigrés as well as expert accounts of the situation from influential Jewish leaders.

 

“Dough”
Thu, Oct 29  |  7 pm  |  $10
A heartwarming dramedy about how an old Jewish baker’s failing business gets an unexpected boost when his young Muslim apprentice one day accidentally drops his cannabis stash into the dough.
Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank, Butler University’s Center for Faith and Vocation

 

“The Art Dealer”
Thu, Nov 7  |  7 pm  |  $10
This new French drama by director Francois Margolin (The Flight of the Red Balloon) follows a Jewish woman who embarks on a journey to recover family paintings stolen by the Nazis during World War II. During her investigation, she discovers some family secrets are best kept hidden.
Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank

 

Heartland Award-Winning Short Films
Sat, Nov 14  |  7 pm  |  $10
A selection of films from the latest Heartland Film Festival plus video chats with principals of the films. Sponsored by Heartland Film and Fifth Third Bank

 

Event: Art Exhibition

Books As Art
Tue, Nov 3  |  5:30 pm  |  FREE
Artists’ reception for Books as Art: Highlights from Herron School of Art + Design, IUPUI
Exhibit runs through Dec 4
In this digital age the book is no longer the sole location for information. Artists have recognized this shift and begun to claim the book as an expressive format – much like sculpture, painting or photography. Artists’ books have the unique ability to cultivate intimate relationships with viewers and readers.

JCC art programs and gallery are made possible through the generous support of the Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation and The Indianapolis Foundation.

 

 

Events: Other

Seussapalooza
Sun, Nov 1  |  2-4 pm  |  FREE
Bring the family and join us as we celebrate one of America’s most beloved children’s authors, Theodore Seuss Geisel, best known as “Dr. Seuss.” Fun will abound for all ages, even grown-ups! Arts & crafts activities, an appearance by a special guest, book reading corners where you can get comfy and listen to one of your favorite Dr. Seuss books read aloud. Who knows, you may even get to hear “The Cat in the Hat” in Hebrew! Older kids, moms, dads and grandparents will enjoy seeing special original artwork, sketches and illustrations of Dr. Seuss, a glimpse at a Collection of Unorthodox Taxidermy (think “stuffed Dr. Seuss animal creations”) and other collectibles.
In partnership with Barnes & Noble and The Art of Dr. Seuss by J.S. Yopp Gallery at The Fashion Mall

 

Weston Clark, Youth Poetry Workshop
Thu, Nov 5  |  4:30 pm  |  FREE
Weston Clark, a student at Park Tudar, is literary ambassador for the National Student Poets Program. He provides this FREE interactive workshop for students in Grades 3-7. The National Student Poets Program is a signature initiative of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, promotes and celebrates young people as makers and doers who can engage audiences of all ages in the art of poetry.

 

Sun, Nov 15 |  2-4 pm  |  $12
Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center
The International Tracing Service was set up after World War II to help survivors of Nazi Germany find their families. It is still helping to reunite survivors. This is your opportunity to hear about the service in general at the Indiana History Center on Sun., Nov. 15 from 2-4 p.m. and to also schedule an individual consultation at the JCC on Mon, Nov 16 from 1-6 p.m. and 7-10 p.m. (pre-registration required; $8 per consultation). To register, visit www.IndianaHistory.org or call 317-232-1882.

 

Sponsors (as of September 25, 2015)

The Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts is made possible by:

  • Irwin Katz*
  • Central Indiana Senior Fund
  • The Lilly Endowment
  • Katz Sapper & Miller (in memory of Irwin Katz)
  • Stephen and Catherine Simon

 

Contributing Sponsors

  • Christel DeHaan Family Foundation
  • The Saturday Evening Post
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • Israel Bonds
  • Penrod Society
  • Congregation Beth-El Zedeck
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Heartland Film
  • The Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis
  • Schahet Hotels

 

Supporting Sponsors

  • Cohen Garelick & Glazier
  • John & Diane Abrams
  • Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation
  • The Art of Dr. Seuss gallery

 

Partnering Sponsosr

  • Congregation Shaarey Tefilla Sisterhood
  • Butler University’s Center for Faith and Vocation
  • Bureau of Jewish Education
  • Doehrman Buba
  • The Indianapolis Marion County Public Library
  • Katz & Korin
  • Indy Reads Books
  • Spirit & Place
  • Dance Kaleidoscope
  • The Indiana Writer’s Center
  • Albert & Sara Reuben Senior and Community Resource Center
  • Indiana History Center

 

Special Thanks

  • Center for Interfaith Cooperation
  • C. Tucker Co. Inc.
  • Eddie and Laurie Freeman
  • Jane and Howard Morrison
  • Etz Chaim Sephardic Congregation
  • Hadassah
  • Paige’s Music
  • PJ Library of Greater Indianapolis
  • United States Auto Club

 

*of blessed memory

 

About the JCC of Indianapolis

The JCC Indianapolis’s mission is to enrich the community by perpetuating Jewish tradition and heritage while celebrating diversity of beliefs through arts, education, health and wellness programs. More than 100 years old, JCC Indianapolis is located at Arthur M. Glick JCC, 6701 Hoover Road and is a beneficiary agency of the United Way of Central Indiana and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America. The JCC is also a member of the Jewish Book Network and the Jewish Book Council.

 

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JCC awarded $285,000 from Lilly Endowment Inc

JCC awarded $285,000 from Lilly Endowment Inc

JCC awarded $285,000 Capacity-Building Grant by Lilly Endowment Inc.

Indianapolis, IN (August 4, 2015) – The JCC of Indianapolis was recently awarded a $285,000 capacity-building grant by Lilly Endowment Inc. The support will help the JCC to develop a more effective and sustainable funding model and identify and implement programs and partnerships that attract a more diverse and inclusive audience. The JCC will use a portion of the grant to hire a consultant to deliver training and coaching to its leadership and staff to accomplish its capacity-building goals.

“We are thrilled and honored to receive this award from Lilly Endowment,” said Ira Jaffee, JCC CEO.  “It will be a key driver towards building a culture of philanthropy at our agency.”

In the early 20th century, visionary leaders founded the Jewish Community Center on the south side of Indianapolis. The JCC’s founders were Jewish immigrants struggling to acclimate to a new life in Indianapolis. They built the JCC as a safe haven in which to find acceptance and community. The JCC has evolved throughout its first century: changing locations, growing in size and adapting to the changing needs of its community to become the vibrant, energetic and diverse organization that exists today.

The JCC’s membership currently stands at 4,000 households with more than 10,000 individuals. With 1,100 Jewish households represented, the JCC remains the largest Jewish membership organization in central Indiana. Members and non-members engage with the Jewish community through the JCC’s diverse offerings, which include childcare and afterschool programming, pre-school, youth sports leagues, teen programming, senior outreach, health and fitness classes and arts and cultural programming. As an agency of both the Jewish Federation and the United Way of Central Indiana, the JCC is focused on a commitment to Jewish values while improving lives and affecting positive change in the greater central Indiana community.
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The JCC is a beneficiary agency of the United Way of Central Indiana and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis, and an affiliate member of the JCC Association of North America*.

Following are links to past JCC Indianapolis press releases:

 

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