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JCC State of Mind – April 12, 2024

Eclipses are a pretty special thing around the JCC of Greater Pittsburgh. In his weekly shabbat message, my predecessor and good friend Brian Schreiber wrote about the last eclipse visible here in Pittsburgh and a moving confluence of events inside of our early childhood development center where we helped Dr. Paul Caplan (z”l), who was 104 years old at the time, put on a pair …

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JCC State of Mind – April 5, 2024

Despite today’s forecast of blustery winds and the possibility of snow showers, the calendar tells us that spring has indeed sprung. A host of daffodils, flowering cherry trees and longer days are telltale signs of warmer days ahead. Spring is particularly meaningful to me, as it is a time of renewal and growth. Just as nature emerges from its winter slumber and begins to come alive …

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JCC State of Mind – March 29, 2024

Written by guest authors: Abbey Plumb, Squirrel Hill Children, Youth and Family Department Director Emma Litwak, South Hills Children, Youth and Family Department Director, Director of South Hills Day Camp Celebrating Jewish holidays is one of the many ways that our community comes together. While Purim is not one of the most holy days on the Jewish calendar, it has certainly become one of the biggest Jewish holiday gatherings …

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You might hate to do these exercises, but you’ll love the results!

Exercising isn’t always easy, but that’s the point of it. Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do – for brain health, to help manage weight, reduce the risk of disease, strengthen bones and muscles, and all this can improve your ability to do every day activities. Matt Hunter, Personal Trainer and DEKA Instructor at the JCC South Hills, talks about …

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JCC State of Mind – March 22, 2024

  Written by guest authors: Rachael Speck, Division Director, Children and Family, Day Camping and Teen Engagement Aaron Cantor, Emma Kaufmann Camp Director Last week, our JCC Pittsburgh camp teams had the privilege and opportunity to attend the American Camp Association Tri-State Camp Conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey. We heard from keynote speaker Danny Meyer, renowned restauranteur (perhaps best known as the founder of Shake Shack), writer and hospitality industry leader. Central …

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JCC State of Mind – March 1, 2024

Back in 2016, David Bryfman from The Jewish Education Project came to Pittsburgh and told us very directly that if we were still programming for teens the way we were five years ago that we would soon lose our audience. We took David’s advice to heart and with the generous support of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, we have completely reinvented our approach to …

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JCC State of Mind – February 23, 2024

In the fast-paced and competitive landscape of today’s workplace, professional development is required for both organizational and personal growth and adaptation. Yet, despite its pivotal role in employee success, many tend to overlook or undervalue the significance of continuous learning and skill enhancement. Some professionals, having reached a certain level of competence in their field, erroneously believe that they have attained all the knowledge and …

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JCC State of Mind – February 16, 2024

Last week I attended the JCCA’s annual Mifgash conference in Denver, Colorado and had the opportunity to gather with more than 140 JCC leaders from across North America to think and learn collaboratively about the unique interests and priorities of our respective JCCs and the broader JCC Movement in today’s world. Having been on the job for a whopping five months, I arrived with the typical conference …

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JCC State of Mind – January 19, 2024

Continuing the Work of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rabbi Joachim Prinz When the nation's attention turned to the National Mall on August 28th, 1963, moments before the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. shared his dream of what America could be, his ally, Rabbi Joachim Prinz of New Jersey took to the podium. He and King were among the ten leaders of …

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JCC State of Mind – January 12, 2024

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to join the JCC’s talented team of lifeguards for a mandatory training session at our South Hills pool. Organized and led by a number of key members of our aquatics staff – Carla Hartley, Sarah Grimm, Anna Rose Watterson, Lex Glickman, Tim Griffith and Emily Lawrence – we discussed general preparedness, proper surveillance and water rescue techniques, teamwork, communication …

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