What a great Purim Carnival! The place was packed with dozens of members and friends from far and wide, as the synagogue and social hall were turned into a festive carnival setting. The event featured wines from various Jewish wineries in the Valley, hamantashen galore, costumes, treats, face painting and games for the kids, along with a festive Megillah reading accompanied by lots of loud graggers. Special thanks to Abbey, Mark, Mondy and David for the tremendous amount of work they put into the event to make it a smashing success.

Future Jewish Olympians filled the Kelowna Curling Club on Saturday for a fantastic afternoon of curling and Tacos. We began with a quick lesson from our seasoned curler, Bob Levin, and then divided into 6 teams across 3 sheets of ice for 2 hours as “hurry hards” and “SWEEP” echoed in the arena. The event concluded with Taco’s, beverages and lots of laughs. Thank you to everyone that attended and looking forward to having this event once again in the fall.

Natalie, Laura, Barb and Steven
TEAM OJC, Don and Judith

Seventeen persons, young and old, gathered at OJC on Sunday morning, February 19th, 2023 to get experience in creating a meaningful Hamsa design with watercolours. The program was led by local artist, Olya Krasavina, who led us in the design, choice of theme, the drawing and painting of our creation. A lovely, pleasant way to spend a Sunday morning being creative. Thank-you to Olya for presenting this project to us.

This year’s Tu B’Shevat seder was enjoyed by all.  We celebrated the New Year of the Trees with the eating of fruits grown in Israel and the drinking of different shades of wine to signify the four seasons.  We told stories, sang songs, and discussed the importance of trees in Israel and the world.  Spirits were high and everyone had a great time together.

Sunday morning was an absolutely gorgeous day filled with sunshine as about 35 friends gathered to celebrate Sukkot. Thank you to everyone for sharing in the simcha of building, covering and decorating our Sukkah. Rabbi Tom also led us in song and introduced us all to the tradition of shaking the lulav and the joyous citrus smell of the etrog.

Chag Sameach

OJC’s 2nd Summer BBQ of the year took place on August 28th at the Mission Activity Center on Sarsons Beach. The weather was fabulous and over 60 guests thoroughly enjoyed the event. Everyone was treated to the exquisite BBQ skills of Mondy Challmie and Nuri Fisher. Thank you to them both for the delicious food that was grilled to perfection. Very special thanks to Mondy Challmie for arranging, shopping and transporting the OJC food along with all our guests that brought extra treats to make it a successful event Hope to see you all out for the High Holidays and an early Shana Tova.

OJC’s Annual Summer picnic/bar-b-que took place on Sunday, July 10th at Bertram Creek Park. Spectacular weather enabled the 50 or so attendees to thoroughly enjoy the event, one another’s company and the delicious food that was both supplied and brought by members. Very special thanks to Mondy Challmie and David Spevakow for arranging, shopping, transporting and working the bar-b-que! Hope to see you all out again for our repeat Summer event at Sarson’s Beach on Sunday, August 28th.

OJC made their presence known at two summertime Multicultural Events in the City. June 25th, West Kelowna hosted a multicultural event and on July 1st, OJC participated at the Annual Folkfest at Prospera with a cultural display and with the sale of bagels, cream cheese and lox. It was great to participate at these events after a 2 – 3 year period of lockdown during the height of the pandemic. It’s always of great importance to have a visible presence at these public events as one of many of the multicultural communities in the Kelowna.

OJC hosted one of our ”Traditional Shabbat Dinners and traditional Kabbalat Shabbat service” run by Rabbi Tom, on Friday evening, June 10th. This brings back one of the important events that OJC hosted prior to COVID shutting the building and food service down. Twenty-six persons attended and were delighted to welcome back that feeling of connection with one another and with Judaism that we are trying to rebuild after COVID activity is hopefully settling. The food, the company and the ”feeling” of the evening was warmly appreciated. Stay tuned as OJC hopes to run these 1/month. Please note them on your calendar and DO come out to share with your Community.

Thank-you to Evgenia Kempinski of Haifa, Israel for her informative, live, private presentation that she gave to OJC members and friends on Sunday, June 5, 2022. Besides presenting history and cultural information about the shtetl system and society, she was able to present on a good handful of the specific communities that we had submitted from where our grandparents came from. Great research by Evgenia and great photos. Did you see your grandparents in the photos that she presented from the early 20th century?