April Youth Group News

March is always one of the busiest months at H2I, and this year was no exception. We started off the month with a groundbreaking program on March 2 at Hollis Hills Jewish Center. At the beginning of the year, when our USY Chapter Board members were discussing out-of-the-box programming ideas, they suggested having a joint program with local BBYO teens to emphasize what we have in common despite “rivalry” that tends to drive us apart. On March 2, this idea came to fruition, as H2I was joined by local BBYO chapters for a program that included icebreakers, a discussion about “Why We Should Be Proud to Be Jewish…and How We Can Overcome Boundaries to Expressing That Pride” led by Rabbi Wise, and time to get to know each other over pizza. Almost 50 USY and BBYO teens had a great time meeting each other and breaking down the walls that have divided us.

Along with some Purim cooking and crafts, bowling, and “Minute to Win It” and “Hunger Games” competitions, the rest of our month centered around our annual Purim Carnival on March 16. Families from around the area came to ICCJ for a fun afternoon with games, prizes, snacks, a moonbounce, and exciting raffle items. Congratulations to all of our raffle winners, and special thanks to all the companies that donated: AMC Fresh Meadows, Broadway Comedy Club, Buffalo Bills, Canvas on Demand, Chelsea Piers, The Ride, Disney, Green Mountain Coffee, National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, NY Giants, NY Jets, NY Skyride, NY Water Taxi, Otterbox, Queens Center Mall, Stampin’ Up, Staten Island Yankees, Tiny Print, Top of the Rock, and some local establishments like A&A Gourmet and others that have donated after this bulletin deadline.

Of course, Kiryah Spring Kinnus also took place during March, this year at Sutton Place Synagogue in Manhattan. Many of our youth joined with teens from around the NY Metropolitan area for a Shabbat of ruach (spirit) and learning!

We have a lot to look forward to in April, including our annual Chocolate Seder on April 6. Hosted at ICCJ, our Chocolate Seder for Grades 1-7 will be from 5-6:30 PM and for Grades 8-12 will be from 7-8:30 PM. After a relaxing break for Passover, we’ll begin the homestretch of the year with a meaningful Yom HaShoah program on April 27.

If you’d like more information about H2I, don’t hesitate to be in touch!

Daniel Bacharach