Long Island City’s Chabad, hosted by Rabbi Zev Wineberg and his wife, Rivka, celebrated the grand opening of its new Jewish Community Center last Thursday with an art exhibit and honey tasting. Since apples and honey are traditionally eaten on Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, which is being celebrated this week, the tasting helped reinforce the symbolism of a sweet new year.
The Winebergs moved to LIC about four years ago. Their main goal was to be an influential part of building the community.
“The JCC will serve as a multi-purpose base for gatherings, resource assistance and religious observance,” the rabbi said.
Formally known as JCC Chabad LIC, it is located at 10-31 Jackson Ave.
Rabbi Yitzchok Moully, whose art was displayed at the opening, attended rabbinical school with Wineberg in Morristown, NJ. Moully describes his work as “Chassidic pop art.” A portion of the sales of the art will be donated to the center.
Moully’s upbringing was off the beaten path. Raised by former hippies, he was exposed to far more color then one would expect in the rigorously orthodox Chassidic community.
After dabbling in various forms of art, Moully found an expression for his creativity in the silkscreen process.
Moully’s art contrasts strong Judaic and Chassidic images with vibrant bold colors to create a startling combination.
Among the attendees at last week’s event were Eric Benaim and Ted Kokkoris, co-owners of Modern Spaces Realty. According to Rabbi Zev, Benaim and Kokkoris were supporters of the new center and sponsored the mezuzah, which was placed on the door frame by Benaim while reciting the prayer.
Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) wished Wineberg well on the opening of the center and and spoke of the beauty of the mezuzah, while telling of his own experiences in Israel.
For more information of the Long Island City JCC, visit jewishlic.com.