MoTAS Weekly for 3/11/15: Man of the Year Honors / Basketball Squares / Mens Seder

MoTAS Weekly NewsletterIn This Issue:

  1. CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR MAN OF THE YEAR / THANK YOU TO OUR VOLUNTEERS
  2. BASKETBALL SQUARE SEASON / SUPERBOWL SQUARES GRANTS
  3. MOTAS ANNUAL APPEAL REMINDERS/THANK YOU
  4. YOM HASHOAH CANDLES
  5. MENS SEDER – MARCH 29
  6. APRIL 12 SPEAKER MEETING: FOOD FORWARD / SUNDAY OF SERVICE
  7. HOLD THE DATES – JETHAWKS BASEBALL / GOLF TOURNAMENT
  8. IN CLOSING


1. CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR MAN OF THE YEAR / THANK YOU TO OUR VOLUNTEERS

The Men of TAS join the rest of the MRJ Western Region in celebrating our Man of the Year, Bob Levine. Bob was honored last Saturday night at the MRJ Regional Man of the Year Dinner. The contingent that came down to celebrate with Bob filled two whole tables at Temple Beth David in Westminster.

Charlie Niederman (Past President of MRJ-West), Scott Yollis (2014 MOY), Bob Levine (2015 MOY), Steve Zonis (2014 MOY), Mark Singer (Past President of MRJ-West)

MoTAS also thanks all the men that volunteered to help with the food service at the Purim Carnival: Mike Rayfield, Les Birken, Howard Miller, Rick Mervis, Mike Thornhill, Jeff Shulman, Scott Yollis. Special thanks to Bob Levin for coordinating the activity. Thank you also to all the men who weren’t on our list because they were volunteering at other booths, such as Larry Hoffman at the ticket booth. All of you are MoTAS volunteers as well (and apologies to any we missed). Additionally, the President of MoTAS ran the boardgaming activity.

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2. BASKETBALL SQUARE SEASON / SUPERBOWL SQUARES GRANTS

NCAA/Basketball Squares are on Sale! The NCAA championships are rapidly approaching, and that means it is time for Basketball Squares. The procedure is very similar to the Superbowl Squares. Basketball Squares cover the last four games in the NCAA championship: the semifinal and final games on April 4-6, 2015. Squares are $18, and adults may purchase up to 3 squares for themselves, and 3 squares for their partner. Payouts are $150 for both the halftime and final scores of each game. You can win once or twice in a game. If the board is not fully subscribed, the payout is proportional based on the number of subscribed squares. To address the possibility that all 100 squares might not be subscribed, the following is the procedure for empty squares that win: each player will make a guess as to what the total number of points will be (i.e., you add the final scores of both teams). This number will be used to settle all cases, for all games. If you purchase more than one square your “number” will apply for all your squares. Closest to actual score wins (payouts divided with ties). If there is no halftime winner, the final score prediction will still be used.

Squares must be purchased by March 25, 2015. Forms should be available in the Temple Foyer. You can also print the registration form — or register online — at the usual online home of the Squares program: http://squares.tasnorthridge-motas.org/. Remember that the real winner is Temple Ahavat Shalom. With a fully subscribed board, $900 will be available to support specific temple activities, organizations, and projects.

Superbowl Squares Grants. The Grants committee has been discussing Superbowl Squares grants, and has chosen to fund the following three activities that are unlikely to be funded otherwise: (1) a contribution to support alumni outreach from TAS to the children of TAS members attending college; (2) a gift for the students graduating from the TAS High program to encourage them to practice Judaism as they move into the real world; and (3) a contribution to purchase some “Shabbat Only” versions (which are half the weight) and large-print versions of the prayerbooks we use on Friday night — these would be made available upon request and make worship easier for those dealing with arthritis or vision problems.

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3. MOTAS ANNUAL APPEAL REMINDERS/THANK YOU

For those of you unaware, MoTAS no longer has dues. Every man at TAS is a member of MoTAS. Once a year, we send out a letter requesting the men of TAS to financially support the Men of TAS with a donation they feel is appropriate. It is less than a month since our appeal letters have gone out, and the donations are starting to come in. However, as of last Sunday’s membership meeting, under 50 members had sent in contributions … and we sent out over 350 letters. We would like to know that we truly represent the men of TAS, and the way we know that is through your support. If you haven’t contributed yet, it is easy. The support page at our website, http://support.tasnorthridge-motas.org/, provides a downloadable form you can complete, print, and mail with your check; alternatively, you can follow the link on the site and contribute online. We would welcome your financial vote of confidence — be it little or large. Help prove that our experiment in inclusivity can work. Thank you to everyone who has contributed so far; those who have contributed $100 or over will appear on our Wall of Honor at http://wallofhonor.tasnorthridge-motas.org/ (which is updated regularly).

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4. YOM HASHOAH CANDLES

The March meeting of MoTAS was the annual Yellow Candle preparation meeting, where we assemble and pack yellow Yom HaShoah candles for mailing to all congregants. Hopefully, you have received your candle by now. Yom HaShoah begins the evening of April 15 (who can forget that day), and the Men of TAS invites you to join us in lighting our candles — a congregation strong — to remember the holocaust and to keep the fight against antisemitism alive.

P.S. With the candles, we enclosed information on how to observe Yom HaShoah, as well as a calendar of events for MoTAS that extends into early 2016. We hope you’ll be able to make some of our events. We also encourage you to use the envelope enclosed with the mailing to send in a little something to help cover the cost of mailing the candles.

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5. MENS SEDER – MARCH 29

On Sunday, March 29, you are invited to join the Men of TAS at our annual Mens Seder. This special service and dinner, modeled after the traditional Passover Seder, provides a comfortable and ‘safe’ space for the men of TAS to explore and celebrate what it means to be a contemporary Jewish man. The text of our special haggadah, developed by MRJ and available at http://www.menrj.org/mrj-mens-seder, explores issues that pertain specifically to men; the service and dinner provides a place to take those issues, share them, discuss them, and wrestle with them.

Our Mens Passover Dinner will consists of traditional Passover foods — water, wine, homemade charoset, and more (maybe even gefilte fish) — as well as barbeque chicken and tri-tip from Outdoor Grill in Northridge (for what man doesn’t love barbeque).

The cost for the meal and the service is $20. The schedule is as follows:

  • 5:30pm: Sign in and snacks
  • 6:00pm: Service and dinner

Visit http://seder.tasnorthridge-motas.org to reserve in advance and pay by check or at the door, or to pay online. Reservations are necessary and are due by noon on Monday, March 23. Please invite your brothers, fathers, uncles and friends to join you. TAS affiliation is NOT required for this event.

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6. APRIL 12 SPEAKER MEETING: FOOD FORWARD / SUNDAY OF SERVICE

On Sunday, April 12, MoTAS is joining with the Social Action Committee in their regular Sunday of Service. We start at the MoTAS Meeting, where our speaker will be from Food Foward (http://foodforward.org/). Food Forward is a volunteer-powered non-profit that rescues fresh local produce that would otherwise go to waste, connecting this abundance with people in need, and inspiring others to do the same. Volunteers convene at private properties, public spaces, and farmers and wholesale markets to recover excess fruits and vegetables, donating 100% to local direct-service agencies who feed our community’s most vulnerable. Combined, our diverse distribution partners provide food to over 100,000 clients a month across Southern California.

Our speaker will be Samantha Hill, Backyard Harvest Coordinator, who is a Los Angeles native who recently moved back to California after a 6 year stint living in NYC. While she enjoyed her time living in the big apple earning a Masters Degree in Food Studies from NYU, operating a youth education program at farmers markets by day and crafting cocktails behind the bar by night, she always knew (particularly during the winter months) Southern California would eventually be where she called home again. She is thrilled to bring her experience educating students about the importance of eating fresh, local produce to Food Forward to help Southern Californian’s further appreciate and engage with the bounty of regional fruit trees we are blessed to live among.

As usual, we start with breakfast at 8:45 AM, followed by our activity review at 9:00 AM and our speaker at 10:00 PM. At this meeting, we’ll be announcing the results of the nominating committee. If you are interested in running for MoTAS office, please contact Bob Levine at pastpresident@tasnorthridge-motas.org

After a lunch break, we’ll be rejoining the Social Action crew to pick fruit from a designated household in Northridge. The picking will start at 1:00 PM and go until 3:00 PM. To RSVP, contact TAS SOS Coordinator, Shellie Turer at (818) 993-2255, or via e-mail at: PetsRPeopleToo@att.net. Space is limited to 15-20 volunteers, so sign up now!!

But wait, there’s more. That evening will be our bi-monthly Mens Only Hangout, starting at 7:00 PM for dessert and wine. This is coordinated by Dave Friedman, so if you are interested in attending, please contact Dave. Space is limited.

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7. HOLD THE DATES – JETHAWKS BASEBALL / GOLF TOURNAMENT

Start marking your calendar now for two additional significant upcoming dates:

  • Jethawks Baseball – Sunday, June 7 @ ~12 PM. I’ve had a number of requests for a MoTAS outing for a baseball game. LA Dodger games are (a) expensive, (b) crowded, and (c) often boring. Minor league games, on the other hand, are a blast — inexpensive, great seats, and loads and loads of fun. We’re in the planning stage for an outing to see the Lancaster Jethawks for a Sunday afternoon game. This will be after religious school is over, and it will be a family event. Let Daniel know at president@tasnorthridge-motas.org if you would be interested in attending or helping to organize/drive.
  • 2015 Golf Tournament – Monday, October 19. MoTAS is pleased to announce the date for the 2015 Charity Golf Tournament: Monday, October 19, 2015 at Calabasas Country Club. Please mark the date on your calendars now, and place to attend. Organizing meetings for the 2015 tournament will be starting soon; if you would like to be part of the organizing committee, please contact Barry Mann at andybarry80@yahoo.com.

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8. IN CLOSING

As always, remember that the Men of Temple Ahavat Shalom is *your* organization. Keep up to date on our activities at http://www.tasnorthridge-motas.org/ and participate. We want to serve all the men of Temple Ahavat Shalom and welcome new participants from the TAS membership. Join our Facebook group and “follow” our website. Come be part of the Men of Temple Ahavat Shalom!

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