Sid Jacobson JCC – the only full-service JCC on Long Island’s North Shore – welcomed hundreds of people on May 4 at “Eat. Bid. Laugh!,” a fundraising gala that raised nearly $1.6 million for Kehilla Scholarships and the Sheldon A. Sinett BASICS Fund for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the past three years of the same event.
Kehilla Scholarships are a way to ensure children with special needs (ages 5 – 21) can experience a summer of a lifetime at the JCC’s Camp Kehilla at Henry Kaufmann Campgrounds.
BASICS – an incubator fund – supports innovative social service programs developed by SJJCC staff in response to community needs. Some of the programs include Camp Kehilla, The Nancy Marks Cancer Wellness Center, Program Without Walls, and The Community Needs Bank, to name a few.
The fundraiser and auction at the Garden City Hotel featured nationally-renowned Mike Birbiglia, a comedian, storyteller, director, and actor. Birbiglia, who has starred in two Netflix specials, was the recipient of the 2017 Kurt Vonnegut Award for humor.
“To see so many friends, members, staff, board, and guests gathered together to laugh with one another again after three years away due to the pandemic was a blessing in and of itself,” said David Levy, Sid Jacobson JCC’s board president. “Compounded with such an outpouring of generosity warms the hearts of everyone involved in this huge undertaking. On behalf of everyone at Sid Jacobson, our collective thanks are extended to everyone who came out and contributed to such a worthwhile cause and had such a fun evening together.”
“I was absolutely thrilled to be with such a great crowd for such a worthwhile cause,” said Birbiglia. “The work done by everyone at Sid Jacobson JCC for this event is without comparison. I was just happy to be able to play a small role in its success and it was great to see people gathered together again after so much time spent apart. Kudos to the staff and everyone who contributed to making the night possible and who gave so openly to help members of their community on Long Island.”
To see a list of restaurants and sponsor organizations for the event, click here.