Nearly 400 people attended the Grand Opening Celebration on Nov. 15 at the Waldfogel Health Center of Aviv Centers for Living, a beautiful new 22-acre campus dedicated to providing the highest quality care for the community’s frail elderly population.
The evening began with the placement of mezuzot onto the outdoor and indoor entrances to the building. Rabbi Baruch HaLevi of Congregation Shirat Hayam remembered the late Ruth Paster, who worked so tirelessly on behalf of the elderly in the community. The mezuzot are dedicated to Paster. A mezuzah sits on the doorpost of a Jewish home and contains a piece of parchment with the Shma, a Jewish prayer.
“This mezuzah embodies what Ruthie was all about: a strong Jewish identity. This transforms a house into a home,” HaLevi said.
Stephen Neff, chief executive officer, thanked those who gathered to celebrate “this much anticipated center for life.”
He recognized the many leaders of Aviv who brought the center to this point.
Eric Levy, chairman of the Aviv board honored past presidents and board members. They lauded Louis Rudolph, for all he has done over the last 40 years with a street sign, “Lou Rudolph Way,” that connects the Woodbridge building to Waldfogel.
Acknowledging partners, the North Suburban JCC and the Jewish Heritage Center, now in residence at Aviv after years of being “true wandering Jews,” Levy said the presence of partners, the new location and beautiful community spaces create a true center for Jewish life at Aviv.
Alan Pierce, president of the Jewish Heritage Center said, “We are very pleased to have a permanent home especially with the living memory of the residents who helped build and shape this community, and to share with the preschool that further connects the generations and appreciates all we have to offer each other.”