On Thursday, September 23, 2021, music and laughter filled the air of the Boulder JCC campus as the community celebrated the 5th Anniversary of its Oreg Avenue location. The west lawn and Grant Family Patio, which typically plays host to youth soccer classes, Cherryvale Day Camp, adult yoga, and more, were transformed into an outdoor event space for 600 guests, equipped with a stage that featured performances by Jeff and Paige and The Good Kind, food and drink stations from local favorites Ash’Kara, Blackbelly, DV8 Distillery, Moe’s Bagels, Pint’s Peak, Temaki Tornado, and The Village Nosh, lawn games, bubble art, and even Big Wheel Beverages, a DIY frozen ice drinks machine!
At the core of the event was celebrating a vision of what could be built by a community. Since opening its doors in 2016, the Boulder JCC has been a convener for the arts, education, community service, farming, and connection, offering an endless variety of programs for every age. It has welcomed tens of thousands of the Boulder population to the campus, through a wide breadth of cultural programs, the Early Childhood Center, Cherryvale Day Camp, New to Boulder networking events, Milk and Honey Farm, Boulder Jewish Teen Initiative, mitzvah nights, and more. It has seen the incredible Milk and Honey Farm thrive, and act as a unique learning space, in addition to its ability to provide thousands of pounds of produce to donate locally each year. During a crucial moment in this five-year time span, the Boulder JCC weathered the pandemic, pivoting many programs to a virtual format, reopening child care and day camps, and keeping teen programs running to provide continuity for those in grades 8 – 12.
That being said, it was only fitting to share this milestone with the entire Boulder community, as it would not have been possible without the support of its community members, dedicated volunteers and donors, Early Childhood Center families, program participants, board members, and staff.
One esteemed guest at the event, Doron Krakow, President & CEO of the JCC Association of North America, summed it up best in his weekly newsletter when he wrote, “Boulder is home to one of the most successful, dynamic, and innovative JCCs I have had the good fortune to visit. I arrived here yesterday to participate in the J’s fifth anniversary celebration—an outdoor event marking the first time most members of the community had come together in person since the start of the pandemic. On a picture-perfect afternoon, which preceded a dramatic sunset over the Rocky Mountains, just miles to the west of the JCC, hundreds of community members—mostly young families—came out to play, to dance, to eat, and to celebrate the centerpiece of their Jewish lives.”
All in all, it was a memorable evening in celebration of a special community, without whom these five years would not have been possible. It can only encourage us to dream even bigger for the next five!