Fundraisers Continue to save the Jewish Center

Posted by JackSpiegel

The Van Cortlandt Jewish Center located at 3880 Sedgwick Ave, Bronx, NY; will be holding its annual Variety Show/Lunch/Chinese Auction on Sunday, January 27th. This will be its eighth year and we hope it will not be the last time the VCJC opens its doors to its community for what has become a popular community-wide event.

For years the Van Cortlandt Jewish Center (VCJC) rented space to both the JASA Senior Center and the Department of Education. The DOE rescinded its contract with the VCJC in September, leaving it without the more than $100,000 in annual rental income that has made up a large portion of their income. Without this income there is not enough revenue coming in to be able to keep their doors open for much longer, and although our last event was successful and raised approximately $12,000, we have yet to find a new tenant and are still falling well short of our financial needs. This next event, coupled with an online auction being run Jan 11th through Jan 27th (, will hopefully raise enough money to keep the VCJC’s doors open long enough to find another renter for the space vacated by the DOE.

Doors will open on the 27th at 11am, with free admission for the Chinese Auction. From 11am to 12 noon anyone who wishes to can browse the Chinese Auction (otherwise known as a pick-your-prize raffle) and enter to win the prizes of their choosing. Raffle tickets are in denominations of $1, $2, $5 and $10 for a chance to win an entry for every prize. Winners need not be present, they will be notified. Examples of raffle prizes are gift certificates to restaurants and other establishments, jewelry, designer handbags, novelty gift items, sports memorabilia and much more!

Lunch will be served at 12 noon, at which time all those who made reservations stay and enjoy a sumptuous hot Chinese-style buffet catered by Ginger Grill. Appetizers, salad, chicken, beef and vegetable dishes abound. John Turdo of Simply Magic will visit your table and astound you as you eat with close-up illusion magic.

After lunch, enjoy two wonderful shows - a full magic show by John Turdo and then a musical interlude by Tom Smith (who we're told sounds incredibly like Frank Sinatra). Tom presents a fast-paced, entertaining retrospective of performers such as George M. Cohan, Al Jolson, Sophie Tucker, Louis Armstrong, Irving Berlin, Rodgers & Hammerstein and Frank Sinatra in this informative, humorous and interactive set.

Top the day off with coffee, tea and dessert, coupled by the drawing of the Chinese Auction raffle prizes! The cost of the variety show, lunch and dessert is only $40 per person, and this includes one free $1 raffle ticket to be used (or upgraded) for the prize of your choice. For reservations (by Jan 21st) or more information, please call 718-884-6105.

If anyone who can’t make the event but still wants to help the VCJC’s fundraising efforts, they can visit (Jan 11th - 27th) and bid on one of our unique auction items.

One-hundred percent of the proceeds from both the online auction and the variety show/lunch/Chinese Auction will go to help the Van Cortlandt Jewish Center keep its doors open so that it may continue to offer twice-daily and holiday prayer services, space for the JASA Senior Center, and NCSY youth group and NA meetings, as well as the lectures, holiday parties, Sisterhood events and community-wide events such as this one. Please show your support for this neighborhood icon, in existence for over 60 years.