Rabbi Alan Rabishaw begins the celebration by celebrating Havdalah, the candle-lighting ceremony that marks the end of the Jewish sabbath and the beginning of the regular week.
Nora and Jim Newman, two members of the event steering committee and chief cooks of the authentic cuisine, garbed up for the event in front of a display put together by Rachel Wallace, a member of the coordinating team.
Carol Catanari, a former president of the synagogue, samples the home-cooked Cuban cuisine and other fine foods prepared by several area restaurants and donated as part of the fund-raising activities.
Among those attending were (from r.) Maida Simpson, who was born in Cuba, Synagogue President Doug Robins and his wife, Rhonda.
Gala Auctioneer Steve Polito prepares to gavel down one of the items in the live auction. Items ranged from designer purses to week-long vacations and gourmet meals prepared by congregants.
Congregants, including Nicki Wampold and Richard Ziman, battle it out during the auction – in this case for a limited number of gourmet dinners to be provided at Rabbi Alan and Laura Rabishaw’s home.
Debbie Nagano and Alan Friedman, another past president, take part in the silent auction that also helped raise funds to support the synagogue’s activities.
Congregation members chant the Havdalah prayer prior to extinguishing the candle.