The Plan for LifeLong Living at the JCC
Sue Horwitz, MSW
Director of Senior Adult Services
A multitude of enriching opportunities, including our premiere program: Learning Throughout Life (LTL), our acclaimed Nosh ‘N Knowledge, Various Sounds of Music, Sundays @ the J and Movie Mavens series’, meet the intellectual, social and emotional needs of our fast growing adult population. The lunch component offers an opportunity for individuals to keep in touch with old friends and develop new relationships. Many members credit the JCC and Learning Throughout Life with enabling them to remain vital in their own homes and communities. Our members regularly express the importance of the JCC and these programs in their daily lives. They refer to the JCC as their “home away from home” and to the programs of our Adult Program Departments as the “living room of the JCC”. Our members often remark upon entering the building that “it’s another great day at the J”, and “Who needs a retirement community when we have the JCC?”
Many of our senior adults consider the JCC their second home. They enjoy classes, lectures, holiday celebrations, performances, trips and senior adult club events. The JCC is a warm, welcoming environment where the seniors celebrate their simchas and share their losses. They are comfortable talking with one another and with staff, developing a supportive cohort of individuals on whom they can depend and with whom they can exchange ideas and resources. The senior programs and services will continue to address the physical, cognitive, social and creative interests of our adult community; drawing them out of their homes and in to our inviting, spirited environment where their lives will be enriched.
Early Childhood Education & Enrichment
JCC Preschool Director Designee
A wide array of educational, nurturing and enrichment opportunities, including our Best In Class Bright Beginnings Preschool, our acclaimed after school Enrichment programs, including Fun ‘N’ Munch, STEM Enrichment, No-Bake Cooking & Arts, American Red Cross Swim Lessons and other Enrichments provide a warm and stimulating atmosphere in a safe, child-centered environment where students learn by doing. Hands-on experiences, socialization and play are highly valued as learning media. Building a strong identity in the child is emphasized, through teaching and celebrating life as well as holidays and cultures. Enrichment classes encourage brain building experiences, helping to develop the child with new life skills to assist in their growth.
The JCC is a place where families come together to form one large family with our members and staff. It is an important aspect to our community. The JCC is a wonderfully diverse place where all families are welcome and appreciated for their support. Our ability and opportunity to continue to positively impact the children and families within our community will be enhanced with the expansion of the JCC and our Bright Beginnings Preschool.
Read some of Our School Mom's reviews
“My daughter Sydney attended the Bright Beginnings Preschool at the JCC. She was afraid to be away from me, but the staff was so nurturing and sensitive to her needs. I always left there feeling secure that she was cared for and nurtured.” Mindy S.
“As a working mother who drops her child to the Bright Beginnings Preschool every morning, only to dash off to work, I express my deepest gratitude for the impeccable organization made to receive students and care for them. I truly believe that this can only materialize with a formidable management headed by such commendable people. I appreciate the continued work, support and teaching of the Bright Beginnings Preschool staff in providing finer education for my child and future generations.” Ruchi M. Ruchi M.
Cultural & Community Experiences
An expanding cohort of discerning adults, “baby boomers”, are visiting and joining the JCC, seeking more intellectual stimulation and activity than previous generations. These constituents are seeking ways to spend “the second half of our lives.” From a handful of “baby boomers” on our first trip 5 years ago, this program now serves hundreds of participants each year. We are expanding the program to include not only our best in class trip experiences, but new socialization and entertainment programs and events, as well as volunteer opportunities for our “baby boomers”.
We are so fortunate to live in a wonderful, diverse community that can share its rich histories and cultures for the betterment of all of us. Together we can prepare our JCC for a vital and relevant future.
Diane Mael, MSW
Director of Adult Services
The Jewish Community Center of Middlesex County is one place where you can get it all – take classes, workout, see a film or music performance, enjoy a lecture, go swimming, play basketball, learn Pickleball, meet your friends, sweat through Zumba or find your center in Tai Chi. There is, literally, something for everyone.
Keeping our JCC vibrant, healthy and strong is a lot like keeping our minds and bodies in good shape. It takes a great deal of attention, focus, commitment and maintenance. Not only do we want to expand our physical facility to meet the challenges of the future, we also need to maintain our well-trained staff that keeps abreast of the latest trends in fitness and recreation and is responsive to your needs.
Mind, Body And Spirit
LIVE WELL @ the JCC is an exercise and educational program focusing on the over 55 population, emphasizing HEALTH (promoting the length and quality of your life by interacting with your environment and positive choices), FITNESS (focusing on prevention by decreasing your risk for chronic diseases such as diabetes, osteoporosis, hypertension and heart disease), and WELLNESS (through the spirit, the mind, and the body integrating and constantly changing with the environment).
Program Coordinator, Live Well @ The JCC
The classes we have introduced in the past 2 years include Tai Chi, Zumba Gold, Chair Yoga, BeFit Strength, and Line Dancing. Lectures included The Big Picture of Health - how plant based eating affects our bodies, Reiki, Low Vision, Powering your Brain - Strategies to improve your memory, The Relationship between Hearing and Cognition, and CarFit. This fall we are offering Lo Impact Cardio Fusion, Tai Chi, Mindfulness and other classes. Lectures will include Jin Shin Jyutsu and “It Starts with Food”- (nutritional FAQs). The new Center for LifeLong Living will provide Live Well with dedicated space for our exercise classes and lectures, will enable Live Well to function year round to the appreciation of the members and participants, and continue to keep these members “Living Well” into the future.
Health & Wellness
The JCC is ready to help you and your family become healthier and happier than ever! From fitness programs to youth & adult sports programs, we are here to provide you with all the tools necessary to see results and reach your goals. JCC fitness programs are designed to help meet the individual needs of our members. If you want to be healthier, feel better, meet new people, spend quality time with your family or connect with your community, our facility offers a friendly, professional and supportive environment. Whether you are a new exerciser or a seasoned athlete, our staff will design a health and wellness plan tailored to meet your needs.
Our community embraces good health and wellness. The JCC promotes wellness in many ways to suit your preferences and lifestyle: A state of the art fitness center, with separate centers for weights, cardio training, youth and teen exercise and exercise class facilities on the main floor and gym, and our exclusive private Wellness Studio, located on the second floor of the JCC building. Do it on your own, or work with one of our professional, experienced Personal Trainers to set and help you achieve your individual goals.
Director of Operations, Health & Wellness
Director of Aquatics
The highly lauded JCC Aquatics Department offers the highest quality aquatics and swim program in the area, teaching children and others to become comfortable and confident in the water, and providing opportunities to become elite athletes and to develop skills and confidence, in a healthy and warm environment. JCC swimmers learn that they have the power to accomplish their goals, and develop discipline and dedication, while promoting good health through regular exercise. Aquatics opportunities abound for all ages, levels and interests, from infants to older adults. The offerings includes American Red Cross swim classes, JCC Blue Dolphins Swim Team, Stroke & Turn Clinic, water aerobics, private swim lessons for all levels, lifeguard training and open swim time.
Jewish Outreach & Programming
The JCC continues to be the center of community outreach, as the host organization and venue for many community events, including the Sukkot Community Dinner, the Edison Township Menorah Lighting and Hanukkah Celebration, the Community Purim Carnival Extravaganza (with area synagogues) and the Interfaith Yom Hashoah Commemoration, a collaboration between the JCC and the Metuchen-Edison Area Interfaith Clergy Association.
We offer interactive experiences for holidays in a welcoming environment, providing programs for interfaith couples and families. We look forward to offering a Teen Service Corps program, facilitating social engagement and interaction, as well as promoting social action and social justice.
Our outreach extends to the most vulnerable in our community, through the highly lauded JCC Connects on the Road. This community outreach program brings adult, Jewish, music, holiday, cultural and arts programming throughout the year to residents of nursing and assisted living facilities in Middlesex and Monmouth counties who are physically unable to come to the JCC and participate in the activities at the JCC. These events also are brought to libraries, Jewish Centers, Community meeting spaces in adult residential developments and Senior Centers throughout both counties and are open to the entire community. It is our hope to reach more than 750 retired adults, often on fixed incomes, at approximately 24 locations through these outreach efforts.
Esther Fendrick, JD
Director of Jewish Outreach and Programming
Our focus is to foster and build relationships with members of the community both within and outside of the physical walls of the JCC. The most important word in that sentence is COMMUNITY. Community service is central to our mission at the JCC. The Marion and Norman Tanzman Center for LifeLong Living will be a fabulous community oriented space that will strengthen and enhance our ability to serve and meaningfully impact more members of our community.
Programs For Everyone And Every Interest
The program offerings at the JCC are varied and inclusive. There is something for everyone. A sampling of our programs include screening of the film “Havana Curveball” and lecture by Sandra Levinson, Director of the Center for Cuban Studies. Jewish Life on Campus” lecture by Rabbi Esther Reed of Rutgers Hillel. Lecture and screening the film “Glenn Miller: America’s Musical Hero”, by the film’s Post-Production Coordinator, presentation of “Rhythm & Jews: The History of Jews in Rock-n-Roll Music”, including a lecture and presentation and dinner. The JCC presented a three-week Beatles Film Festival in honor of the 50th Anniversary of “Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”, screening “Magical Mystery Tour”, “Yellow Submarine” and “Let it Be”. Dr. Siddhu Nadkarni lectured on the similarities between Hinduism and Jewish Mysticism (Kabbalah). Moshe Levi, the Shaliach (Emissary) from JAFI lecturing on the viability of Israel and Palestinian two-state solution, and “Israel’s Friends and Foes: The 2017 Middle East Realignment.”
Stay and Play” is our new philosophy. Come for a lecture or exercise in the morning, meet a friend for lunch, and then come to a music program in the afternoon. Play Canasta and Bridge. Play Mah Jongg and Pickleball. Come for a current events discussion and stay for coffee and a refreshing swim.
We constantly seek to help make our JCC a great example of what sociologists refer to as the “third place” in your life. After your home (your “first place”) and your office (your “second place”), the “third place” is the space where people in the community gather outside of home and work. Ideally that space is safe, casual, comfortable and fun! This is your community center! Make it the “third place” you can spend your whole day! We have never been more excited about the JCC’s future – and we want your participation in that future.