By Brogan Gerhart
MEOR hosted its annual 5K and barbecue to welcome this university’s students back on a warm and sunny Labor Day afternoon.
The start of the 5K marked the beginning of the festivities as multiple attendees of the launch party took to the streets to show their support for the organization. Last year, the run commemorated 9/11 and honored the late Mark Rosenberg, who died in the World Trade Center. The race was included this year to uphold the tradition of the event.
The event attracted many members of the campus’ Jewish community and provided them with the opportunity to mingle with MEOR leaders and representatives.
“We try to create environments that are warm, non-judgmental and accessible to students of all Jewish backgrounds,” MEOR Executive Director Rabbi Ari Koretzky said. “This has been a tradition now for quite a few years and is a great way to kick off the new school year and welcome a lot of student who are already involved, as well as provide a venue to give new students a sense of what [MEOR] is.”
The barbecue commenced towards the conclusion of the run, and many members of the Jewish community of all ages gathered to talk with friends and family.
Small games of frisbee and football sprang up on the lawn throughout the night. Some people at the event even gathered to watch an impromptu magic show.
“I think it’s really beautiful giving [students] the opportunities to explore what things connect them to their heritage, and then giving them the tools to do that,” said MEOR Assistant Director Devora Jaye. “I work with the best staff and we have a lot of fun.”
This university’s students also expressed their feelings towards MEOR as the night progressed.
“What’s wonderful about MEOR is that they are very accepting of all different levels of Judaism,” junior engineering major Devin Cain said. “They welcome everyone with wide, open arms.”
Following the end of another 5K race and barbecue, Koretzky said MEOR will continue to innovate appeal to students throughout the upcoming year.