PARKLAND, FL - Local dignitaries joined Chabad members and guests to celebrate Chabad of Parkland's grand opening at its ribbon cutting on Thursday evening at its new home on Loxahatchee Road in Parkland. Rabbi Mendy Gutnick emceed the event.
Gutnick said, "It took 450 years from the time the Torah was given to the time the first holy temple in Jerusalem was built...this is a day of tremendous celebration."
Broward County Commissioner Michael Udine presented a proclamation on behalf of Broward County celebrating Chabad of Parkland's grand opening and designating September 19 as the Michael and Betsy Brauser Chabad of Parkland Center for Jewish Life Day in Broward County, Florida. The Michael and Betsy Brauser Charitable Foundation donated over $1M to Chabad of Parkland to enable it to build its new home.
Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky also presented a proclamation on behalf of the City of Parkland congratulating the Chabad on its grand opening.
Rabbi Shuey Biston then spoke about Chabad of Parkland's goal over the last twenty years of "bringing the love, warmth and joy of Judaism to every single person" in the community. He said, "Every single Jew in our community is a member. They may not have walked in our door, but we treat them as a member and consider them members."
Biston said, "It was never about the four walls [where our programs have taken place] - - it was about the children and the families inside them."
He said, "Together, we are transforming the landscape of Parkland and Broward and Palm Beach Counties."
"It is because of you that our children will have a place to call home, a place to learn, a place to play, and experience the joy of our heritage," Biston said.
He added, "What we have built here together is your home, my home, our home...and all are welcome."