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Why is it called #NotTheGala?

Renee Eder on Monday, November 9, 2015
A gala is typically a formal affair, held for charity fundraisers or special events. Both ladies and gentlemen typically wear formal attire, since there’s a strict etiquette associated with these types of events. Women wear extravagant gowns and glitzy accessories, while men wear a jacket, matching pants, and highly polished shoes. . .even if it's outside their comfort zone. 
Each fall, since the J was established in 1980,  we’ve brought members, supporters, and friends of the J together to celebrate our connections in the larger Jewish community and emphasize and celebrate our connections with Israel. The evening also acknowledges and thanks all the members of our Trustee Circle and Chai Society for their annual, philanthropic leadership that is the cornerstone of our ability to foster a strong community based on Jewish values.  
The event has taken many forms over the years…a brunch, a murder mystery, silent auctions, and galas. Over the past few years, it seems everyone has come to think of our fall event as a big, fancy, expensive to attend, and expensive to host “gala.” So, as we celebrate our 35th year, our "NotTheGala event, has evolved to become a classy, yet casual, event that still features your favorite foods and entertainment, without the formal feel.     
This year, on November 14 at 7pm, we hope you'll join us at the J for an Israeli-style rockin’ good time! The event will feature the following:  
  • Concert by Capaim, performing popular Israeli and Jewish music; 
  • Trustee Recognition; 
  • Presentation of the Eleanor Sue Finkelstein Award for Special Needs to Andrea Vavonese; 
  • Open bar with signature drinks; 
  • Kosher Dinner: Israeli cuisine and NY-style deli;  
  • Dessert reception
Everyone is welcome, and the dress is smart, casual attire. Tickets are $118 each (not tax-deductible). Young Leaders (40 and under) are $72 each. #NotTheGala celebrates and furthers our vision of fostering Jewish Connection, Community and Peoplehood through quality opportunities for every individual to explore the boundless potential of Jewish life.
You can purchase tickets by mail, at the front desk, or online. We hope you will consider supporting this vital fundraiser with your attendance and your participation. For more information about #NotTheGala, please visit or contact Michelle Pearlstein at  We hope to see you there! 
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