Afternoon Shabbat Luncheon and “Fiddler on the Roof” Sing a Long Matinee

Saturday May 7th at 12pm

We will depart from our usual Friday evening Shabbat and hold a Saturday afternoon Shabbat potluck followed by a Sing-A-Long to the classic movie Fiddler on the Roof. The names of the hosts and directions will be sent when you RSVP to Shoshanah ( by May 5th. Vax cards thru 1 booster required; if you have already submitted yours, you’re fine. If not, please send it to Shoshanah when making your reservation.
The BBQ will be lit with kosher hot dogs, hamburgers and corn on the cob supplied by our hosts. Wine and soft drinks will be available also. As is our tradition, everyone is encouraged to bring their favorite appetizer, other entree or dessert to share at the Shabbat luncheon. At noon, after the kiddush and the hamotzi, we will enjoy our lunch, followed  by our Matinee with fresh popcorn at 2pm. If anyone is in a mood for games, Cornhole and Darts will also be available. This promises to be a wonderful family afternoon……please come and enjoy! Tradition!!!
A little background on Fiddler on the Roof….
These are the stories written by Sholom Aleichem that takes place in 1905, in the small Jewish Village of Anatevka in Imperialist Russia, where lives are as precarious as a “
Fiddler on a Roof.”

Chaim Topol stars as Tevye, a Jewish milkman whose life revolves around “Tradition.” A little known fact is that Topol played Tevye over 3500 times on Broadway and “Tzeitel” his eldest daughter was played by Bette Middler in the Broadway play.     Rabbi Debi will lead us in some wonderful sing-a-longs of songs we have all grown up with……who can resist to singing-a-long to …” If I were a Rich Man”……well…at least we can dream!!

President's Message

Dear Community,
Spring has been very active for SYVJC. We met on March 18th for our first in-person Shabbat in so long. Thank you to Chris and David Seltzer for their hospitality; it was a lovely Shabbat in great part due to them. For the first time in 2 years, our community met for Pesach seder. Rabbi Debi was beyond fabulous. She incorporated humor and music into the traditional liturgy, and it was delightful (maybe the first seder ever where I wasn’t anxious for it to be over!). The room was set up in a U shape so we could all enjoy each other’s company. Shoshanah Schwartz and her team of Jeff Winter, Ariadne Weaver, Susan Tova, Lawrence Clevenson and Lenore Fusano worked hard to transform St. Mark’s into a warm and inviting venue. Yasher Koach to Sho and all who assisted!! Chef Brooke of Los Olivos Café delighted us with a rich and delicious chicken soup, homemade gefilte fish and brisket that was so tender and delicious it didn’t need a knife. Thank you to Sam and Shawnda Marmorstein who donated all the wine; at the restaurant you can try the Bernat wines, they don’t disappoint.
May is looking to be an active month for the community. Your Board has been working diligently to create programming. Here is a summation and details appear elsewhere in the newsletter!!
  • Saturday, May 7th is a Kehillah Shabbat lunch and movie. Read all about it; it looks to be a fun filled event!
  • Saturday, May 14th is the first Bar Mitzvah in our community in years. Details elsewhere and RSVP required but all are invited.
  • Thursday, May 18th is a security training held in conjunction with St. Mark’s. The reality of our world today is the necessity for security and for training for all members. Thank you, Jeff Winter, for your hard work in organizing this event.
  • Friday, May 20th is our Rabbi Shabbat; location provided when you RSVP. 
  • Saturday, May 21st is the final Adult Education for the year. Again, if enrolled or interested, email Shoshanah to RSVP.
Please remember, if you go to and scroll down a bit on that first page, you’ll find a calendar with all the above dates listed. And if want to donate in honor of, remembrance of, refuah shlemah or any other reason, you’ll find under the Donate tab the following options: 
  • President/Rabbi Special Needs Fund
  • Siddur (prayer book) with your name inscribe
  • Adult Education
  • Security Fund 
  • Community Goodwill Fund with the following options: Shabbat Dinner, Machzor (Prayer Book for High Holiday), Tikkun Olam (social action), and Passover Fund.
Be well everyone and should you need to contact me, you can email me at
With gratitude,

Susie Pierson
President SYVJC

Our Annual Seder on April 16th Was a Fun Event

We had many familiar faces, and some new ones too, and everyone seemed to be having a good time. In addition to the usual Chad Gaya and Dayenu, Rabbi provided the lyrics and led everyone in rousing versions of the Gilligan’s Island theme, as well as “My Favorite Things”, both modified for Passover.  Those songs plus Rabbi Debi’s “Mad Libs” made for some pretty funny moments. 

View the Photo Gallery Online!

BIG THANX go to the following: 
Jeff Winter and Lenore Fusano, who not only helped set up and clean up, but also performed admirably as wine stewards. All that was missing was the white towel over their forearms. 

My husband David was also very helpful with set up, shopping, clean up and general moral support. Since this was the first Seder I have ever coordinated, all that he did was very important. 

Shawnda Marmorstein, like Elijah, was there in spirit, and provided me with all kinds of long distance support, answers, notes etc. etc. She has run the Seder for many years, but is currently living in Canada with her family. 

So that everyone knew who everyone else was, Ari Weaver created name tags; 

Susie Pierson and Ron Margolis checked people in with smiles and warmth, 

Susan Tova and Ari Weaver artfully arranged lovely flowers made the room festive. Susan’s husband, Lawrence Clevenson, helped them with this task. They even provided one arrangement of sunflowers, which is the national flower of the Ukraine, with blue and yellow ribbons on the vase, as those are the colors of the Ukranian flag.

Our paid staff, Rosie Garcia and Maggie Leor knew exactly what to do to set up, serve and clean up and did their usual incredible job. The Los Olivos Wine Merchant and Café catered the meal and donated the wine; their chef, Brooke Stockwell created a delicious meal, all from scratch. With her helper, Crystal Barrois,they put out a buffet with Bubbe quality brisket, chicken and sides. There also was gefilte fish, chicken soup with a fluffy matzo ball and a flourless chocolate delight to top off a wonderful meal. If you want more of this good cooking, check out this restaurant which is right around the corner from St. Mark’s in Los Olivos.
Our security detail, Eddie Hsueh and Brian Koppenjan, both retired sheriff’s deputies, made us feel secure.

Next year in Jerusalem, or if we can’t get there, in Los Olivos!
Shoshanah Schwartz
SYVJC Vice President, Programming

Left to Right: Eytan, Adi, Jen & David

You are cordially invited to celebrate with us as Eytan Kokorowski becomes a bar mitzvah, Saturday May 14 at 10am at St. Mark’s in Los Olivos. If possible, please email Jen by May 7 at to let us know you’ll be there to share our joy. After the service please join us as we say Kiddush over the wine and the hamotzi over the challah.
—Jen, David, Adi, and Eytan

Security Training -- A joint effort of the SYVJC and the St. Mark’s communities
Wednesday, May 18th at 6:00 pm

Special Safety Training and Instruction by Detective Kouremetis-Santa Barbara Special Investigations Bureau.

Noshes, Nibbles & Beverages at 6:00 pm followed by the program at 6:30 pm at St Marks in Los Olivos. If you would like to bring a plate of heavy hors d’oeuvres, please let Shoshanah know at by May 16th.

 Detective Kouremetis is Santa Barbara Sheriff’s department specialist in Terrorism, active shooter events and forensic investigations of hate crimes. 
 He will lead us in a discussion and video training to increase our awareness and knowledge of best practice techniques in a threatening circumstance.  
The past several years have seen a marked rise in Anti-Semitism and hate related events throughout our country. Your Board of the SYVJC is very concerned for our collective safety and security during these times. Towards this end, we have:
  1. Revised and updated all of the Congregation’s liability and risk related policies and coverage.
  2. Assured that we have formal trained security at our major events. 
  3. Providing awareness and security training for the entire Congregation so we can support each other in keeping the Santa Ynez Valley a safe and supportive environment for all to worship and gather freely.   
Please attend this important event….all family members are welcome!

Susie Margolis Pierson
President SYVJC

Adult Education - May 21st

Last Melton Adult Ed Class postponed to May 21st at 10:00 am

The location will be shared with those who
RSVP to by May 18th

If you would like to share something humorous, inspirational, and/or thought provoking please send it to Shoshanah Schwartz at by the newsletter deadline of May 8th, for the next newsletter.  We are looking forward to some VERY interesting submissions.
From Jay Carsman…..

Dear Friends,
 It would be nice to let the Santa Ynez Valley Jewish Community and other folks know that they can help Ukraine by visiting Help Humanitarian Efforts in Ukraine campaign to see a list of the non profits which will benefit. This is thru

Jewish Free Loan

Jewish Free Loan has recently expanded its service area to include Santa Barbara County, offering 0%, interest, no fee personal/emergency loans to those who need assistance. Loans can be used for rent, moving expenses, medical or dental bills, car repair, childcare, debt consolidation and more. Applicants must have a steady income. Loans for up to $15,000 are available with guarantors. Visit to learn more and apply or call 323-761-8830. 

Mark Your Calendar

  • May 14th 10am Eytan Kokorowski becomes a Bar Mitzvah
  • May 18th 6:30 pm Security Training
  • May 20th 5:30pm Rabbi Shabbat
  • May 21st  10 am 4th Melton Adult Ed Class postponed to this date
  • June 12th time and location TBA Annual Meeting
The Santa Ynez Valley Jewish Community offers Adult Education and other Jewish activities for all in our community. If you require financial assistance to participate in any of these non-fundraising activities, we welcome you to contact our board President,  Susie Pierson

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SYVJC · PO Box 135 · Los Olivos, CA 93441-0135 · USA