When we saw pictures of the property that we ultimately purchased in Silver Creek (part of Park City), the first thing that came to mind was, “we could have parties in the barn”. And so, on July 7th, 2022 we did just that. A casual “friendraiser” for the Jewish community of Park City sponsored by Shalom Utah – the Jewish Federation of Utah. About 75 people attended and many were happily surprised to learn that there were so many fellow Jews in the area. Since many are part-timers, they really had not connected with the community and likely didn’t have any intention to do so. Family vacation time is filled with children and grandchildren and it doesn’t leave much room for other things.
However, we Jews seem to have a desire to know others in our community – Jewish and others. But we particularly like having a connection to the Jewish community. It’s in our kishkas! So when the offer was made, they showed up. And it was a great success. The party included new as well long established people, full-timers and part-timers, retired and working folks, and every type of sports enthusiast that you can imagine. In Park City, the question “What do you do” is answered with hiking, biking, skiing, etc…not one’s profession. Meeting others with similar interests is always fun and creates lasting friendships. We met and munched on popcorn, had drinks to cool down, and heard from Alex Shapiro, the head of the Federation in Utah, Ellen Silver, head of Jewish Family Services, and the local rabbis.
Over time, when Jews move into a new area and the community starts to grow, a wonderful thing happens. We act. We create things – be it hospitals and educational centers in larger cities, or local nonprofit organizations in smaller towns. We notice the needs and we take action. Again, it’s just in our kishkas!! We aren’t the only ones to do so and we are happy to join in efforts with other communities, but we do in fact act. And we improve our towns in the process making it more attractive for others to come. And so it goes and the cycle continues.
And that’s what is happening in Utah – in particular Park City. The Utah Jewish Federation is at the center of this growth and works its magic to connect the various nonprofits and other organizations. Jewish Family Service, PJ Library, synagogues, and more. Whatever you might need will be found here. What’s wonderful is that the Jewish community is fully integrated with the other religious and non-religious communities in terms of supporting each other with welfare and other needs. Of course, it’s always easier in smaller cities to do this and Utah is a good example.
So a simple party in a barn leads to connections which leads to friendships and community support and involvement with all kinds of improvements for the lives of everyone here. What could be better than being part of that! We were honored to host and look forward to further events.
Max Morris and Bob Hale