Rockland JCC to open on Shabbat


(JTA ) — A Jewish community center in New York State has decided to open its fitness center and gym on Friday evenings and Saturdays.

The 36-member board of the Rockland JCC in West Nyack voted overwhelmingly to remain open on Shabbat, the Journal-News reported.

The new hours will begin April 1, according to the newspaper, but are not yet reflected on the JCC’s website. The vote was announced in an e-mail sent to members last week.

"The Board sought to balance the expectations and needs of a very diverse Jewish community with our need to run a financially viable and accessible organization that would be around for many years to come," said David Kirschtel and Joel Zbar, the CEO and board president, respectively, in the e-mail.

No cash transactions or sales will take place during Shabbat hours, including closing vending machines and paying in advance for spa treatments, according to the newspaper. In addition, Jewish staff members will not be forced to work on Shabbat.

In recent years, several JCCs nationwide have made the decision to remain open on Shabbat, mostly for financial reasons.


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