VENICE, FL. — SHMAIS.com has learned that The Chabad Jewish Center of Venice & North Port, Florida, directed by Rabbi & Mrs. Sholom Ber Schmerling is getting ready to celebrate eight years of service to the community, in a grand way. Chabad has just purchased more than four acres of land on Jacaranda Blvd., a main artery in town to house its new facility.
Originally launched in a living room and transferred six years ago to its current store front location on US 41, Chabad’s programs are full and expanding. The purchase will enable the Center to serve more individuals and families and expand its diverse social, educational and religious programming.
"As we continue to grow, expand and inspire, we also continue our commitment to maintaining an environment that serves the needs of the Jewish community in south Sarasota County," said Rabbi Sholom Ber Schmerling, "It's a real challenge maintaining a wide array of programs in our current space. It's too small."
Plans for the site include construction of a state of the art 10,000 square foot facility that will house a Synagogue, social hall, youth wing with classrooms and multimedia children's library, commercial kitchen and administrative offices.
The fundraising and purchase of the site are a testament to the passionate grassroots following the Center has generated with its dedicated, warm and inclusive approach to Judaism. For years, Chabad leased space for its holiday celebrations, programs and highly acclaimed Camp Gan Israel and struggled to secure adequate seating. The first step towards the building project, was made possible with a generous grant by Mr. Moshe Tabicinic facilitated by Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky of Lubavitch Headquarters.
This land purchase could not have come at a more opportune time; it will secure a sound base for Chabad with which to continue providing its vital services to the community. It’s a place of permanence for Chabad, a place where all Jews in South Sarasota County can call home.
When the need for a larger and more prominent space became evident, several community members joined Rabbi Schmerling in the creation of an advisory committee, which spent a great deal of time to plan the purchase and raise the funds to purchase the land. A special thank you to Robert Goldman, from Michael Saunders & Company, who selflessly gave of his time, energy and resources to ensure the acquisition of the land. Many special thanks to the generous donors who made the land purchase