SJCC celebrates 90 years

Nisky student designed new logo for Schenectady Jewish Community Center

A yearlong celebration began at the Schenectady Jewish Community Center, as Dec. 21, 2011, marks 90 years off community involvement.

The 90th anniversary event for the Schenectady JCC kicked off at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 19, with elected officials and community members in attendance for the ribbon cutting and unveiling of the new logo designed by Niskayuna High School senior Amy Yao. The center also honored three of its members over 90 years old that have played an important role at the center Robert Ludwig and Marilyn and Harry Sofer.

Starting in 1921 on the corner of Germania Avenue and Albany Street in Schenectady, the Schenectady Jewish Community Center now supports a bustling membership in a modern facility.

It really is a community center in that people don't just come here to exercise, some do, but most people who come here to exercise will return later in the evening to watch a film or they're taking a ceramics class," said Sharon Cutler, president of SJCC. "We have representing all different ages we have all different religions and nationalities and it is really a cross section of the community."

Yao, who is also a member of SJCC, won the contest held among students of Melissa Leach's advanced graphic arts class. Officials at the center selected the logo, but the entries were anonymous so it was a nice surprise, Yao said. She also won a year membership to the center.

"Amy works here in the summers and she has been working here for the past couple of summers as a counselor, so we feel like she is really one of our own," said Cutler. "Her logo really captured who we are and were we hope to go in the future."

There are three main focuses of the center, said Mark Weintraub, executive director of the center, which are childcare, offering a variety of programs and fitness with a focus on well-being.

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