October 3, 2023
October 3, 2023

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Back-Backstories on ‘The Bergen County Moment’

A few obiter dicta to Rabbi Polack’s fine article (“The Backstory of ‘The Bergen County Moment,’” September 19, 2017). Bnai Yeshurun started in Lilian Kopitnakoff’s basement prior to the purchase of a small home on West Englewood Avenue; Rabbi Label Dulitz preceded Rabbi Macy Gordon (now deceased); and in 1961, when I was their first youth director, a Friday-night minyan wasn’t always easy to come by. For the record it should be stated that the Teaneck mikvah came to be because of the efforts of Rabbi Judah Washer, z”l, whose connections in the community over many years smoothed the way for municipal approval.

Beth Aaron started as a shtiebel in a basement off State Street. When it was clear that this was not going to be a Chasidic minyan and many apartment dwellers moved to the Cedar Lane area, Dr. Litwin, an ophthalmologist, agreed to allow his office and waiting room to be used as a shul. Every Friday and Erev Yom Tov the office was converted. Eventually he sold the building to Beth Aaron.

Full disclosure: I married a girl from Teaneck before it became “Teaneck.”

Wallace Green

Fair Lawn

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