Live Streaming of Dedication Today

Dear All,

The link below will connect you with live streaming of the Dedication of Congregation Beth Shalom of the Blue Hills in Milton, MA this afternoon (Sunday, May 1st). It is scheduled to begin at 3:00 pm Eastern Time. Please tune in if you are able to join us via the internet.

Thanks for being a part of our new beginning!

Here is the link to our sanctuary and Sunday’s dedication. Circulate wide, far and fast since time is short

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Our Beautiful Parochet

The beautiful parochet (curtain/screen) that covers our ark, where our torahs will be kept, was custom-made by an artist named Temma Gentles (see  Temma came to Milton twice.  First, to see the setting of our new spiritual home and to meet our congregation.  And a second time to be here for the installation and to share some background about this piece of art with our congregants.  The parochet is not only beautiful, but it is rich in meaning.  We will have more details for you about it as we move ahead.

Our new parochet will be a focal point for our new Sanctuary.  Its beauty will inspire us to feel connected with G-d and with the natural beauty outside our windows.  Come visit, so you can see for yourselves!

April 18 2016-1April 18 2016-2April 18 2016-4 April 18 2016-3



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Labor of Love in Progress

We’ve built it so you will come.  A new Milton Synagogue.  Space to learn, be with G-d, celebrate, pray, hang out and shmooze, practice tikun olam, enjoy nature, cook and nosh, and be a community.  Our committed volunteers are working so hard to make our new home ready for you all.  We can’t wait to welcome you through our doors on May 1st.  Come celebrate with us!


April 13 2016-1

Our building getting ready for opening

April 8 2016-1

A second floor room with a beautiful view.

April 8 2016-2

Upstairs gallery with two of our hard working volunteers.

April 8 2016-4

Our beautiful library takes shape.

April 8 2016-5

Our library – a work in progress!

April 13 2016-2

Our custom made Ner Tamid (Eternal Light)

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Getting close!

Dear friends,

I can’t begin to tell you how thrilling it is to see the temple putting on the finishing touches.  It’s been a long 5 weeks since I’ve been here, but I want to give my thanks to Kaplan Construction and the many temple members who have given of their time and resources to bring this project close to completion.  Todah Rabah and Yasher Koach!  We did it!  The coming month will involve moving and unpacking and then we’ll have a joyous dedication on May 1st.  We hope that you will all make the time to join us for this happy moment!

Thank you.

Ada Rosmarin

March 20 2016-1

Millie Pollock vists our new ark

March 20 2016-2

The memorial room seen from the sanctuary

March 20 2016-3

The tall two-story wall in the sanctuary

March 20 2016-4

Checking out our beautiful ark

March 20 2016-5

The view north

March 20 2016-6

Another view north

March 20 2016-7

The stairs from the second floor

March 20 2016-8

Our library sans books, but with lots of sunlight

March 20 2016-9

The upstairs big multi-purpose room

March 20 2016-10

Other end of the big multi-purpose room

March 20 2016-11

The stairways take shape!

March 20 2016-12

Our entry road signs

March 20 2016-13

Derech Shoolman (Shoolman Way)


Installing the carpet in the sanctuary

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Installing the ark


Our official certificate of occupancy!  Mazel tov!

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A Milton street with a Hebrew Name

Temple Hebrew Sign

Of course, our entry road will have a beautiful new street sign in English, so people can find our new home.  But a special addition just under that sign, is our street name in Hebrew.  Transliterated, reading right to left, it says Derech Shoolman, which means Shoolman Way.  Thank you to Perma-Line for helping make this happen.

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A dream becoming reality

There are days at our new site that just take your breath away.  Today was one of them.  Things have been moving quickly for months, but now, every day on the site finds something very new and different.

Our community has been waiting so long for this.  We’ve held together through thick and thin with a shared vision for our future.  We dreamed and now that dream is becoming reality.  Here are some glimpses into progress from this week.


Downstairs multi-purpose room


Upstairs multi-purpose room




The elevator gets built and installed on location


Our beautiful library collection will proudly be housed on these brand new shelves

February 2 2016-1-2

Seeing the Sanctuary lights on for the first time was a thrill – Thank you Guzovsky Electric!

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Lights, color, action!

The painters followed closely on the heels of the sheet rock guys.  A lot of spackle and sanding and then up goes the paint!  We’ve tried to keep the color scheme simple, peaceful and beautiful – lots of soft greys and some splashes of blue to keep it interesting!

Light fixtures just started to appear in the past couple of days.  And today, the kitchen cabinets were installed and installation of the elevator is beginning.  Lots of progress!

We are trying our best to pin down our moving dates and dates for the dedication of our building.  We’ll keep you posted as soon as we know more!

January 26 2016-8

Kitchen cabinet installation

January 26 2016-11

First floor gallery seating area by the fireplace

January 26 2016-19

Sanctuary prior to painting. The cantilevered wall with the slits is the Memorial Room upstairs

January 26 2016-39

View from inside the Memorial Room. The window slits connect you with the sanctuary

January 26 2016-24

Upstairs large multi-purpose room – a splash of blue livens it up!

January 26 2016-33

Second floor small multi-purpose room

January 26 2016-31

The work to assemble and install the elevator begins

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A long road working for our future

The Building Steering Committee has been meeting since October 2013 – after we got the hand off from the New Home Committee that worked from 2010-2013 to find us a new home.  The New Home Committee was formed after three years of strategic planning about our future and a one and a half year effort to rezone our former property on Blue Hill Avenue (2005-2010).  Parallel efforts were undertaken at Temple Beth El in Quincy. In 2013, Temple Beth El and Temple Shalom merged.

This has been a long road.  As our beloved former Rebbetzin Francine Weistrop says, “Nobody said being Jewish was going to be easy”.

Here is a shot of the Building Steering Committee at the end of this week’s regular meeting in January 2016.  Excited about wrapping this project up!  There are many who went before us and many others on our subcommittees (over 40 volunteers) who have worked tirelessly to make this effort possible.

January 5 2016-2-2

L to R: Back Row – Bill Hanna, David Ehrmann, Jim Bruneau, Rabbi Benjamin, Mark Fitzgerald; Front Row – Ada Rosmarin, Karen Friedman-Hanna, Deborah Felton, Lila Rosenbaum, Ronit Voigt, Paul Cooperstein

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Let there be walls!

When the sheetrock team arrives, things really start to change.  Walls are starting to look like walls, ceilings like ceilings.  The sheetrock work is an art and a feat of strength.  Lifting those 4′ x 12 ‘ pieces up over your head isn’t easy!  And how do they get it that smooth? But take a look for yourself to see what things look like today.

January 4 2016-2


January 4 2016-1


January 4 2016-3

Upstairs large multi-purpose room

January 4 2016-4

Library sans bookshelves. Note windows to the right that look out over the sanctuary.

January 4 2016-6

Our stairway still has a way to go, but it gets us there and back.

January 4 2016-7

Entry to the building. Not the most elegant, but it will get better.

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End of Year Report

2015 is coming to a close and our building project is not far behind.  Lots of activity continued on the site this week.  Drywall is going up and the rooms are taking shape, windows continue to be tweaked, paint colors are being selected.  Thank you to everyone that has worked so hard to get us to this moment!

Wishing you all a very happy and healthy New Year.  Next year in our new home!

December 30 2015-1

Library – the wall you are looking through will be covered floor to ceiling with book shelves

December 30 2015-2

Upstairs northwest multi-purpose room

December 30 2015-3

The top of the stairs will have a nice curve to them.

December 30 2015-4

Here come the windows

December 30 2015-5

Project Manager Wright Dickinson instructs workers and keeps us all on track

December 30 2015-7

Upstairs large multi-purpose room takes shape

December 30 2015-8

Upstairs large multi-purpose room

December 30 2015-9

Upstairs gallery is a hub of activity

December 30 2015-1-2

Temple President Karen Friedman Hanna demonstrates where the sun shines in the sanctuary at the end of December

December 30 2015-2-2

Our beloved Susan Hayward of Hayward Interiors advises us on carpet and color selections

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Buttoning up

Although the weather doesn’t feel like what you’d expect on Christmas Eve, it is!

The focus this week is on getting the building closed up to the weather.  Almost all the windows are in – there are many!  Our electricians are busily installing wiring and lighting equipment, the carpenters are building soffits and putting up siding,  After our satisfactory building inspection earlier this week, the insulation crew arrived to install additional insulation on top of the spray foam that’s already been applied.   Energy efficient!  Next week, we start closing up the walls!

December 24 2015-1

Installing insulation in our second floor large multi-purpose room.

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A very busy place

Things are hopping at our site this week.  Workers of all trades are busy framing, siding, installing electrical lines, boxes and lighting bases, plumbing, installing HVAC ductwork, installing window frames and glass, etc.  It’s quite a scene.  Here are some photos of what’s going on.

December 15 2015-11

Rabbi’s office is where Jerome, our Superintendent, works during construction. It’s also where our weekly Construction meetings take place.

December 15 2015-8

The winter light on another unseasonably warm day.

December 15 2015-8-2

Our future patio on the north side of the building

December 15 2015-7

From the outside looking in to the sanctuary

December 15 2015-7-2

Running wires for all the sanctuary lighting

December 15 2015-6

The view out to the meadow. The pile of rocks came from an old stone wall, and will gradually be deployed to enhance the remaining stone walls around the site.

December 15 2015-6-2

The area outside the sanctuary on the east side

December 15 2015-5

Installing the electrical guts of our building

December 15 2015-4

Space for our fireplace is being framed

December 15 2015-3

Lots going on!

December 15 2015-2

Rabbi Benjamin stopped by for a visit. He’s standing outside the entrance to our Memorial Room upstairs.

December 15 2015-2-2

Not the most elegant front door, but it does the trick for now!

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Celebration of Light

The Building Steering Committee celebrated its third Chanukah together this week.  This ought to be our last one together as a committee.  There have been many nights around Lila Rosenbaum’s dining room table together – planning, wrestling with challenges, celebrating milestones, and looking forward to finally being in our new home.  So, it was sweet to light the Chanukah candles together one more time.  Happy Chanukah Everyone!


Chanukah 2013 – A joint meeting of the New Home Committee and the newly formed Building Steering Committee – L to R, Karen Friedman Hanna, Lila Rosenbaum, Rabbi Benjamin, Larry Rose, Neil Heiger, Paul Cooperstein, Deborah Felton, Robert Rosofsky (photo by Ada Rosmarin)


Chanukah 2015 – Building Steering Committee meeting – L to R – Deborah Felton, Lila Rosenbaum, Karen Friedman Hanna, David Ehrmann, Ronit Voigt, Bill Hanna (missing Paul Cooperstein, Jim Bruneau, Mark Fitzgerald and Rabbi Benjamin – but most arrived in time to eat some latkes!) (Photo by Ada Rosmarin)

Out at the site, we are celebrating windows that will bring in the light and keep out the cold.  The unseasonably warm December weather has given us a break while we get these guys installed!


The sanctuary windows are on site!


The east wall of our sanctuary has a beautiful wall of windows that look out into the woods and the meadow beyond. Their frames are ready to be filled with the glass.

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Activity both inside and outside the building continued in the past couple of weeks.  And then we got to pause and celebrate at this year’s Thanks for Giving event sponsored by the Milton Interfaith Clergy Association, where the temple’s Building Steering Committee received an award.   We are thankful to all who are working so hard and giving so much to make this new spiritual home possible!  We are building a vibrant future for our Jewish community.  Wishing you and your loved ones a very Happy Thanksgiving.


Thanks for Giving Award Recipients – Beth Shalom of the Blue Hills Building Steering Committee members in photo are: Top row L to R: Jim Bruneau, David Ehrmann, Karen Friedman Hanna, Bill Hanna, Middle row: Third from L to R: Paul Cooperstein, Deborah Felton, Lila Rosmarin, Ada Rosmarin. Missing in photo: Ronit, Voigt, Mark Fitzgerald and Rabbi Benjamin

Here are some other photos of what’s been going on at the site this week:

November 23 2015-1-2

Siding is going up and windows are being installed.

November 23 2015-2-2

Insulation is being blown into second floor

November 23 2015-2

Plumbers have been busy

November 23 2015-4

Sanctuary sprinkler system is installed

November 23 2015-5

Robert Baylor, Landscape Chair, working with Steve Tierney, Landscape Architect from Stantec and Dan Mearn, from A. Thomas who is doing the landscape installation

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Update for the week

This week, we said goodbye to Metro Equipment, our site contractors.  They have been working on our site since the very beginning and have been a great team to work with.  The pavers came in and laid the final coat of paving for our entry road and parking lot.  And siding and windows are going in – working hard to get the building closed up for the winter!  We are finalizing design plans for our ark, parochet and eternal light.  All we can say right now is that they are going to be very beautiful.  Shabbat shalom.


Jerome Golafaie – Kaplan Superintendent, Joe Cottel – Metro Foreman, and other Metro worker.


The Metro team and Jerome. Thanks guys!


The pavers finishing up the opening to our site from Lodge Street.


Just a little bit more paving material to finish the job.


The siding is going up! And windows are going in! We’re racing to get the building closed up for the winter.


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Shabbat shalom

It was a busy week at our temple site.  We’re all glad to take a break.  Here are just a few more photos of our progress this week.  Enjoy and Shabbat Shalom.

November 6 2015-2

Some of the landscaping along Shoolman Way – our entry road

November 6 2015-3

Starting to install window frames in the high windows in the sanctuary

November 6 2015-4

The Lodge Street border and our first pass at the sidewalk

November 6 2015-6

Our future patio to the north of the building

November 6 2015-7

Tricky getting to those high windows!

November 6 2015-8

Equipment that will be leaving soon

November 6 2015-9

Our setting



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Landscape and Fall Colors

Our landscaping is going in this week and it is really changing the look of our site.  Together with our new cedar fence, it is really coming together.  And, in the setting of spectacular fall colors all around our site, it makes our setting more beautiful than ever.


Lining up the plants.


Landscape Chairman Robert Baylor supervising the installation.


It’s been busy every day on the site. Lots going on!


New skylight was just dropped in by a crane. Nice to have the blue sky to appreciate it.


Lining up and moving the plants.


Arranging the Lodge Street border


The view over to the Conservation land from upstairs.


The view out our entry road from the upstairs library.


The crew from A. Thomas has been doing a fabulous job.


Steve Tierney, our Landscape Architect from Stantec, reviewing the arrangement of the plant materials.

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November Site Visit for Temple Mishpocha

Lots of Temple mishpocha (family) came to our site last Sunday to see our building in real life – not just here in the blog photos.  Because of access to our site, it has been challenging for many of our congregants to come for a visit until now.  Building Steering Committee members led small groups for tours around the site.  As noted by our Temple President, Karen Friedman Hanna, ” There was enormous pride about our new building expressed by all who attended.”  Photo Credits: Emily Goldman

Temple Site Tour

In the sanctuary

Temple Site Tour

Looking back at the Memorial Room, which can be seen upstairs at the rear of the sanctuary. Check out the foliage outside our sanctuary windows.

Temple Site Tour

Checking out the upstairs multi-purpose room

Temple Site Tour

Looking down into the sanctuary from the second floor window that provides a connection and a view

Temple Site Tour

In the kitchen

Temple Site Tour

In the first floor gallery


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Autumn and Progress are in the Air

A lot has been accomplished on our new home in the past several weeks.  The leaves are changing color and we’re getting a sense of the feel of our site across the seasons.  The site is bustling with workers of all different trades.  Check out these photos to see some of the progress!

October 23 2015-1

How many builders does it take to put in a window? We’ve got lots of windows. The team confers so we get it right.

October 23 2015-2

Our front entrance takes shape, with a new canopy to provide some shelter.

October 23 2015-3

The front of our building.

October 23 2015-4

Our new fence along the Lodge Street border

October 23 2015-5

Shoolman Way – our new entry road, off of Lodge Street, with our new fence on both sides.

October 23 2015-6

Inside the front entry of the building.

October 23 2015-7

The view to the Sanctuary from the 2nd floor gallery. The ark will go in front of the wood panel to the left.

October 23 2015-9

Roof hatch installed today.

October 23 2015-10

Bracket to hang the movable wall that will divide our sanctuary. This will help provide us with flexibility for how to use our space.

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The beat goes on


The weather continues to cooperate, allowing construction to keep moving ahead.  This week, National Grid arrived (finally!), our neighbor’s hedge got a major trim to accommodate the new fence, and the upstairs is taking shape.


National Grid installing our gas line.


The Santosuosso’s hedge and the newly installed fence posts.


A look upstairs to the sky above.


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Days of Awe

Shalom Bayit.  Peace in the House.   Next year in our new home in our new neighborhood.  L’Shana Tova.  Happy New Year.

September 18 2015-2 September 18 2015-3

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Let it roll!

It will be a lot easier to get around our site tomorrow – on our new binder coat of paving. Time to check off another landmark toward completion.  It will feel both strange and wonderful to drive our cars onto the site in the coming days.

September 17 2015-6


September 17 2015-1

Our entry road as it comes around the bend

September 17 2015-2

Shoolman Way takes shape

September 17 2015-3 September 17 2015-5

September 17 2015-7

Further striped developments in the sanctuary

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L’Shana Tova!

Wishing you and yours a happy and healthy new year!  Next year in our new home!

Our new sanctuary takes shape!  Next year we'll celebrate the new year in our new home!

Our new sanctuary takes shape! Next year we’ll celebrate the new year together in our new home!

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Second floor going up

We’re starting to see the shape of the second floor roof line and it’s looking great!

September 10 2015-1

A temple site tour to see the building in progress

September 10 2015-2

The front of the building during lunch break. The center vertical piece will be clerestory windows that open into our large multi-purpose room on the second floor. Lots of light and space.

September 10 2015-3

The Dynamic Duo who make it all happen – L to R, Jerome Golafaie, Superintendent, Kaplan Construction and Joe Cotell, Foreman, Metro Equipment. Thanks guys! You’re awesome!

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Labor Day Progress and Reflection

Filling in the framing for the first floor and on up to the second floor!

The building and all its components – both big and minute – that we’ve discussed, debated and agonized over for the past 21 months is coming to fruition.  There have been many compromises along the way.  Nobody has gotten everything they wanted.  As Rabbi Benjamin said, “dissatisfaction guaranteed”. But the vision and priorities of our congregation and the needs of our neighbors and the broader community have guided our decision-making and helped us know what was the right thing to do when faced with the multitude of challenges along the way.  Those of us who’ve had the opportunity to be involved in this process will recall all those conversations and think of the individuals who advocated for them – with a smile.

September 3 2015-9

Framing the south wall of the sanctuary.

September 3 2015-7

The east wall of our sanctuary faces Jerusalem and the green woods and meadow beyond. The wood shown on the right is the back of our new ark. Taken from below, this gives you a sense of the uplifting feeling that our ark will provide us.

September 3 2015-6

This carpenter is standing in our future library. The library will have windows that look out to the sanctuary below. A small speaker connected with our sound system will provide audio access to what is going on below. So, a nursing mother or a parent with a child who just needs a break can still feel connected with what’s going on in the sanctuary.

September 3 2015-5

The view from our 1st floor gallery out toward the front door.

September 3 2015-4

The stairs going up, for now. There will be a skylight above the stairs. So, when you enter the building, you will immediately see and feel the light from above.

September 3 2015-3

Our memorial room takes shape. Half of the room is cantilevered out over the back of the sanctuary. The walls of the memorial room will have small slits of glass to connect with what’s going on below.

September 3 2015-2

The back of the sanctuary looking out toward the front door. This view won’t last once the walls are filled in.

September 3 2015-1

Our construction and design team working it all out on our behalf. L to R, Wright Dickinson, Project Manager, Kaplan Construction, Mark Fitzgerald, BSC member and Haven Construction, Framer from Haven Construction, Jerome Golafaie, Site Superintendent, Kaplan Construction, Derek Little, Abacus Architects, David Pollak, Abacus Architects.


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Taking Shape

As the framers continue their work on the building and the site work team continues their work on the site, we can really start to see what this is going to look like.  And it’s looking real good!

August 30 2015-1

The front of the building. Don’t worry, there will be doors and windows before they’re done.

August 30 2015-2

The parking lot takes shape and workers are even beginning to park there. Remember those underground drainage tanks? They’re way underneath.

August 30 2015-3

This is the way the road will come in from our entrance.

August 30 2015-4

The carpenters are bringing our drawings into three dimensions.

August 30 2015-5

The latest view from the Gordon side of the property. This will be closed up and landscaped before too long.

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And away we go!

Framing a new building is always fascinating.  The carpenters are here and our building quickly takes shape!

August 18 2015-3

West wing on the left (admin, classrooms, kitchen, library) elevator shaft in the center rear and east wing (sanctuary) in steel to the right.

August 18 2015-2

View from the north side

August 18 2015-5

Facing the west, toward our Conservation Land.

August 18 2015-7

View of kitchen from the north. We’ll have a nice view out toward our Conservation Land while we have a nosh in the new kitchen.

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A firm foundation for our future

It has been a big day at our site – another milestone.  The concrete slab has been poured, providing us with a firm foundation upon which to build the future of our Jewish community.  Eleven cement trucks paraded up to the site, fed their contents into the remote controlled crane which poured steadily onto the base of our new building.  Compared to the challenge of bringing up our underground storage tanks weeks ago, this was, as Jerome Golafaie, our site Superintendent described, “a piece of cake”.  The team work by all involved was quite impressive.  They made a difficult job look easy.

August 13 2015-1

Moving quickly and together smoothing out the concrete

August 13 2015-2

Jerome guiding the concrete trucks in and out

August 13 2015-3

A smooth west side of the building

August 13 2015-11

Long handled rakes and strong backs

August 13 2015-13

Handling the crane and controlling the pouring with a remote control device that looks like it’s been plucked from some kid’s video game.

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Getting and staying connected

Our electrical lines and telephone/data lines will all be pulled through these cool underground conduits to our new building.  Our new building will have high speed wireless internet.  When connected with our new AV system, we will be able to Live Stream programming over the internet.  If you’re stuck at home with the flu or are out of town, but don’t want to miss a special event, you can stay connected with Beth Shalom of the Blue Hills.


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Going Up!

The steel started going up today.  It’s thrilling to see the framework of our new building emerge from the foundation.  A kvellathon of major proportions!  We’ve been looking at two dimensional drawings of this place for a long time.  Things are really looking up! Hope you enjoy these photos that show the shape of our new sanctuary!

July 23 2015-5

The sanctuary faces east toward the truck. Beautiful peaceful setting.

July 23 2015-2

July 23 2015-7

They strapped the two vertical beams together to make room for the new horizontal piece to fit in.

July 23 2015-3

The elevator shaft looking very 2001.

July 23 2015-6 July 23 2015-4


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