Rabbi Grunberg brings Hanukkah Funland to Buffalo Grove
Rabbi Eliezer Grunberg of Buffalo Grove stands by a giant dreidel decoration Dec. 13 at the Hanukkah Family Funland at the Buffalo Grove Town Center. | Ryan Pagelow~Sun-Times Media
Updated: January 21, 2013 2:05PM
BUFFALO GROVE — The second year of the Hanukkah Family Funland has begun at Buffalo Grove Town Center, organized again by the Suburban Alliance for Jewish Education.
One of its leaders, Rabbi Eliezer Grunberg, has been at the carnival every night, hoping to give the kids some fun, while also imparting a sense of brotherhood onto the next generation.
Recently, Grunberg shared more about the Family Funland and himself.
Q: How is Family Funland going so far this year?A:
Hanukkah Family Funland got off to a great start. Many hours of work went into its preparation, and it’s great to see all the children having so much fun and enjoying the Hanukkah holiday. A lot of time and effort goes into planning and setting up Funland and many volunteers are needed to run the many different activities.
Q: How did this event begin?A:
During this busy holiday season there is, unfortunately, not that much offered for a Jewish family. We wanted to develop an event that was open for the entire Jewish community, and that was fun and meaningful for Jewish children of all ages. We also wanted the event to be open at different times to offer flexibility for different schedules. With all this in mind, we started planning Hanukkah Family Funland and rented a store front in Buffalo Grove Town Center to hold the event.
Q: What do you envision for its future?A:
Our goal is to make all the local Jewish families aware of this great event and give them the opportunity to attend. We offer school and group discounts and hope that in the future many Hebrew school programs will look into the possibility of bringing their students.
Q: How did you get involved with the Suburban Alliance for Jewish Education, the event’s organizer?A:
Well, it goes like this. SAJE originated as Torah Academy of Buffalo Grove, a Jewish early childhood center and pre-school started by Rabbi Shimon Zehnwirth, in September 2009. Rabbi Zehnwirth was looking for a partner to expand the school and Jewish programming, so I moved from New York to join him in August, 2010. SAJE became the umbrella name for our organization.
Q: What made you decide to become a rabbi?A:
Hmm ... well, it wasn’t the money, that’s for sure.