FJMC Advantage - March 2014

Welcome to The FJMC Advantage, a monthly newsletter to help YOU build YOUR clubs and regions.
This month's theme is: Summer Programs - Including Convention 2015 and Regional Retreats
(Next month's theme will be: Keruv)

SUMMER PROGRAM IDEAS                                                                   

Summer is a great time for family friendly programs, especially for families with young kids, making it especially good for attracting younger members to your club.  This would be a great time to think about doing a Campout, Dad and Me event, or Baseball Game outing, especially to a minor league game where the tickets are less expensive and there are lots of activities for kids.  These events can be easy to plan and are a great time to put together a committee of younger men to organize the event. 


Plans are already underway for the 2015 FJMC International Convention in Miami Beach.  It will be at the Deauville Beach Resort Hotel in Miami Beach Florida from July 8, 2015 - July 12, 2015.


Your FJMC 2015 Convention leadership team is planning a great Fitness & Wellness program for the convention. Please plan to join them for morning bike rides, fitness walks on the boardwalk, swims, and beach yoga sessions.  There will also be region beach volleyball matches and other exciting activities. The 2015 FJMC convention in Miami Beach promises to be an inspiring and fun-filled event that you will not want to miss.  



LINKS OF THE MONTH - REGIONAL RETREATS                                    
This month, I wanted to make it easy for you to find information on different regional retreats from across the FJMC in case you are interested in attending one, or, are looking for information to improve yours.  Here are just a few that I am aware of:  New England Region, Midwest Region (2014), Midwest Region (2012)Seaboard Region, Anshei Darom, and Multi-Region (Hudson Valley, Middle Atlantic, Northern New Jersey, and New York Metro). 


SHOMREI HAARETZ AT YOUR REGIONAL RETREAT                                

Dr. Mike Miller, Shomrei Ha'aretz chair of the FJMC, wanted to share several ideas for "greening" your regional retreat.  Take a look at this idea sheet (ADD LINK).  Many of these can be implemented rather inexpensively and easily.    


ASK THE ADVANTAGE                                                                              
For those new to the FJMC Advantage, 'Ask the Advantage' is a place you can ask for advice on an issue you or your club are facing, whether it be programmatic in nature, club member interaction, transition related, or something as specific as dealing with a difficult member. 


Dear Creighton, I'm a club president but I don't do much in my region, which is based far, far away from my club.  I've never been to a regional retreat and I don't think I'm going to go this year either.  Should I go?  Signed, Staying Home. 


Dear Mr. Home,  I like questions I can answer with one word...YES!  Regional retreats are like a mini-FJMC convention, but typically held in non-convention years.  They can be a great time to meet guys from other clubs in your region, learn about new programs you can take back to your club and spend some time with your regional leaders that I hope have been to at least visit you and your club (if not, you should certainly ask them to).  On a personal level, they can also be a great time to "recharge your batteries" away from home in a fun environment that usually doesn't cost too much to attend (many regions and clubs subsidize them) and should be filled with all of the ruach and camaraderie you can handle.  Of course, there is often some delightful libations, if that is your thing.  And if it isn't, no one will care (all the more for us).  Creighton




Summer is great time to think about ways to improve your club and/or region.  Are you looking for someone to help with a specific issue, to develop a new program, or to just help troubleshoot your club?  The FJMC has trained several men just to assist you.  Here's a link to the FJMC website which lists some, but not all, of the available consultants.    The Northern New Jersey region also has some excellent information on consultants as well.  Contact your Region President, Stan Greenspan, or the FJMC for more information on getting a consultant to your club.   


TORCH AWARD WINNER'S SPOTLIGHT                                                  

Each month I'll spotlight a Program that was submitted for a Torch Award that you can adopt for your club.
In keeping with this month's theme of summer programming, I suggest you take a look at Beth El Synagogue in New Rochelle, New York's Family CampOut/CampIn.  This looks like a really fun program with tons of ideas you could use for your own CampOut (or CampIn if the weather won't cooperate) program for young families in your congregation. 

NOTE:  You will need to sign in to your account on the FJMC site to see these Torch Award submissions.  If you don't have an account, they are simple to create and the delightfully outstanding webmaster will make sure you have access to the right information.


...JUST ONE MORE THING                                                                         

A bit of humor you can use at your next Board Meeting, Presentation, or just to add some amusement to your day. Send me your submissions but please, keep them clean(ish).  


A Jewish husband and wife were having dinner at a very fine restaurant when this absolutely stunning young woman comes over to their table, gives the husband a big open mouthed kiss, and says "I'll see you later" and walks away.


The wife's jaw drops and she asks her husband who that was.  The husband pipes up, "she's my mistress."
"Well, that's the last straw," says the wife. "I've had enough, I want a divorce!"  


"I can understand that," replies her husband, "but remember, if we get a divorce it will mean no more shopping trips to Paris, no more wintering in Aruba, no more summers in Tuscany, no more Jaguar in the garage and no more country club.  But the decision is yours, of course!" 


Just then, a mutual friend enters the restaurant with a gorgeous babe on his arm.   "Who's that woman with Moishe?" asks the wife.  "That's his mistress," says her husband.

"Meh," says the wife, "Ours is prettier." 


Todah Rabbah to Al Finkelstein for this month's submission.