By Stephanie Goodling
This year Jewish Family Service of the Lehigh Valley’s annual fundraiser will be a virtual food festival to celebrate the work of their Community Food Pantry and those who support it. On Sunday, Nov. 8, The Great JFS FoodFestFaire will be an innovative all-day affair, with videos highlighting JFS, community cooks and sponsors streaming on their Facebook page throughout the morning and early afternoon.
“Agencies have become innovative and creative in the ways they are reaching out and connecting to their supporters in light of the pandemic,” said Marcia Berkow, fundraiser co-chair. “In lieu of our traditional brunch, we are excited to present this online event that will still bring people together around something that is important to the Jewish community—food.”
At 4:00 p.m., the big event will go live on Zoom. The ticketed Food Pantry Throwdown, hosted by Naomi Schachter, will consist of local chefs facing off to compete in three different categories. Amateur chefs from the Lehigh Valley Jewish community will prepare appetizers, professionals will tackle the main course, and kids will take on dessert. All three categories will be judged, with the winners being announced live. All of the dishes prepared will include kosher ingredients from the JFS Community Food Pantry.
In addition to the Nov. 8 festivities, registered attendees will also receive a copy of “The Great JFS FoodFestFaire Cookbook: Feeding Families, Changing Lives,” which is being published in conjunction with the event. All members of the community are invited to submit one or more vegetarian or dairy recipes to the cookbook to create a one-of-a-kind collection of family favorites to be passed down for generations. Recipes are being collected until Sept. 16, and can be submitted through jfslv.org/foodfestfaire, and additional copies of the cookbook may be ordered.
Sponsorship opportunities for the fundraiser are also available. Anyone can place an ad in the cookbook in honor of a loved one (perhaps in honor of Bubbe after sharing her rugelach recipe) or in honor of the work of JFS. There are many levels of sponsorship available, from a small personalized ad to logo recognition up to having your company or family recipe highlighted in a featured video during the online film festival portion of the event.
“The Lehigh Valley has missed out on so many beloved festivals this summer, but our virtual FoodFestFaire will be a fun-filled day for all while supporting the vital work of our food pantry,” said Susan Sosnow, fundraiser co-chair.
To submit your recipe, register for the event or purchase a sponsorship package, please visit jfslv.org/foodfestfaire or mail in to Jewish Family Service of the Lehigh Valley, 2004 W. Allen Street, Allentown, PA 18104.