The 21st Maccabiah Games are currently being held in Netanya, Israel. Jeff Rubin, a local business owner, JCC member and husband of our very own Chief Advancement Officer, Esther Greenberg, is proudly representing the US team and competing in the 65+ tennis competition. He is one of approximately 12,000 Jewish athletes competing in the games, that are often referred to as the ‘Jewish Olympics’. The first Maccabiah games were held in Tel Aviv in 1932.
The opening ceremonies were a spectacle held in a soccer stadium that housed 35,000 fans and even the President of the United States, Joe Biden, who happened to be the first US President to ever do so. As the 1,350 athlete US delegation made their way into the stadium they began to sing Dayenu.
Jeff’s first match was against Haim Ohn, the #1 ranked 65+ player in Israel. Unfortunately Jeff lost the match, but there were no hard feelings as Haim was an excellent player and great guy. As they shook hands after the match, Jeff said to him “If I have to lose to anyone I’m glad it’s to an Israeli”.
For Jeff, the Maccabiah experience is “Jews first and athletes second”. He feels so fortunate for this amazing experience, made even more meaningful that he was able to share it with his lovely wife.
We wish all the players continued good luck in the games and are especially proud of all our local participants!