Registration is now open for the Orthodox Union’s (OU) free Jewish Community Home Relocation Fair which will take place on Sunday, February 13.
Young families, retirees, empty-nesters, singles, newly-married couples, and all others considering relocation will have the opportunity to visit 52 booths representing more than 60 Orthodox Jewish communities from 22 states and Israel. From Albany, N.Y., to Wilkes Barre/Scranton, Penn.; Chesterfield, Mo. to Savannah, Ga.; Buffalo Grove, Ill. to West Orange, N.J., this year’s fair will be the largest yet and will feature 17 never-before showcased communities.
Additionally, one of the event’s major sponsors is Nefesh B’Nefesh, which will offer sessions on Intro to Aliyah and Choosing a Community.
“The event’s objectives are to enable growth of religious communities and to highlight affordable geographic alternatives that offer both the amenities of an Orthodox Jewish lifestyle and an enhanced quality of life, such as reduced living costs, more physical space or shorter work commutes,” says Rebbetzin Judi Steinig, the OU’s senior director of Community Projects & Partnerships.
Two months ago, 20-somethings Moshe and Alexi Eisenberg and their 19-month-old son Daniel moved from a three-story walk-up in Queens, N.Y., to a home in Springfield, N.J. — a community they discovered by attending the 2019 fair. The couple hadn’t seriously considered relocation until they decided, at the last minute, to attend the fair.
As Moshe works in Manhattan, the Eisenbergs knew they wanted to settle in the tri-state area. At the fair, they were impressed by the range of communities and the warmth of the representatives, which included rabbis, mortgage brokers and laypeople, among others.
“I really appreciated the chance to see the various facets of each community and to gain an understanding of the spiritual workings, costs and community members,” says Moshe.
“The event was super-organized,” says Alexi. The communities were very forthcoming with information, and they followed up with us afterward.”
For those wary of tedious Zoom sessions, Steinig assures it will be anything but boring, as attendees will be able to move through the fair as they would in a virtual reality experience.
Private appointments with community representatives may be made prior to, during and after the event. Highlights of the fair will include brief videos showcasing communities, e-brochures available for immediate download and discussion groups on topics of interest to participants.
Pre-recorded seminars will also be available on topics including “How to Make Ownership Happen” and “Living Smarter Jewish — Tools to Inspire a Healthy Financial Future.”
Currently, the OU is offering all registrants $5 off the fair’s 2022 Orthodox Jewish Community Guide, available both in print and PDF formats and sells for $15. The beautiful, 64-page color booklet profiles all 2022 communities and sponsors and is an invaluable resource for anyone considering relocation.
Given the importance of researching communities before making an actual move, the OU’s Community Relocation Fair is a one-stop shop for anyone considering a move.
“You need to know which communities are hashkafically appropriate for your family, depending on where you are on the Torah spectrum,” says Steinig. “You want to find a place where you will be comfortable. Besides the fun and excitement of the fair, the most important objective is that it is effective. People are interested in moving for many different reasons and communities are interested in growing, and we’re doing our best to help facilitate a shidduch.”
For more information about the communities and to register for the fair, please visit https://go.ou.org/vTioY
About the Orthodox Union’s Department of Community Projects & Partnerships
The Orthodox Union’s Department of Community Projects & Partnerships enhances Jewish communal life on a national scale by strengthening community leaders, organizations, and infrastructure and collaborating and connecting with Jewish lay leaders and industry experts.