More than 2,000 people were at this year’s annual Friendship Circle Walk and Run at LifeTown in Livingston on October 22; 170 of them were runners. It was the second annual 5K run, and a 20 percent increase in attendance over last year. The run and walk were followed by a day of family fun and entertainment, including a petting zoo, face painting, bouncy houses, rides, a climbing wall, and the opportunity to write a letter to an Israeli soldier and for men to lay tefillin to connect spiritually with people in Israel.
FCwalk & Run is the Friendship Circle’s biggest event of the year. Funds raised support daily programs at LifeTown for children and adults with special needs, offering everything from sports and art to cooking and swimming in a unique setting that caters to their abilities and sensitivities.
While there were opportunities for community solidarity with Israel, the mood remained light and focused on the children and Friendship Circle’s mission.
“We are so grateful to be able to bring the whole community together, to celebrate our volunteers and our amazing participants, and to do mitzvot, and share prayer and song for the people of Israel,” Rabbi Zalman Grossbaum, Friendship Circle’s CEO and executive director, said. “So many of those in attendance expressed that the energy was so special, and it was exactly what they need during these dark days.”