Summertime, and the Grilling is Easy

The heat wave broke just in time. Peach and yellow tablecloths set off by blue umbrellas dotted the patio at Maggie and Cliff Newman’s home in Livingston awaiting the arrival of 35 couples for the Friendship Circle Parents’ Barbecue on July 26.

It was an evening of wining, dining, pampering, even some laughs, as parents played some Friendship Circle/LifeTown trivia. What year was the original building that now houses LifeTown built? (Answer: 1957.) What’s the most popular food in Friendship Circle cooking programs? (Answer: cookies and pizza.) There were raffles for jewelry and other items, as conversations around the tables buzzed. Couple who have been part of Friendship Circle since its inception were joined by some of its newest families.

“We want parents to feel inspired, encouraged, and supported,” said Rabbi Zalman Grossbaum, about the evening. After enjoying drinks and a medley of summer barbecue favorites from burgers and salads to grilled chicken, Grossbaum opened the floor to hear from the parents, and give them a chance to brainstorm and offer suggestions.

“We benefit from hearing their voices,” said Grossbaum. “Sometimes, our best program ideas come right from the parents.” But most important, he added, “We want the parents to have a fun, relaxing night out in a special place.”

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