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project exodus: KOL AMI HAS MOVed!

Kol Ami has moved to a new home, as the lease at 36 Atkinson expired on October 2, 2021.

We will continue to provide you with an update on the relocation here. Watch your email for our upcoming Town Hall in October.

In the meantime here are the top questions to help you learn more about our move.

Questions about our move

1. Why did Kol Ami move from 36 Atkinson?

Our landlord gave us an eviction notice as they wish to use our current space for their own operations. This was allowed under our lease. Kol Ami has now moved from 36 Atkinson. 

2. Where did Kol Ami move to?

As of October 1, 2021, Kol Ami has moved to the Kimel Family Education Centre at the Lebovic Centre in North Thornhill. We are now located at the intersection of Bathurst Street and Ilan Ramon Blvd just north of Rutherford Road.

3. Why did Kol Ami move to the Kimel Centre, rather than stay close to our current home at 36 Atkinson?

The Kol Ami leadership investigated many other locations nearby such as the Thornhill Mason’s Hall and the Promenade Mall. However, these and other possible locations were unable to fulfill our core needs for sufficient space for religious services, office space, our religious school, parking and building accessibility. As well, our new home is located near many Jewish families in north Thornhill.

4. Is there onsite parking?

There is plenty of onsite surface parking at the Kimel Centre. There is additional parking space available, both above and underground at the adjoining Schwartz-Reisman Centre. 

5. Will my contribution for dues increase?

No. As Kol Ami does not have a fixed annual dues model anymore, our membership is invited to contribute to the best of their ability under what we call your Community Commitment (formerly Voluntary Community Support).  

6. Will we have a bigger space in the new home?

Some of the spaces, such as the classrooms, may be bigger and other spaces, such as the Beit Midrash where most services will be held will be smaller. But we will have options to expand our space as required, for example for B’nai Mitzvahs or Rock Shabbat. We will be renting the adjoining Auslander Hall when required at the adjoining Schwartz Reisman Centre.

We have to live within our financial means and balance that with our space requirements. For example, since we couldn’t use our office at Atkinson since the pandemic began, we have chosen to continue without a physical office for the time being. This is also saving significant funds.

7. Is the Shul fully renovated and decorated?

Yes, thanks to the efforts of the Sacred Space Committee, our new Beit Midrash is ready to go!  We have new flooring and a fresh coat of paint! Later this fall, we will install more modern lighting. The sacred space committee is gradually decorating our new space, adding paintings and other enhancements. In the months ahead, we will also install our memorial plaques and a benefactor’s wall.

8. When will be our first service in the Kimel building?

On October 2, Kol Ami held the first B’nai Mitzvah in our Beit Midrash. Then on October 16, the Rabbi will preside over an in-person Shabbat service. All services will be hybrid with Zoom offered in addition to in-person.

9. What about Torah Studies, Talmud Studies and Friday Night Shabbat services?

The Oct 16 Torah Study will be hybrid (in person with Zoom option). We will make a decision after that on how to move forward. For now, Talmud study on Thursday mornings will continue on Zoom.

Friday night Shabbat will remain on Zoom. However, we will hold a hybrid live-Zoom version of Rock Shabbat this fall!

10. Can I come into the Shul anytime?

We will have opportunities for people to visit the Shul or attend services, but you must register in advance.

11. How many people will fit in the Beit Midrash? What happens if there are too many people attending?

Approximately 110 people can fit into the Beit Midrash. However, for now, we are restricting capacity to approximately 45-50 people or slightly below the legal limit of 50 percent.  

Kol Ami is requiring online registration so that ensures we are within legal and safety limits.

12. My child has an upcoming B'nai Mitzvah later this year or early 2022. How will the Shul’s move affect this?

Our first priority is to accommodate the B'nai Mitzvah families. We are working with those families to ensure all the arrangements are in place for their Simchas. 

13. Will my child’s Bar/Bat Mitzvah be in the Kimel Building?

Yes, depending on the size of your guest list. Kol Ami can reserve the Auslander Hall in the Schwartz Reisman Building for those families with larger groups attending. There may be some offsite options available too, such as the Bialik School Building across the street.

14. Is the Rabbi’s office open for meetings?

Kol Ami is not renting office space during the pandemic. For now, the Rabbi’s office will stay “virtual”, as has been the case for the last 18 months.  But you can always email the Rabbi if you wish to speak or meet with him.

15. Will the religious school be in the Kimel building too?

Yes. We are renting high-quality, modern classrooms at the Kimel Building, which is one of the reasons it was our preferred choice.

16. When will the students start school in the Kimel Building? How many classrooms are there?

Our grade 7 and Madrichim (vaccinated) will be starting some in-person classes on Oct 16. Grade K-6 we conducted a survey and parents would like to wait, but we will be reevaluating again in late October. We have 11 classrooms available. 

17. If I am vaccinated, can I come to the Shul?

If you are fully vaccinated you can attend once we slowly move to limited in-person services. Our first services indoors will be on Saturday, October 16.  We are allowed up to 50 percent capacity indoors. All services will be available on Zoom for those not wishing to attend in person.

The leadership will continue to monitor the Covid-19 situation to ensure safety for our community.

18. What is your vaccination policy? Will you be requesting vaccination certificates? What about my child? Do they need to be vaccinated? Do I have to wear a mask indoors?

Kol Ami pre-screens all attendees and requires full vaccination for all persons attending. The leadership will be discussing the issues of vaccination certificates.  Children 12 or over must be fully vaccinated. We will allow a limited number of children under 12 to attend.  Everyone attending must wear masks during services.

 

More questions? Email us at move@kolami.ca 

Pictures of our new Sanctuary

 

Sun, October 17 2021 11 Cheshvan 5782