Historic TBS: Our story through the years...
...from 1973 into the 21st Century
In July 1973, there were about 18 Jewish families scattered throughout the “C” section of Palm Coast. Dave and Anita Barber decided to welcome a new couple, Joe and Pauline Zlotshewer, who were moving to the area. During the welcome party, someone suggested, “Why don’t we start a synagogue? We have more than enough for a minyan!”
And so it began. The families decided to call their new synagogue Temple Beth Shalom. Our very first president was Bert Goldstein. Anita Barber became Treasurer and Faye Goldstein was Secretary. Dues were set at a mere $10.00 per family per year.
TBS held its first Shabbat service on July 20, 1973 in the auditorium of the Palm Coast Welcome Center. Temple Israel of Daytona Beach kindly donated prayer books. Bert Goldstein and Joe Zlotshewer led services, which were attended by about 35 adults and children.
As our congregation grew, TBS shifted the location of its services. In 1973, we soon had to move from the Welcome Center to "The Valencia," an empty model home owned by ITT Community Development Corporation (ICDC) in Palm Coast. By 1974, we had to find a larger space again, and moved to a spot within the original Palm Coast Yacht Club.
On February 14, 1975, we dedicated TBS’s first Torah, which was a gift from the Park Synagogue of Chicago in honor of Cantor and Mrs. Emanuel Kolkey.
By the end of 1977, it became clear that TBS needed its own home. A search for the right location began as we moved yet again to Palm Coast’s Emergency Services Building in April 1978. The Palm Coast Fire Department graciously allowed us the use of their facilities as long as our presence didn’t interfere with their operations.
TBS formed a Site Committee in 1978 to look for a place where we could build our own synagogue. The committee soon found a three-acre lot on Wellington Drive that was perfect. TBS signed a land purchase agreement on February 20, 1978.
We were on our way!
It all began at Anita and Dave Barber's house in 1973
TBS's first three presidents
Bert Goldstein headed up a Building Committee which began planning temple construction. Architect Leonard Feinberg of Orlando drew up the plans, which the TBS membership approved.
On March 12, 1979, TBS president Manny Zuckerman broke ground at 40 Wellington Drive to signify the start of the construction of Temple Beth Shalom. About 60 families were present to witness this milestone event. Footings for the building were poured in September 1979.
Bert Goldstein, founding President of Temple Beth Shalom, Phil Sessak, our second President and David Siegel, our third President, shared the podium the evening of March 14, 1980. (Our fourth president, Manny Zuckerman, was out of state that day.) Together they conducted the first TBS Shabbat service in our new synagogue on Wellington Drive. More than 110 people attended. Our temple was formally dedicated on Sunday, June 1, 1980.
Rabbi Genn, Ben Swartz, Manny Zuckerman
Eddie and Mason Brown in front of the sign announcing our future synagogue site
L to R: Joe Bolton, Tim Lagakis, Manny Zuckerman, David Siegel, Alan Smolen, Father Cody, Rabbi Genn
In 1983, TBS’s 10th anniversary, we inducted the Holocaust Torah. Originally from Czechoslovakia, this Torah was one of many rescued and given to synagogues around the world to protect and hold. TBS was truly lucky to be selected to receive it. Cantor Emanuel Kolkey and Holocaust Survivor Sam Rozenberg were given the honor of carrying the Holocaust Torah when it was presented to our congregation.
In 1987, TBS joined the Reconstructionist Movement. By 1990 TBS became affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, receiving our charter in 1991. Currently we are an unaffiliated synagogue.
In January 1995, a beautiful display case for our Holocaust Memorial Torah was dedicated by Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken in memory of his uncle, Dr. Leon Katz.
TBS paid off its mortgage by 1997. Our temple home was really ours!
L to R: Cantor Emanuel Kolkey, Julius Rosenstein, Sam Rozenberg at the 1983 induction of the Holocaust Torah
Holocaust Torah in its case, 2019
The TBS Choir at a 1997 rehearsal. L to R: Claire Soria, Gladys Weiss, Ruth Cohen, Marina Lapina, Fran Meyer, Faye Goldstein, directed by Marge Palmer
Rabbi Lev observes as Julius Rosenstein sounds the shofar to end Yom Kippur (1992).
Lil Swartz and Mildred Schwab, members of the Oneg Shabbat Committee, 1998