Given the COVID-19 health crisis, the Reflections is POSTPONED. We will be in touch when new dates are announced. 


Aronoff Preschool, PrimeTime and cultural arts, camp, fitness and wellness classes, and all other activities are postponed until further notice. 



Reflections, a month-long series of programs, traces the journey from the darkest days of Jewish history, the Holocaust, to the pinnacle of Jewish peoplehood, the State of Israel.  Reflections includes programs for all ages and offers multiple opportunities for the entire Orange County community to REFLECT on our heritage, ENGAGE in Jewish learning, EXPERIENCE Jewish culture, and FEEL connected to Israel.


Thank you to our Reflections sponsors: Dana & Yossie Hollander and Doris & Martin Melnick. The Reflections series is a project of Center for Jewish Life and operated in collaboration with Jewish Federation & Family Services of Orange County.



Yom Hashoah: Commemorating the Holocaust


"From the Children, About the Children, For the Children: Art and Writing of the Holocaust" exhibit

April 29 - May 27, 2019
Slutzky Art Gallery at the Merage JCC
FREE to the community


Tour the Nancy & Irv Chase Family Holocaust Memorial Garden

at the Merage JCC
FREE to the community

Educational tours of our Holocaust Memorial Garden available for local schools and other groups throughout the week. Contact Debbie Meline to book a tour for your family, group, or organization.



Yom Hashoah Memorial Ceremony

Wednesday, May 1, 7 p.m.
Myers Theatre at the Merage JCC
FREE to the community. Please register

Merage JCC hosts the community-wide commemoration of the six million Jews who perished during the Holocaust, followed by the screening of Not the Last Butterfly, a documentary of The Butterfly Project.


The Butterfly Project - A project of remembrance and hope

Community members will have the opportunity to paint ceramic butterflies that will become part of a worldwide memorial to the 1.5 million children who died during the Holocaust. Butterflies created here at the Merage JCC will be mounted in the Nancy & Irv Chase Holocaust Memorial Garden.

Painting Opportunities
Thursday, May 2, 1 p.m. - Please register.
Sunday, May 19, 10 a.m. - Discover Israel at the Merage JCC
or by appointment, contact Debbie Meline 


Yom Hazikaron: Remembering Israel's Fallen Soldiers


Erev Yom Hazikaron

Tuesday, May 7, 7 p.m.
Myers Theater at the Merage JCC
FREE to the community

Merage JCC welcomes the Israeli Scouts as Shevet Tapuz presents the annual memorial ceremony.

Humans of Tel Aviv Photo Exhibit

Tuesday, May 7 - Friday, May 24
FREE to the community

Enjoy a remarkable photography exhibit created by Erez Kaganovitz that conveys the diversity and vitality of the melting pot that is Tel Aviv. Through pictures and stories, the exhibit offers daily glimpses into the lives of strangers in Israel. Click the photo on the left to view samples of the exhibit.

Erez Kaganovitz will join us as a speaker at Discover Israel on Sunday, May 19.


Yom Ha'atzmaut: Israel Independence Day


Israel Independence Day Aronoff Preschool Parade

Thursday, May 9, 10:30 - 11 a.m.
Guests invited to view the parade
Live Israeli music on Main Street
Israeli food available for purchase at JCafe


Discover Israel 

Sunday, May 19, 10 a.m. - 12: 05 p.m.
Seminars are FREE
10 a.m. - 12:05 p.m.  Seminars with local rabbis and guest speakers on various Israel-related topics

  • The Butterfly Project (painting) with artist Cheryl Rattner

  • Erez Kaganovitz: Humans of Tel Aviv

  • The Israeli Kitchen: Cooking Demonstration

  • Unit 669: Using IDF skills to save everyday lives

  • It's a Democracy, Dammit! Julian Resnick offers his analysis of the recent Israeli national elections


Yossi Klein Halevi

Sunday, May 19, 4 - 5:30 p.m.
Myers Theatre at the Merage JCC

Renowned Israeli author Yossi Klein Halevi presents his newest book: Letters to my Palestinian Neighbors: Why I've tried to explain Zionism to them and what they have written back.

$18 members, $25 non-members, $75 for event and private reception with Yossi Klein Halevi ($125 per couple) following the presentation. 


OC Celebrates Israel

May 3, 2020

An outdoor celebration of Israel's 72nd birthday in partnership with Israeli American Council - IAC; live entertainment for kids and adults, Israeli food trucks, shuk (marketplace), games, and more!



Yom Hashoah is Israel’s Holocaust Memorial Day. In Israel, the day is observed with a two-minute siren both at sundown the day before and at 11 a.m. on this date. Everything in the country stops for these two minutes of silent devotion.

Yom Hazikaron is the national Memorial Day for the thousands who have lost their lives in defense of the State of Israel.  It is also observed in Israeli with a two-minute siren at sundown and the following day.  All places of public entertainment are closed, and memorial ceremonies are conducted at military cemeteries throughout the country.

Yom Ha’atzmaut is Israel’s Independence Day, which falls on the 5th day of the Hebrew month of Iyar, which corresponds to the date on the Hebrew calendar the day the State of Israel was formally declared, May 14, 1948.  In Israel, the day is celebrated with fireworks, public performances, dancing in the street, and picnics in every park.