On Monday, November 15, we celebrated our 50th day of school in our 50th anniversary year here at Community Day School. It was a day of fun and meaningful activities, culminating in a full-school birthday party on the field.
The events kicked off with a guided history and community service walk for our middle schoolers through Squirrel Hill from the original site of CDS at the corner of Forbes Avenue and Denniston Street (the current Yeshiva Girls building at 6401 Forbes Avenue) back to our present-day campus. Along the way, students in Grades 6-8 made stops to learn about different moments in CDS history through the decades from alumni parents, grandparents, and former teachers.
Nancy Zionts discussed the founding of CDS in the early 1970s and the meaning of the school to her family, while Tzippy Mazer got everyone dancing to the top finale hits from a favorite Community Day School tradition—Zimriah! Ronna Askin and Lisa Steindel shared CDS memories, and Lisa and Brian Lurie played a trivia game with the students about the Gary and Nancy Tuckfelt Keeping Tabs: A Holocaust Sculpture and the Mensch Project. Along the way, the students also delivered handmade bookmarks to the seniors at the Jewish Association on Aging and at the JCC Pittsburgh to help warm up their reading in the cold months ahead.
Sharyn Rubin of the JAA shared the following afterward:
We had so much fun this morning! The kids were amazing.. so well behaved and a true credit to the school! I wanted to hug them all… including the teachers! Please accept my gratitude (and that of all the residents who will love the bookmarks!). CDS has a great deal to boast about… here’s to another 50 years plus!
In the afternoon, the entire school gathered on the athletic field for a 50th birthday party celebration that kicked off with an address from Head of School Avi Baran Munro. They also heard from invited guests County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, City Councilperson Erika Strassburger, City Councilman Corey O’Connor, Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh President & CEO Jeff Finkelstein, and CDS Board President Derek Smith.
Everyone showed their school spirit by wearing their blue and gold colors and waving their CDS rally towels proudly. After performing the new CDS School Song, the students were surprised and delighted by a flash mob, as all of their teachers broke out into a choreographed dance led by Lev the Lion! Murray the Squirrel from the Squirrel Hill Urban Coalition also showed off his dance moves. And of course, no birthday celebration would be complete without cake.
Happy 50th birthday, Community Day School!