Tu B'Av

Tu B’Av

Tu B’Av (August 5th), a Jewish holiday celebrating love and friendship, is an opportunity to reflect on the many ways in which love and kindness are reflected in the BBYO community. As part of our celebrations this year, we’re highlighting a few alumni couples and friendships formed through BBYO. Rejoice and reminisce with us as we stroll down memory lane together—and enjoy some fun, heartwarming stories and photos!

Plus, join us on Saturday, August 8th for BBYO Community of Love Havdallah, as we celebrate lifelong friendships and relationships formed in BBYO, enjoy a slideshow of all alumni then-and-now photos, and reflect on the core values of love and kindness that connect generations of AZA and BBG. Tune in here!  


David and Julie Abes (Mislow)

Years Together: 26
Region: Western

David was the godol of my brother’s chapter so he called my house a lot. Finally, my senior year, my BFF told me that he was nice and that I should talk to him more. At a BBYO dance weekend, we started talking, and we’ve been together ever since. We’re still friends with all of our BBYO friends, and have two children who were active in BBYO. Needless to say, BBYO changed our lives! ­-Julie


Adam and Pam Barasch (Berenstein)

Years Together: 33
Region: Central Region West

I was in Sophie Tucker BBG #150 and he was in Jack Benny AZA #1922. We spent our high school years being JUST FRIENDS (as we told everyone). We watched out for each other, up close and from a distance at dances, events, Kallahs, on the board, and through first loves and first break ups. Our friendship continued through college until my year in Israel, when I stayed in touch with everyone…but him! My first week back, we saw each other at a party, got into a heated debate about not staying in touch, and the rest is history! ­-Pam


Adam and Lindsay Berger (Gilman)

Years Together: 18
Region: Greater Jersey Hudson River Region

We had many mutual friends, and were at many conventions together. Adam was in Marlboro AZA, and I was in East Brunswick BBG. In 2002, we started “dating” – movies, conventions, weekend hangouts with other BBYO friends. We both went to IU. After college, we both came back to NYC, and we were married in 2009. Despite being 17 years removed from BBYO, the memories have not faded and our BBYO friendships have only gotten stronger. -Lindsay


Steve Fradkin and Tootie Brounes

Years Together: 45
Region: Texoma

Tootie and I both joined BBYO in Houston, TX in the fall of 1973. Although we were both lifelong Houston residents, living less than three miles apart, we didn’t know each other until then. Our paths had never crossed. Tootie joined and became active in BBG #63, and I did the same in Shapiro AZA. Our two chapters had a close connection, and shared numerous events together. We saw each other often, and were in the same Algebra class. Tootie sat up front, and I sat in the back. Our first date was in May 1975, junior year, and we went to dinner and a movie – not unlike what we often still do, but now we begin and end our evening much earlier. We got engaged in 1979 and have been married 40 years. -Steve


Robyn Lynn-Feinberg and Mark Feinberg

Years Together: 41
Region: Florida Region

I met Robyn on December 26, 1979 at Florida Regional Convention in Leesburg, FL. We were in different councils. Our first encounter was during an ice-breaker program that I was leading. I called Robyn out of the crowd as a volunteer. We were demonstrating communication skills without speaking or touching, and spent quite a few minutes gazing into each other’s eyes – and the rest is history! I went back home and wrote her long letters, and invited her to the Orlando Sweetheart Dance. We married 8 years later, and the story continues! -Mark


David and Wendy Marks Firestone

Years Together: 40
Region: Ohio Northern Region

David and I met at a chapter event, going to see the original Muppet Movie before going to a BBYO member’s house for an after-party. I was a member of Deborah BBG, and David was a member of Samson AZA, and we became close friends. We were married in 1988 with many BBYO friends in attendance. After we married, we served as BBYO advisors. Whenever David would comment on one of our children’s behavior and how he never did anything like that, I retort, “Yes, you did! I remember you back then!” -Wendy


Scott and Cindi Gelman (Rich)

Years Together: 50
Region: Rocky Mountain Region

I met Scott in Rocky Mountain Region BBYO. Some of our favorite memories are conventions, beau/sweetheart dances, and the friends that we still have that we met in BBYO! We live in Denver now, and have been married 42 years. -Cindi


Bob and Dee Dee Halpin (Morewitz)

Years Together: 49
Region: Texoma

The summer after 10th grade, I transferred to a different high school. I cried most of the summer because my then-boyfriend was still going to be in the old school. My parents arranged a carpool for me to get to my new school, and it included Bobby. I had met him before but didn’t know well. We had a lot of mutual friends from BBYO and so we became very good friends that year. I graduated high school in 1972, and went on to college while Bobby still had another year of high school. He proposed in 1974, and in 1975, we both graduated one week, moved back to Houston and got married the next week, and I went to work as a Special Education teacher the following week! We raised three active BBYO children and served as advisors, and Bobby was frequently the attending pediatrician at BBYO events – many of the kids call him “Dr. Bob”! I still play mah jongg weekly with my close friends who were also advisors and a Regional Director for BBYO. We will celebrate our 45th wedding anniversary this December. – Dee Dee


Bobby and Janice Jucker (Goldsmith)

Years Together: 23
Region: Texoma

I met Bobby 47 years ago at a BBYO convention in Houston, TX. For both of us, it was our first convention. After the convention, Bobby called me and wrote to me. The summer after my sophomore year, I ran into a friend of his and we met up again – we did not have a great time. We both went to school at U.T. Austin – but again, we just didn’t hit it off! Many years later, we reconnected and set a date. My childhood nerves came rushing back! We had dinner and our caricature done together. Later that week, I received a package of breads from his bakery, and the caricature. I told a friend, “What am I going to do with this, frame it and hang it?!” On September 7, 1997, we were married. I had the caricature framed, and gave it to Bobby at our rehearsal dinner. – Janice


Adin and Jennifer Miller (Tetenbaum)

Years Together: 23
Region: North Texas Oklahoma (Jennifer) & Northern Region West (Adin)

I first met Adin in Starlight, PA back at ILTC in 1987. We didn’t become good friends until we both went back as staff for Kallah and ILTC in 1990. I was from NTO, and Adin was from NRW. Our friendship blossomed when we each moved to Washington, D.C. after college – but it took a few years for things to click and for us to start dating! Fast forward, and we live in Mountain View, CA with our two children. We’ve been married 23 years. -Jennifer


Jonathan Sadow and Michelle Nooromid

Years Together: 15
Region: Southern Region

I met Michelle in her freshman year of high school. I was a sophomore. For both of us, we couldn’t wait to be involved in BBYO, as Michelle’s brother and older cousins had been in BBYO for years and my brother had just finished a year as Council Godol and was about to become Grand Aleph Godol. There was a lot of BBYO build-up for both of us and a common ground of older sibling shadows from the beginning! We started dating in our junior/senior years, but up until then, we were never out of each other’s sights between chapter events, council and regional events, and even international summer programs. We supported each other through elections, and spent summers together at Perlman. We married 15 years ago and now live in California. -Jon


Jacob Herstein and Alexis Prager

Years Together: 6
Region: North Texas

Lexi and I were Regional N’siah and Godol together! We started dating as seniors in high school with two months left in our term. The first time we said “I love you” was under the stars at Tulsa Kallah. We live in Texas, and have been together for six years. -Jacob


Lewis and Sandi Schwartz Schneider

Years Together: 55
Region: Washington, D.C.

On June 12, 1965, I went to a social at a friend’s house in Silver Spring for Wheaton/Friedman AZA and Beth Kadima BBG. There I met Sandy, and we talked for two hours straight. She went home and told her mother and cousin, “I’ve met the man I’m going to marry.” We’ve been married for 49 years. Thank goodness for BBYO. -Lewis


Max Frischman and Inbar Shuv-Ami

Years Together: 3
Region: Keystone Mountain Region (Max) and Maccabi T'zair Poleg (Inbar)

I first met Inbar at BBYO International Convention in 2016. We hit it off immediately. Fast forward one year, and we ended up both staffing ILSI in 2017. Then, in 2018, I made Aliyah and moved to Israel. We’re now engaged—and have a dog named Bamba! -Max


Jeffrey and Carly Sparks (Byers)

Years Together: 25
Region: St. Louis Midwest

I was the Sweetheart of Albert Einstein #1287 for two years, and Jeff was chapter President. We were never very close, but were in the same friend group and had lunch together almost every day. We even have many pictures together from dances, conventions, and more. After high school, we went our separate ways and attended different colleges, and didn’t stay in touch. I was married, had two children, and eventually divorced and moved back to St. Louis. We both happened to be invited to a brunch with some mutual friends. We had a common history of course, but we also shared a love of life, a commitment to the Jewish community, and we had more fun together than we’d ever had with anyone else. A year later, we were engaged. We live now just a couple of miles from where we met. -Carly


Marty and Marilyn Spiegel (Zuckerman)

Years Together: 58
Region: Southwestern

I met Marty at an AZA-BBG social in Pasadena, CA. We were both delegates to BBYO IC in 1962. I became Regional President in 1963, and Marty was Regional Godol in 1964. After our wedding, on June 25, 1967, Marilyn went on to be a chapter advisor and Marty served many years on the International Adult Advisory Board. We have been married for 53 years, and many of our closest friends today were friends we met in BBYO. -Marilyn