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You can embrace a brighter, pain-free future.

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Physical Therapy Highland Park, NJ  Sciatica Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Physical Therpy For Injuries and Pain in Highland Park, NJ

If there's one universal truth in life, it's that it can be unpredictable. Everyone experiences unexpected events that throw us off. While some surprises may only affect our bank accounts, such as home expenses, others can cause physical harm, such as car accidents that result in long-term pain and discomfort. Many Americans suffer from chronic neck and back pain - according to research, half of Americans over 18 develop musculoskeletal injuries that last longer than a year. These injuries often cause a range of mobility issues that make everyday tasks seem hard to do. Unfortunately, many people with chronic pain turn to addictive medications and invasive surgeries for relief, which tends to lead to further complications.

However, if you are experiencing chronic pain or mobility issues, there's good news: Safer and more effective options are available to you. Physical therapy in Highland Park, NJ is one of the best solutions for eradicating pain, maximizing mobility, improving range of motion, building muscle strength, and helping you regain control of your body. At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, our physical therapists and trainers offer customized programs designed for your body and address your pain symptoms. That way, you have the best possible chance of reclaiming a normal, active life, without surgery or harmful pills.

With the incorporation of therapeutic exercises and manual therapy as well as newer techniques and modalities like AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmills and DRX9000 Spinal DecompressionMachines, our physical therapy services can help address conditions such as:

  • Sciatica Pain
  • Ankle Pain
  • Back Pain
  • Elbow Pain
  • Headaches and Migraines
  • Hip Pain
  • Knee Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Wrist Pain
  • TMJ Pain
 Headaches And Migraines Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Service Areas

When it comes to physical therapy in New Jersey, few clinics can match the care, compassion, and effective treatment options that NJ Sports Spine & Wellness can provide.

Why is Physical Therapy in Highland Park, NJ So Important for Wellness?

Physical therapy can provide numerous benefits, such as pain reduction, enhanced joint and body movement, improved range of motion, proper alignment, and more. While the main goal of physical therapy is to restore function and facilitate a return to regular activities, these outcomes usually result from a broader rehabilitation process, wherein many patients learn a brand-new way of moving.

At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, our physical therapists work closely with patients to understand their unique goals, preferences, and abilities. Based on their findings, they create a customized treatment plan that caters to the patient's specific needs.

Here are just a few specific examples of why physical therapy is crucial when recovering from an injury:

  • Physical therapy helps restore function and mobility after illness, injury, or surgery.
  • Physical therapy promotes healing and pain management by utilizing therapeutic modalities and exercises.
  • Physical therapy helps patients suffering from neurological conditions improve their independence.
  • Physical therapy helps seniors avoid falls by improving balance.
  • Physical therapy can improve flexibility and strength to enhance sports and physical activity performance.
  • Physical therapy facilitates injury prevention through education and analysis of proper body mechanics.
 Shoulder Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Whether you're searching for long-term pain relief or need to improve your strength and balance as you age, physical therapy from NJSSW can help.

Now that you understand why physical therapy is crucial for recovery and wellness, let's take a closer look at some of the most effective treatments at our physical therapy clinic in New Jersey.

 Wrist Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

The DRX9000: Relief from Chronic Back and Neck Pain

Are you sick of living day-to-day with long-lasting neck or back pain? Have you searched high and low for a safe and effective alternative to surgery? The DRX9000 may be the answer you're looking for.

Beloved by high-level athletes and even celebrities, this advanced medical device employs non-surgical spinal decompression therapy to treat painful conditions such as:

  • Bulging Discs
  • Herniated Discs
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Facet Syndrome
  • Sciatica
  • Arm Pain from Nerves in Your Neck

The DRX9000 is a device that has been approved by the FDA for treating herniated discs through spinal decompression therapy. This therapy works by applying equal amounts of pressure on your vertebral columns, which stretches your spine and creates a gap between spinal discs. This gap allows for better nutrient flow through your spine, which can help heal injuries gradually with regular treatment sessions. The DRX9000 also utilizes servo motors that rely on nested closed-loop feedback to customize therapy to your unique needs. By using DRX9000, you can often speed up your recovery by addressing your spinal disc issues ASAP.

No Harmful Medications Needed (Do we really need this paragraph or could we just mention it int he beginning about how it is a non-pharmaceutical method)

Perhaps the most significant advantage of the DRX9000 is that it provides a non-pharmaceutical method for relieving pain. With the opioid epidemic affecting the entire nation, many patients are reluctant to take prescription painkillers. The DRX9000 offers a secure and non-addictive alternative for pain relief that does not require medication.

During the course of the treatment, the patient will lie down on a specially designed table that is connected to the machine. The table will then be gently stretched as the machine creates negative pressure within the affected disc. This process will be repeated over a series of sessions, typically ranging from 20 to 30 sessions, depending on the patient's specific condition.

The DRX9000 treatment is considered to be safe and effective for many patients. It is designed to be gentle on the body, and patients usually experience little to no discomfort during their sessions. The machine is also equipped with advanced safety features, including sensors that can detect any sudden movements and stop the machine if necessary.

Expedite Rehab and Training with the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill

The AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill boasts NASA Differential Air Pressure (DAP) technology, which is a highly accurate air calibration system that leverages your actual body weight to achieve exceptional results in rehab and training. By utilizing a pressurized air chamber, the AlterG allows you to move freely and without pain, as it uniformly reduces gravitational load and body weight by up to 80% in precise 1% increments. This process helps foster improved muscle strength, balance, function, range of motion, and overall fitness.

What Makes the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill So Effective for Physical Therapy in CItyname, State?

AlterG®'s state-of-the-art treadmill provides an entire range of benefits, such as mimicking natural movement and rhythm without the contrived feel of hydrotherapy or harnesses attempting to imitate real-life strides and motions. Additionally, it's beneficial for speeding up recuperation after orthopedic injuries or surgeries by enabling early mobilization and retaining strength. Furthermore, it's excellent for sports recovery since athletes can utilize it to maintain their physical fitness.

Some of the numerous benefits of using the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill include:

  • Accelerated Recovery Time
  • Relief from Impact-Related Pain and Discomfort
  • Customized Programs Suited to Your Needs
  • Effective Solution for All Ages
  • Safe and Controlled Environment
  • Improves Motivation and Confidence
  • Used by Elite Athletes and Celebrities

The AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill is a revolutionary piece of equipment that has transformed the field of physical therapy. With its list of unique features and superhero-worthy benefits, this anti-gravity treadmill is a game-changer that can help you achieve your fitness and recovery goals while also minimizing the risk of injury.

 Chronic  Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ
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Physical Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Experience Optimized Healing with LiteCureâ„¢ Low-Level Laser Therapy

After reading the headline above, you might be asking yourself, "Are lasers really used for physical therapy in cityname, state?" The answer to your question would be a resounding "Yes!" This advanced type of laser therapy harnesses the power of light through photobiomodulation (PBM), which is revolutionizing how patients heal and deal with pain.

Photobiomodulation (PBM) is a medical process that utilizes targeted light to activate the body's natural healing mechanisms. By penetrating deep into the tissue, photons interact with mitochondria (the cellular powerhouses in your body) to increase energy production. This interaction triggers a biological cascade that leads to increased cellular metabolism. As a result, PBM can reduce pain, accelerate tissue repair, and enhance overall well-being.

Low-level laser therapy (LLLT) is a non-invasive and painless treatment that utilizes specific wavelengths of light to stimulate healing and reduce pain. It works by penetrating the skin and tissues to promote cellular activity and increase blood flow, which in turn helps to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, and accelerate the healing process.

LLLT has been shown to be effective for a variety of conditions, including musculoskeletal injuries, arthritis, neuropathy, and more. It is a safe and gentle treatment option that can aid in regaining function and mobility from injuries, accidents, surgeries, and other conditions. That makes it a viable and trustworthy addition to your personalized physical therapy plan from NJ Sports Spine & Wellness.

LLLT has shown promising results for challenging conditions that other treatments can't match. Some of the most common conditions treated include:

  • Muscle Pain
  • Pain from Tendinopathy
  • Osteoarthritis Pain
  • Swollen Joints
  • Myofascial Pain
  • Back and Neck Pain
  • Pain from TMJ
  • Achilles Tendon Injury Pain
  • Plantar Fasciitis Pain
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If you're slogging through life and suffering from one or more of the conditions above, you should know that there is hope for pain relief. Contact NJ Sports Spine & Wellness today to find out if low-level laser therapy is right for you.

Freeze Away Pain and Swelling with Ice Compression Therapy

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

Understanding the Powerful Benefits of Ice Compression Therapy

 Sciatica Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

The "cold" component of ice compression therapy helps nullify nerve-ending sensitivity, which provides pain relief. The extra compression gives you even more pain relief by reducing swelling and pressure on limbs and other body parts.

By improving lymphatic flow and enhancing blood circulation, compression therapy can help reduce swelling and edema, thereby improving your recovery process and simultaneously reducing pain and discomfort.

The concurrent use of cryotherapy and compression can enhance the body's innate healing mechanisms by reducing inflammation, mitigating tissue damage, and stimulating tissue repair.

Game Ready's combination therapy has been shown to be effective in improving joint flexibility and range of motion by promoting tissue healing. This treatment can be a great option for those looking to alleviate discomfort and improve overall joint health.

 Headaches And Migraines Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Whether you're recovering from surgery or you're trying to manage chronic pain in your back or joints, ice compression therapy may be the advanced treatment you need. Contact NJSSW today to learn more about how this treatment can help you live an active life free of pain.

NormaTec Compression Therapy:

A Non-Invasive Option for Enhanced Recovery

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

What Makes NormaTec Compression Therapy Best for Physical Therapy in Cityname, State?

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

NormaTec's compression therapy devices have undergone continuous refinement and improvement since their inception. The adjustable settings of their system enable users to regulate the intensity, duration, and pattern of compression, thereby enabling our skilled providers to tailor treatment to suit the specific requirements and comfort levels of each patient.

 Shoulder Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

Experience Holistic Wellness with Cupping Therapy in New Jersey

In the realm of holistic wellness, cupping therapy is a venerable and time-honored practice that has proven to be an effective technique for managing pain and enhancing blood flow. At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, we recognize the diverse benefits of cupping therapy, which we offer at both our Matawan and Marlboro, NJ locations.

This ancient technique creates suction on your skin using specialized cups that help promote blood flow, muscle relaxation, and pain relief.

Why is Cupping Therapy Helpful for Physical Therapy in CItyname, State?

 Wrist Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, we believe that incorporating holistic treatments into physical therapy can greatly benefit our patients. As part of our efforts to alleviate stress and manage chronic pain or conditions, we offer cupping therapy as one of those holistic treatments. This modality has been proven effective and offers numerous benefits for physical therapy, which include:

Cupping therapy can help release muscle tension and relieve back pain. The suction from the cups releases fascial restrictions, decreases muscle tightness, and relieves muscle knots, providing relief from pain caused by muscular tightness or strain.

Our skilled practitioners and physical therapists use modern cupping devices and techniques to create consistent suction on the skin, which stimulates blood flow and encourages oxygen-rich blood to flow into muscles and tissues. This improved circulation can reduce inflammation, remove toxins, and promote healing.

Cupping therapy can relieve back pain by improving circulation, reducing muscle tension, and increasing lymphatic drainage. It's a natural and non-invasive approach that can improve mobility and quality of life.

Cupping therapy uses a gentle suction and pulling sensation that helps ease back pain and reduces stress by creating a calming effect on the body and mind, promoting physical and mental healing.

Reclaim Your Mobility with Physical Therapy in Highland Park, NJ

At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, we always prioritize your well-being and offer comprehensive care tailored to your needs. With customized physical therapy tailored to your specific needs, we provide a drug-free, non-invasive, and highly effective treatment path for pain relief and recovery. From tried-and-true techniques to cutting-edge treatments, we're New Jersey's top choice for innovative physical therapy.

Take the first step towards a pain-free, vibrant life by contacting our office today. It all starts by scheduling your initial consultation. With our highly-trained and licensed specialists by your side, you can embrace a brighter, pain-free future.

 Chronic  Pain Therapy Highland Park, NJ

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Latest News in Highland Park, NJ

Highland Park's Night Owl Markets Start This Saturday Night

HIGHLAND PARK, NJ — It's never too early to begin your seasonal holiday shopping or simply browse local craft vendors and artists to see what they're selling.Starting this Saturday night, Oct. 28 the borough of Highland Park will host a series of ...

HIGHLAND PARK, NJ — It's never too early to begin your seasonal holiday shopping or simply browse local craft vendors and artists to see what they're selling.

Starting this Saturday night, Oct. 28 the borough of Highland Park will host a series of "Night Owl" outdoor markets through Dec. 10. The markets will feature local artists, artisans and crafters.

In October, the markets will coincide with Halloween activities and live music this weekend, and leading into December there will be Christmas trees for sale and other holiday events.

#ShopSmall and do all your holiday shopping in downtown Highland Park. All the markets will be held in the public square by the pavilion next to 212 Raritan Ave.

2023 Night Owl Market dates & times:

Saturday Oct 28, 4-8 pm Sunday Nov 12, 12-4 pm Saturday Nov 25, 4-8 pm (with the downtown tree lighting at 7 p.m.!) Sunday Nov 26, 12-4 pm Saturday Dec 9, 4-8 pm Sunday Dec 10, 12-4 pm

Want to be a vendor? Apply to vend here: mainstreethp.org/vendors

And don't miss their downtown Halloween festivities on Friday Oct. 27, Saturday Oct. 28, and Tuesday, Oct. 31. Featuring pumpkin painting, downtown trick-or-treating, free tote bags stuffed with treats and local business coupons, a jack-o-lantern contest, live music and more!

Friday October 27: FRIDAY FARMERS MARKET

Saturday October 28: NIGHT OWL CRAFT MARKET

Tuesday October 31: HALLOWEEN

LAST CHANCE: Central NJ’s Park Place Permanently Closing Next Week

After 16 years, Park Place restaurant in Highland Park will be closing permanently on Sunday, June 4th, 2023. A new kosher meat restaurant will hopefully be taking over and will continue to serve the Highland Park, Edison, and New Brunswick communities.Until then, Park Place will be open for customers to enjoy all their favorites such as Hot Bites, The Park Burger, and BBQ Ribs.For those seeking to dine there before the restaurant’s closing, here’s ...

After 16 years, Park Place restaurant in Highland Park will be closing permanently on Sunday, June 4th, 2023. A new kosher meat restaurant will hopefully be taking over and will continue to serve the Highland Park, Edison, and New Brunswick communities.

Until then, Park Place will be open for customers to enjoy all their favorites such as Hot Bites, The Park Burger, and BBQ Ribs.

For those seeking to dine there before the restaurant’s closing, here’s their current menu.

Once they close, diners can find a kosher meat meal at Bridge Turkish & Mediterranean Grill in Highland Park, which became kosher in 2019.

Park Place will observe their regular hours of Sunday – Thursday: 11:30am – 9:00pm and is located at 120 Raritan Ave, Highland Park, NJ.

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Football: Highland Park snaps 51-game losing streak, closes season with a win

The scoreboard at Point Pleasant Beach said 46-29, but for the Highland Park football team, those numbers in lights represented so much more than just a much sought-after victory.The 46-29 win was not just the program’s first since 2016, but for these Owls, it was a forceful removal of the burden of a 51-game losing streak, the longest in the state, that had been affixed to their shoulders.Complete Box Score »“We n...

The scoreboard at Point Pleasant Beach said 46-29, but for the Highland Park football team, those numbers in lights represented so much more than just a much sought-after victory.

The 46-29 win was not just the program’s first since 2016, but for these Owls, it was a forceful removal of the burden of a 51-game losing streak, the longest in the state, that had been affixed to their shoulders.

Complete Box Score »

“We needed this win so badly. It was a well-deserved win. I think this win, to be honest, moved mountains,” Highland Park coach Shawn Harrison said. “Just to get that (losing streak) off your chest, I think was monumental.

“The losing of the games all year long, just this year alone, was weighing heavily on them. Let alone these last five, six years without a win.”

Highland Park led for most of Thursday’s game, but it knew it couldn’t let up or it would risk closing the year with another near-win that ended in a heartbreaking defeat.

Instead Highland Park answered back in the face of adversity when a 12-point halftime lead had shrunk to three.

On a 4th-and-6 junior quarterback Markos Hantsoulis spun out of trouble and found his cousin, Stamatis Hantsoulis wide open on the left sideline for a 29-yard touchdown that made it 38-29 with 7:14 left in the game.

About 90 seconds later, Stamatis’ twin brother, Konstantinos Hantsoulis jumped in front of a Point Pleasant Beach for an interception and sprinted down the right sideline for a 60-plus-yard touchdown that not only made it a three-possession game, but allowed the Owls to realize its dream of a win was on the verge of happening.

“You would have thought there were 100 kids on that sideline with the way they yelled out a roar,” said Harrison. “When (Konstantinos) was in the clear, the kids finally saw that we were at the doorstep of winning this ballgame. Their eyes just got so big and they knew that that win was right there.”

The three members of the Hantsoulis family had a hand in all seven of Highland Park’s touchdowns.

Markos opened the scoring with a 40-yard touchdown pass to Konstantinos just 96 seconds into the game. The lead was short-lived as Point Pleasant Beach’s Thomas Wagner took the ensuing kickoff back for a TD.

Markos Hantsoulis gave Highland Park the lead for good with a 4-yard TD run that made it 12-8, 32 seconds into the second quarter. A 37-yard TD pass to Jowan Keyes followed and, after Point Pleasant Beach made it 18-14 after a Liam Brosnan TD run, Markos Hantsoluis found Konstantinos for a 60-yards score with 1:06 left in the half that pushed the lead to 12 heading into halftime.

Markos Hantsoulis threw four touchdown passes and ran for two scores as well. According to Harrison, two of the TD passes came on broken plays, including the 29-yard TD pass to Stamatis that gave Highland Park the cushion it desperately needed to ensure this night would end with celebration rather than sorrow.

When the clock struck zeros and the final whistle was sounded, tears flowed from both Highland Park players and coaches alike as Harrison was embraced by senior Danny Sanchez and others afterwards. Harrison was given a Gatorade shower and the Owls celebrated on the bus ride back to Highland Park.

Since Harrison took over as head coach in 2019, Highland Park’s roster has nearly doubled as nearly 40 players are now in the program. This is also the second consecutive season that the Owls have had a JV team, a group that is well over .500 this fall.

All are signs of progress and promising signs for the future, but it pales in comparison to what Thursday night’s win meant to a program that had gone nearly seven full years without one.

“I know our record was 1-9 with this win it felt like we were undefeated this season,” Harrison said. “That’s how much the win tonight meant to us,” said Harrison. “We felt like an actual champion and that we actually accomplished something. That’s how much the win meant for this entire program.”

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Support for Israel Is Strong in Highland Park

With the military situation in Israel and global public opinion becoming more concerning, Eric Pelofsky, a resident of Highland Park, noticed an Israeli flag hanging outside Pino’s, a bar and liquor store in town. Noting that Pino’s often hosted special events supporting various groups, he had the idea to create a fundraiser and evening of support for Israel for the Highland Park and surrounding communities. Pelofsky worked with Pino’s management, initially intending to sponsor a keg of beer and some kosher pretzels and sna...

With the military situation in Israel and global public opinion becoming more concerning, Eric Pelofsky, a resident of Highland Park, noticed an Israeli flag hanging outside Pino’s, a bar and liquor store in town. Noting that Pino’s often hosted special events supporting various groups, he had the idea to create a fundraiser and evening of support for Israel for the Highland Park and surrounding communities. Pelofsky worked with Pino’s management, initially intending to sponsor a keg of beer and some kosher pretzels and snacks, and arranged that the Jewish Federation in the Heart of New Jersey would be the beneficiary of any funds raised from the admission fee.

Notices went out over social media and word spread like wildfire throughout the community. Giddy’s Pizza of East Brunswick donated 10 pizza pies that were delivered to the event and an anonymous donor paid for an additional five. The event was held on Thursday, October 26 and the venue was packed with a standing-room-only crowd shortly after the start time of 8 p.m.

Jason Postelnik, a member of the Highland Park Borough Council, remarked on the “amazing turnout” and said “this is the most crowded event I’ve seen at Pino’s.” He thanked Pino’s for supporting the Jewish community at this time.

The unusually mild weather allowed people to take advantage of the outdoor picnic table seating at the front and side of the store, where Highland Park residents Joel Zevin and Shlomo Peleg enjoyed their beer. “With all the negative anti-Israel news, it is good to see such a large turnout in support for Israel,” said Zevin.

“It is nice to see so many Jews of all types coming to support Israel,” added Peleg.

Laura Safran, director of community impact for Federation confirmed that 330 people were in attendance. “We raised over $3,700 from ticket sales and donations. In addition, many people visited Pino’s liquor store and made purchases throughout the day to express appreciation for their support.”

Pino’s co-owner, Siobhan Commerford, originally put the flag up in acknowledgement of one of the establishment’s bartenders who was called back to Israel for active duty. She was surprised at some of the backlash and hatred that came as a result. “People were coming in and yelling at us for supporting Israel. My Irish-Catholic background came out and I was determined to not back down. I wasn’t sure if having the Israeli flag was the smart thing to do, but I know it was the right thing to do.”

Commerford added, “Once word got out about our support in the Jewish community, people have been stopping by all day. Our inventory of kosher wines and spirits has been seriously depleted by the many unexpected additional customers who have stopped by.”

As Lori Resnick of Highland Park remarked: “The Jewish community knows how to support our local businesses that are supporting Israel.”

Support for the event was not limited to the Highland Park/Edison area. Safran confirmed that “someone from Israel called in a donation to the bar in thanks, and an anonymous donor even gave their credit card and asked that the bar tap it to pay for additional beer or wine if reserves were depleted, since the person couldn’t make it to the event.”

David Seiden (formerly from Highland Park) came to the event from Linden with his wife Rebecca. He said: “I came to support Israel and the community of Highland Park, which I know has some really grounded ties with Israel.”

East Brunswick residents Bill Kokkianis and Chris Fedosh, neither of whom is Jewish, came to show support for their Jewish friends. Kokkianis grew up in Highland Park and has maintained ties to the community. Both are appalled at what happened on October 7 and are distressed at the negative world reaction to Israel’s actions to keep their country safe, and they felt it important that the Jewish community know they are not alone.

Pelofsky was thrilled with the turnout. He planned the event and would have considered it a success if 150 people came. “The attendance is unbelievable.”

There were at least four rabbis in attendance and people from all denominations of Judaism. Safran noted, “The audience really skewed younger, which is fabulous. Spirits were high, and many people paid more than the actual requested $5 in support of Jewish Federation’s Israel Emergency Campaign. So far, our Federation has raised more than $400,000. Across the country, the Jewish Federation movement is raising $500 million.”

Safran continued, “I really feel the evening’s incredible success could be credited to the pervasive feeling of achdus, connection to one another, not only through our collective compassion and support for Israel, but also because—as different as we are—we are one Jewish people; one Jewish community. The half joke is that we should do it every Thursday night.”

All of the funds raised will go directly to Israel for food and financial assistance for impacted citizens: The Jewish Agency for Israel’s Funds for Victims of Terror, trauma relief and psychosocial care, Emergency Medical Services and more. Those interested in donating should visit www.Jewishheartj.org/email-donate to add their support.

Highland Park’s Empty Table Display Draws Hundreds

More than 500 people from Highland Park/Edison and the surrounding communities gathered at the corner of Raritan and South Second Avenues at 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 3 to view the Empty Shabbat Table representing the more than 240 people kidnapped from Israel on Oct. 7 who are not home to join their families on Shabbat. The display, organized by Central Jersey Stands With Israel and supported by the Borough of Highland Park, had tables set with tablecloths, place settings, cups and flowers — with highchairs, booster seats and a wheelchai...

More than 500 people from Highland Park/Edison and the surrounding communities gathered at the corner of Raritan and South Second Avenues at 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 3 to view the Empty Shabbat Table representing the more than 240 people kidnapped from Israel on Oct. 7 who are not home to join their families on Shabbat. The display, organized by Central Jersey Stands With Israel and supported by the Borough of Highland Park, had tables set with tablecloths, place settings, cups and flowers — with highchairs, booster seats and a wheelchair, to signify the broad spectrum of the missing.

The program was brief due to the onset of Shabbat. The event began with a welcome from event co-organizer Josh Fine and continued with a moving description about those who are missing from Andrew Getraer, former executive director of Rutgers Hillel, and the singing of “Shalom Aleichem: led by Avi Maza. A reading of the names of the kidnapped was done by a cross-section of community members, including ambassador and former mayor of Highland Park, Meryl Frank; Highland Park Mayor Elsie Foster; several community rabbis; and others. Following a recitation of Misheberach, the event ended with the singing of “Hatikvah.” People were encouraged to return and see the table during the remainder of the weekend.

Highland Park council member Matt Hale described the event as an “amazing display of community.”

Rabbi Ronald Schwarzberg, rabbi emeritus of Congregation Ahavas Achim in Highland Park, said he was “proud of the community for taking on the initiative to demonstrate support for Israel and visibly present some of the devastation that occurred on October 7 and why it is critical that Israel eradicate Hamas.”

The event organizers noted that anyone who was approached to set up the tables or donate money for the 24-hour security to protect against vandalism was eager to help. Posters of the missing had been torn down within hours at the same location earlier in the week.

Over the 48 hours the display stood, dozens of Jewish community members detoured from their usual routines to visit the site. An informal group met at the display on Shabbat afternoon to sing zemirot. Two families went to the display right after Shabbat to say Havdala at the location. On Sunday morning someone brought a guitar there to play and sing, and mothers brought their children to witness the display.

The organizers thank Foster, who was instrumental in obtaining the use of the vacant former gas station property from its owner, Edgewood Properties. Thanks also go to sponsors Miller’s Rentals and Glatt 27.

*Harry Glazer contributed to this report.

Deborah Melman is a staff writer at The Jewish Link.

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