The Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh will be sending one its largest groups in several years to the JCC Maccabi Games, to be held in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., from Aug. 9 to Aug. 14.
Close to 1,200 visiting athletes, girls and boys ages 13 to 16 in 42 delegations from the United States, Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom and Israel will be attending this event, including 45 teens from the Jewish Community Center. The JCC’s athletes are participating in swimming, baseball, basketball, soccer and lacrosse.
The young athletes stay with local families. Games are held during the day, and events for all participants are held in the evenings.
Etai Groff, 16, is in the JCC’s group going to Fort Lauderdale, but immediately before that, he is joining his brother, Dylan Groff, 18, on the Maccabi USA team, playing in the European Maccabi Games in Berlin.
The JCC Maccabi Games are an Olympic-style sporting competition held each summer in North America. The first North American JCC Maccabi Games were held in 1982 with 300 athletes; the JCC of Greater Pittsburgh sent its first group in 1983. Regional Games were added in 1985 to augment the even-year Continental Games.
Today, more than 6,000 teens participate in the JCC Maccabi Games each summer. The Games are co-sponsored by the Jewish Community Center Assoc-
iation of North America, the Maccabi World Union, Maccabi Canada and Maccabi USA/Sports for Israel.