The Pew Tzedakah Project turns salvaged pews from Beth El Synagogue into items for sale. All proceeds go to HIAS for refugee relief. To date, over $18,000. has been donated to HIAS through the Pew Project.
In January, 2018 a group of volunteers dismantled the old pews to prepare for major sanctuary remodeling.
The salvaged wooden components (mostly vintage 1950s mahogany) were transported to Steve Henry Herman’s woodworking shop in Hillsborough, where the materials are stored and used to create sanctuary furnishings, ritual items, and secular products for the home.
Initial pew wood projects were items commissioned for the renovated building:
A 480-plaque Memorial Wall located in the former Ark space. This was fashioned with 8ft long pew seatbacks arranged vertically to hold columns of plaques and computer-activated LED lights.
A Ritual Hand Washing Station in a wall niche between the Sanctuary and Social Hall. This was constructed using two pew row-end pieces positioned horizontally to create the countertop for a granite-mounted copper basin.
A “L’Chayim” cabinet/bar to store and serve whiskey used at Shabbat Kiddushim and other celebrations. The thick tabletop is a Mogen Dovid design of mahogany and maple from the pew row ends.
Mezuzot for all doorposts in the new building. These were crafted from “tiger-grained” maple with mahogany trim.
The second phase of the Pew Project—currently ongoing—involves creation of unique religious and secular items commissioned by Beth El members and others in the community. To PURCHASE or COMMISSION any of these PEW WOOD ITEMS, contact Steve Henry Herman at SteveHenry7@nc.rr.com
Butcher Block Coffee Table
Anyone wishing to discuss a possible project should contact Steve at SteveHenry7@nc.rr.com.
Gift items to purchase (for a donation to HIAS):
Tzedakah Boxes ($54 & $72)
Challah Boards ($54)
iPad/Smartphone Stands ($18 & $36)