Our Communities: The rapidly growing kehilla of Inverrary, Florida has become famous for a warmth and wholesomeness that mirrors its sunny weather.
By Anash.org writer
It’s a few days before Pesach and Rabbi Dov and Chani Goldman are boarding a flight from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale, where they will spend yom tov with their extended family. Their children are giddy with excitement, knowing that in a few hours, they’ll be with beloved grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.
For Dov and Chani, however, this trip holds greater significance: by the time they board their return flight, they’ll have closed on a home in one of Florida’s fastest growing anash communities.
“Inverrary appealed to us because it’s an established kehilla with a rav,” said Rabbi Goldman, who is a practicing psychotherapist. “Coming from Los Angeles, where we are very close to Rabbi Raichik, this is important to me. We also heard that it’s a warm and welcoming community, and the housing is relatively affordable; we found ourselves drawn to this place and everything it offers.”
The rav he refers to, of course, is Rabbi Aron Lieberman, Inverrary’s rav anash and a well known posek in South Florida. Rabbi Lieberman and his wife were sent as head shluchim to Ft. Lauderdale in 1981, over 3 decades before anash began moving to the area. When they arrived, they established a community made up mostly of holocaust survivors.
“My parents were visionaries,” said Mrs. Estie Chanowitz, who runs the preschool her mother, Rebbetzin Shandy Lieberman a”h, opened in 2004. “In 1991, my parents bought a few acres of land and built a beautiful building for the shul; a few years later, my father began pushing the community to build a mikvah.
“People did not understand why, as the community at the time was not at all developed. But he persisted, and over the years, the community’s dynamics shifted to younger families, and its growth exploded.”
Seven years ago, the community was devastated by the passing of their beloved shlucha; only a tiny handful of Lubavitch families lived in Inverrary at the time. Today, the community is made up of around 120 families, 90 of which are anash.
The shluchim have shifted gears, throwing themselves into the task of providing the infrastructure a lubavitch kehilla needs in order to thrive. The shul offers regular minyanim, a full-service preschool, elaborate Shabbos programs for kids, and daily shiurim.
“Our activities are catered to the anash community,” Mrs. Chanowitz said. “There are weekly classes for men and women, rallies and farbrengens for chassidishe yomim tovim, and a maamar is given over every Shabbos afternoon after mincha.
“This community is known as a chassidishe one. Many people who live here are involved in chinuch – they teach in the Lubavitch schools, work in the nearby yeshiva. This lends itself to a wholesome, chassidishe environment, and affects what families emphasize – we get excited about children’s outstanding accomplishments in learning. Davening on Shabbos is beautiful – we sing every tefillah, no one is in a rush.”
This focus on learning is not just for children. There are various shiurim for adults throughout the week, and Rabbi Lieberman makes time in his day to learn with people. As a rav, he takes care not only of the spiritual needs of his kehilla – he is known for his genuine concern and generosity, and for his efforts in raising money to help others.
The established infrastructure includes many social and learning opportunities for women, as well as an active support network. There are regular shiurim and N’shei Chabad programs, and a well-developed Shifra and Puah. On top of organized efforts, the community is made up of friendly, supportive and socially-oriented families.
“The block I live on feels like a bungalow colony,” Mrs. Chaya Katz told Anash.org. “There are always kids playing together outside, and people are constantly inviting each other over for Shabbos meals. When we moved into the community, neighbors showed up with welcome gifts and Shabbos invitations. This is an easy place to find and make new friends!”
Community size: 90 Families
Mosdos and Amenities:
- Main Chabad Shul: Synagogue of Inverrary Chabad
- Chabad Schools:
- Preschool – Chabad Preschool in Inverrary
- Elementary – Lubavitch Educational Center (35 minute drive, busing available); Lubavitch Hebrew Academy (25 minute drive)
- Higher Education – Chabad yeshivos and high schools in Miami and Coral Springs
- Mikvaos: Chabad mikvaos in the area
- Kosher Establishments: Kosher grocery and two eateries 5 minutes from the community carry all the basics; many full service kosher stores and restaurants in nearby Hollywood
- Moreh Hora’ah: Rabbi Aron Lieberman
Cost of Living:
- Housing market (ZIP code 33319):
- Condos go for between $100k – $150k. Townhouses range from $200k – $250k.
- A 3 bedroom single-family home will cost you somewhere in the neighborhood of $400k. Anything larger than that will be higher.
- Rental homes begin at $2400 per month, and can exceed $3000 for a 4 bedroom home. Apartments and townhouses range from $1200 – $1800 per month, depending on size and number of bedrooms.
- Houses in Inverrary are hard to come by! Realtor Tamir Gotkin often sells houses before they hit the market.
- Inverrary is close to several Chabad schools and yeshivos, creating many opportunities for those who want to be involved in chinuch
- Easy access to a wide and varied professional market – realtors, mortgage brokers, lawyers, medical offices – among others
- Many in the community operate online businesses or work as private contractors
- Cheder tuition:
- Tuitions at Lubavitch Educational Center of North Miami Beach and Lubavitch Hebrew Academy of Coral Springs range from $10,000 – $15,000; there are significant government grants available for private school tuition in Florida.
Nearby Anash communities: North Miami Beach – 35 minute drive; Coral Springs – 25 minute drive
Want to further explore this community? Reach out to Mrs. Estie Chanowitz at (954) 687-2523.
For help navigating the housing market, contact Tamir Gotkin at 954-701-7866 or [email protected]
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