Dr. Roberts: Over 10,000 Attended the Chol Ha’moed Event; Improvements Coming for Next Event

roberts 1PHOTOS: Dr. Rich Roberts tells TLS that based on the nosh and prize distribution, he estimates between 10-15,000 people attended this year’s Chol Ha’moed event at Pine Park.

Dr. Roberts also acknowledged the feedback and constructive criticism by some of the attendees, and told TLS he is looking to correct the issues to ensure the amazing event is made even more amazing.

“At the Pesach carnival bike show, we observed that the first few rows of people blocked the view of those who were standing behind them,” Dr. Roberts said. “We realized that we would need bleachers for future shows.”

“For this Succos carnival, we knew that the trampoline acrobats would solve the visibility problem since they would be high in the air. For the dog show, we placed it at the bottom of a hill with the expectation that the hill would serve as bleachers. This did not work. The incline of the hill was insufficient to substitute for bleachers. We’ll have to do something differently next time.”

As for the shows, “both shows were great,” says Dr. Roberts. “We’ll consider bringing back one or both of those shows and look at other shows. We screen the shows for music, lyrics, frumkeit of the topic, sneas, and interest to our attendees, so there is some work involved in the screening process. We looked at, but rejected for various reasons, for this carnival an African drum show, a science show, a reptile show, and a bird show.”

“Lastly, I am considering a Lakewood-frum-child talent show where we will pre-screen the acts and put on local frum kids with a showman talent for maybe 10 minutes each. This could be done between the other shows or it could run as a third show while the other two shows alternate.”

“For the cotton candy, we finished most of the 600 pounds of sugar. For the popcorn, Rabbi Ely plans to create a device to speed the filling of bags with the popped popcorn to increase the rate of distribution since we made popcorn faster than we could bag it. This will only apply to the next Succos since corn is kitneas on Pesach.”

The system of marking the hands of children who received the jawbreaker or bicycle light worked well in assuring that they distributed only one jawbreaker and bicycle light per child, says Dr. Roberts. “This slowed the lines a bit but we have no choice given past experience.”

And as for the bit of rain, Dr. Roberts says the decision to keep the event on Monday was thought out too.

“I had to make a decision on Sunday afternoon if the carnival would be on Monday or be delayed until Tuesday. On Sunday afternoon, the Monday weather forecast was for hourly chances of rain were about 8% for most of the day but about 31% in the first hour of the carnival. Tuesday was supposed to be warmer and partly sunny. However, the problem with moving the carnival to the rain date of Tuesday was that the Wednesday forecast was for heavy rain. If I moved the carnival to Tuesday when I had to make the decision on Sunday, and the Wednesday rain moved forward, then there might be no carnival at all. Therefore, I stayed with Monday and we only had a few short cases of a drizzle.”

[TLS. Photos by TLS-YR/TLS-HM/Lakewood Shopper]

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  1. Nu. With this is farentfered alleh shevere kashes.
    Looking very much forward to the next biur hadvarim after pesach habah aleinu letova .

  2. Thank you !!!! My kids all enjoyed!!!!! U did a terrific job!!!!!! One thought to share as a request..one of the older boys.who was running a ride took his job too seriously and if a child waiting on line for 45 min wasn’t behaving or was pushing he kicked them off the line!!!! I think a litttle more understanding couldve been shown but when I tried to explain this to him he got angry and defensive….maybe this can be explained to the boys maning the booths and rides…we came to have a good time and my kid was yelled at by a stranger for being a kid… I understand that he needs to control the crowd but there was noone to control…it wss a nice organized long line …the parents were in control of the kids and a.little pushing is a misunderstanding which I was about to take care of…all of us parents were there watching our kids and were shocked at his behavior. ..I did look around for someone in charge but only saw some women helping the “missing kids”….thank you for the great day.

  3. Dear Dr. Richie Roberts on behalf of Lakewood I would like to thank you for all that you’ve done in the past. However, since Pinepark cannot handle 10,000 people, I have a suggestion. Maybe you should rent out an amusement park like Kingsburg or Blackbeards cave to accommodate the massive crowds. Thank you

  4. All I can say to you Dr. Roberts is THANK YOU! I see from your article that you really put the time in to understand the needs of the Lakewood community.

  5. Dear Mr Roberts
    The event was excellent thank you
    Some suggestions:
    The bleachers ( but you beat me to it)
    Cotton candy there are companies kosher that sell premade cotton candy on a stick would definitely speed things up
    Ditto for the popcorn
    The jawbreakers were great thanks my dentist thanks you for the smaller versions this year
    Love the talent show idea , maybe hire Mich Cohn to be Emcee ?

    Otherwise everything was perfect , and your smile alone was worth a million dollars 😉

  6. Ashrecha, R’ Roberts ! What a z’chus in zman simchaseinu to bring Simcha to 10-15,000 ppl is amazing. May H-shem continue to grant u the koach to continue ur holy work Ad Bias Goel – and then after that, L’netzach !!

  7. I appreciate the fact that you always comment and answer any suggestions. It is great that not only do you put on this great event but you actually explain your thought process

  8. Dr. Roberts, I know I speak on behalf of thousands of Lakewood families. As I drove towards Pine Park that day, in a line of hundreds of cars, my eyes welled up with tears. B”H, we live in a town filled with Chessed. Especially before Yom Tov, there are so many organizations that offer financial help with food, clothing, and Yom Tov needs. However, they are only available to those who are low-income. There are so many of us, middle-class citizens, who earn respectable salaries, but still cannot make ends meet! We also find the Yom Tov expenses too much to cover! But we don’t qualify for the typical help that is offered to low-income families. We also don’t qualify for all the govt programs. Dr. Roberts, you are the only one who doesn’t diffrentiate based on income. Even those of us who are not poor can come and enjoy, which is a tremendous financial relief for us! THANK YOU!!! A special thank you to Mrs. Roberts and the Roberts children. As a wife of a community worker, I know the support needed from the wives and children of those who do Chessed for others! THANK YOU!

  9. firstly dr roberts is such an ish emes ” ive done way more than a 1000 hachnasas sifrei torah but his heartfelt speech at his years ago directed at the public and the mashgiach shlita ( zul gezunt zein)was one etched in memory
    a few points as far as the event-
    bleachers cost $10 per seat ( yes anytime you see bleachers at an event its approx 300 dollars for a section that holds 25-30 ppl
    super size daylight led screens is whats used in these situations
    and when you have this size oilam kein yirbu -u need to use only prepakgd nosh be it italian ices ….brownie bar whatever…
    lastly as far as the talent show – its a good idea i’ve done it munkatch camp ” we made our own ” circus of the kids ” on visiting day
    renting out a amusement park is also worth considering – kolko can get you a good deal- brocho vehatzlacha

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