NORWICH – Faculty members of Syracuse Universities College of Arts and Sciences and its Judaic studies program visited Norwich Thursday night to celebrate restoration efforts being made to the Jewish Center following the vandalism in 2008.
There was a reception at the Chenango County Council of the Arts at 5 p.m. followed by speeches from people in the community and SU representatives about the importance of the project, as well as a film from Martha Brower illustrating the original damage and the state of the repairs.
“It’s been a remarkable process that brought many people together ... and has resulted in bonds between Norwich and the Jewish community in Syracuse and Binghamton, as well as with [SU],” said James Fertig, a Norwich attorney who first thought to contact the university. “I just wanted to see if there was anyone there involved in glass making who would be interested in doing repairs as part of their curriculum.”
The vicious defacement of the Jewish Center, located at 70-76 South Broad St., included $200,000 worth of damage to leaded stained-glass windows, furniture, and religious artifacts, as well as anti-Semitic graffiti scrawled on walls of the building, which led the Norwich Police Department to classify the burglary as a hate crime and notified the FBI.