For those not satisfied with kosher pickles this Valentine’s Day, UCSB’s Jewish student group, Hillel, offers the more romantic Kosher Meet Market tonight at 7.
Hillel organized the event as a matchmaker benefit for Jewish singles in time for St. Valentine’s Day. Members promise entertainment, eager dates and edible treats. Hillel held the first Kosher Meet Market in the Hub last year, but with a larger budget of approximately $1000, the group is holding this year’s event at the Milton Roisman Jewish Student Center at 781 Embarcadero del Mar.
All proceeds from the Meet Market will be donated to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Entry is free, but a minimum $2 donation is suggested.
“The goal we have is very fluid. We received close to $1,400 in total budget and donations and hope to at least match that,” Hillel JCSC Fellow and graduate student Lisa Weiss said. “Hey, we figure $2 is going to cost you less than having to go to a bar to meet your match.”
The night is divided into three parts: “Speed Dating,” involving 30-second quick match-up conversation; “Singled Out,” Jewish style; and a date auction with five single men and women.
“This is the hugest event at Hillel this year,” sophomore Committee Chairperson Tamara Wheatley said. “We’ve been working on this since October and I’m so happy to see it finally come together.”
Wheatley and another committee members will host the show, which will likely begin closer to 7:30 p.m. after all attendees have gone through registration to receive nametags and numbers. All who attend will participate in the first two activities of the night.
After the fast-paced “Speed Dating,” in which couples chat for just seconds before meeting a new partner, the show will proceed directly into “Singled Out.”
“It’s designed as a Jewish-themed version so that we’ll ask for their favorite celebrity like Adam Sandler or Ben Stiller,” Wheatley said. “Or we may ask for a famous Jewish religious figure. Something like that, but still all in good fun.”
“It ought to be a lot of fun,” committee member Robert Winston said. “After all, what guy wouldn’t want 40 girls competing for his attention?”
The night will conclude with a date auction, in which participants bid on seven eligible men and six eligible women. The auctioned individual comes with a dinner and date activity donated by more than 20 local businesses.
A 12-person committee comprised of members of Alpha Epsilon Pi, Alpha Epsilon Phi, Sigma Kappa and Hillel distributed bags filled with Sweetheart candies throughout campus and Francisco Torres to advertise the event.
“Everybody has put in 10 times more work than you could ever ask a committee to do,” Weiss said.
Attendants are urged to wear semi-formal date attire and be on time to secure places in “Singled Out” and “Speed Dating.”
“This event should be so great for getting the word out about Hillel, allowing people to meet each other and just having a great time,” Winston said.