BSM and Beth El connection includes more than just parking


BSM students have the luxury of being able to park in the Beth El parking lot.

Maddie Hibbs, staff writer

For 12 years BSM students have had the luxury of being able to park in the Beth El parking lot. Along with the parking agreements comes the unlikely friendship that benefits the continually growing community of BSM and their Jewish neighbors at the Beth El synagogue.

BSM and Beth El’s most commonly known agreement is that of a shared parking lot. “We created this arrangement because both organizations were experiencing parking issues and neither organization had the necessary land to solve the problem, ”Mr. Michael Mooers, BSM’s Vice President of Finance said.

Beth El did not have enough parking spaces for the number of people that attended important services, while BSM faced the problems of sophomores and juniors not having anywhere to park.“ We worked together to create a plan in which both organizations benefit from sharing the parking lot,” Mr. Mooers said.

BSM recently made an adjustment to their main parking lot, extending it when the new fields were built. However BSM still kept their bargain with Beth-El. “We had to expand our parking lot to fulfill the building code requirement relating to our parking lot with the city of St. Louis Park. If we did not expand the parking lot, they would not have approved our plan for the project, ” said Mr. Mooers.

BSM has found many valuable ways to honor the commitment with the synagogue. Beth El is allowed the use of the school on certain weekends. “Not only did BSM graciously allow us to hold worship services in your theater during the high holidays, but our bar mitzvah program and children’s programming meets every Saturday at BSM,”Linda Goldberg Executive Director at Beth El said.

This relationship does not stop at the sharing of parking lots or sharing of the school, but also moves into the community of St. Louis Park. “We invite each other to participate in our various events including Beth El’s National Speaker Series and we support each other by attending city council meetings and speaking on each other’s behalf,” said Linda Goldberg.

Students also give up some things to keep this relationship going; every year during high holidays, BSM students park down the street. “[BSM’s] community is kind enough to let us use your parking lot during our high holiday services which includes having BSM students park at the Jewish Community Center and riding a bus to school for those three days,” said Linda Goldberg.

BSM continues to use Beth El’s parking lot and all their hospitality has gone a long way, “We have a great working relationship with the people at Beth El,” said Mrs. Mary Andersen, Assistant- Principal and Security Director.