The annual gala for St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital on Sept. 15 at Anthony’s Pier 9 in New Windsor raised close to $300,000. The event was titled “The Renaissance of Healthcare.” The gala is an annual success, with support coming from hospital donors, attendees and friends. Proceeds will be used to support the hospital’s programs and initiatives. A silent auction included a 1930s Ford Model A that sold when new for $525. It was generously donated by Lee Murphy and Jaci Canning Murphy of Cornwall. It raised more than $19,000.

Coming up

• SUNY Orange Foundation Leadership Awards were given recently through the college Foundation which was established in 1987. During the 2018-19 academic year, the Foundation anticipates awarding more than $400,000 in scholarships to deserving SUNY Orange students. This year’s awards went to Cynthia MacMahon, SUNY Orange chemistry professor, Lauren Rowley, vice president of Libertyville Capital group, Leadership in Community, and Port Jervis Police Chief William Worden, Class of 1992, Alumni Leadership. Also Edward A. Diana, former Orange County Executive, Alumni Leadership, Dr. Timothy MacMahon, SUNY Orange chemistry professor, Leadership in Education, Alfred Fusco III and Alfred Fusco Jr., both representing Fusco Engineering and Land Surveying, Leadership in Business.

• The Jewish holiday of Sukkot (Tabernacles) celebrates the fall harvest as well as the time the ancient Israelites were wandering in the desert. Sukkot features eating meals in the sukkah, a temporary booth, as well as shaking four species of branches and leaves from which the shelter was made: The etrog (citron), myrtle, willow and palm frond which symbolize the various agricultural areas of the Land of Israel. The members of Temple Beth Jacob of Newburgh, led by Rabbi Larry Freedman, built one of the finest sukkahs I’ve seen. During the holiday, which was Sept. 24-Oct. 1, many people visited the sukkah and had their meals there. MiaJoe Levy walked around the hut shaking the lulav and etrog (vegetation gathered in the desert to build the hut) as their ancestors may have done. Temple members enjoy the sukkah getting larger every year. Sadly this year there was a lot of rain. With an open ceiling, closed just enough with small branches and corn stalks so visitors can lean back and see the stars, meals and services were moved inside the temple. The sukkah seats 100, but with the inclement weather it wasn’t used as much as in previous years, but just about everyone knew it was there and enjoyed it for a day or two.

Barbara Bedell’s column appears daily. She can be reached at 346-3125 or by email