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(Skokie, IL) Integrating water, wood, and greenery, the imaginative new Lillian and Larry Goodman City Park in Be’er-Sheva, Israel is, as the Patriarch Abraham said about the city, a true oasis in the desert.
Supported by a lead gift from the Skokie-based Lillian and Larry Goodman Foundations, and situated in the heart of the city, the Park’s three strip design is intended to become a new and iconic image for the city—a modern oasis and developing metropolis.
On the evening of May 6, 2013 a dedication ceremony was held in Be’er-Sheva where the city’s mayor, Ruvik Danilovich acknowledged Mr. Goodman for making his dream for the park become reality. “This city has undergone some amazing transformations economically, culturally, and now aesthetically. Without the support of dear friend Larry Goodman, Be’er-Sheva would not be what it is today.”
For nearly two decades the Goodman Family has long-been inspired and guided by Ben-Gurion’s vision that the future of Israel lays in its Southern region, a desert area occupying 60% of the country’s landmass. The family’s Foundation has supported educational, cultural, and social service projects that further advance the development of Be’er-Sheva. “It is crucial for the further growth of Be’er-Sheva and the Negev, to create beauty that will positively enrich the lives of its residents and attract tourists. This park will continue to heighten the City’s recognition across the country, and across the globe,” said Larry Goodman.
The design symbolizes renewal which is expressed throughout the City Parks’ one acre lot in the center of the City. The water element features a thin, shallow strip of water with 80 jets creating a graceful liquid choreography, especially at night when the lights dance and change color. The dry strip area is a sculptured wood surface for sitting and relaxing. The third strip is a landscaped park on gently sloped hills.
The Goodman Foundation has supported many initiatives in Be’er-Sheva including the Bat-Dor Dance Center; Ben-Gurion University Train Station; L&L Goodman Child and Family Center; the Acting School and Theatre of the Negev; and contributions to Soroka Medical Center, Ilan Ramon Play Park, and Ben-Gurion University.
The Lillian and Larry Goodman Foundations is a family foundation dedicated to strengthening Jewish life in Chicago and Israel, as well as improving the quality of life within the Chicago metropolitan area by supporting secular organizations that address hunger issues and promote the prevention of drug abuse. The Lillian and Larry Goodman Foundations are based in Skokie, Illinois.