OU’s Yachad debuts Kosher Grill at Baltimore Ravens stadium
Ravens executive Adam Neuman told eJP that the stand, which is staffed by people with developmental disabilities, has so far been a ‘tremendous success'
As Baltimore Ravens fans returned to M&T Bank Stadium to watch the team pull off a 25-9 win over the Houston Texans in the season opener on Sunday afternoon, kosher diners had an extra reason to cheer.
Yachad’s Kosher Grill, staffed by people with disabilities, opened its first stand at the Ravens stadium on Sunday. Yachad, part of the Orthodox Union (OU), is an organization that works with Jewish individuals with developmental disabilities and their families by promoting communal participation.
Though the OU is well known for its kosher certification, the stand is overseen by Star-K, Baltimore’s local kosher certification agency. Throughout the football season, the grill will serve deli wraps including pastrami, corned beef and turkey, in addition to sushi, hot dogs and an assortment of cold beer. The stand will be open for all Ravens home games this year, except for Sept. 24, Yom Kippur.
“Yachad’s Kosher Grill is staffed by our participants to foster workplace skills and community involvement,” the organization said in its announcement. “You know Yachad is all about boosting educational, employment and relationship opportunities for individuals with unique needs and this is a touchdown for Baltimore.”
Adam Neuman, chief of staff to the president of the Ravens, Sashi Brown, told eJewishPhilanthropy on Monday that Yachad’s Kosher Grill opening was a “tremendous success.”
Neuman said that there are two factors that made Ravens stadium the right place for Yachad to open their first kosher grill.
“We have a robust Jewish community very connected to the Ravens,” Neuman told eJP. “And one of our slogans is ‘Be More for All,’ a play on ‘Baltimore.’”
“We are committed to diversity and amplifying voices,” he continued. “Together we can ‘Be More for Baltimore.’”
The Baltimore Jewish community is one of the largest in the country, with nearly 100,000 members. Kosher food had been a staple of M&T Bank Stadium and Oriole Park at Camden Yards for years, until the former kosher stand, Kosher Grille, closed last year. Neuman said before the OU approached the Ravens with the idea for Yachad’s Kosher Grill, it was unclear whether Charm City football fans would have a kosher dining option this year.
“Staffing the stand is not an easy task,” Neuman said. “Customers want their food quickly. I think this is remarkable, not just for Jews. These are the principles that the Ravens stand for. For this to be here in Baltimore is a feather in the cap of our community.”