"... a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey" -- Deuteronomy 8:8
The color scheme was drawn from a Biblical text. Quotations scattered around the campus are from the Torah (the first five books of the Old Testament), Talmud (rabbinic commentaries on the Torah), and great scholars and writers.
All throughout the new Taube Koret Campus for Jewish Life (which includes the Oshman Family Jewish Community Center and the Moldaw Family Residences) in south Palo Alto, everything is subtly Jewish.
"We wanted to create a Jewish space without it being 'in your face' because lots of non-Jews would be using it," said Randi Brenowitz, community-outreach director.
Visitors to the campus will first notice the mezuzot -- small cases with pieces of parchment with the prayer that begins "Listen, Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One" affixed to every doorpost or gate.
Designed by Los Angeles-based artist Ruth Shapiro, each mezuzah prominently features the pomegranate, mentioned in that Deuteronomy verse.
The landscaping picks up on the other species mentioned in the verse, including prominent fig and olive trees plus date-palm trees.
Across the country, membership in Jewish community centers is about half-Jewish, according to Alan Sataloff, CEO for the Campus. He estimates that about half of the Campus' 6,000 members are not Jewish.
And one doesn't have to be Jewish to send a child to T'enna Preschool or live in the Moldaw Family Residences.
People can use the center without being members, either, Sataloff said, such as those who use the health library or attend cultural events.
"We're open to the entire community," he said.
One way the facility will appear "Jewish," however, is in its closure on major Jewish holidays, such as Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. But the center will be open on Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath.
The Oshman Family Jewish Community Center, a subset of the Campus, is under no official religious umbrella, such as Orthodox, Conservative or Reform.
It is planned as a place where "unaffiliated Jews can find some way of connecting ... not necessarily connecting in a religious way, but in a spiritual or cultural way," Sataloff said.
The center will host lots of cultural programming, educating its members along the way. Recently, signs went up explaining what the holiday of Sukkot is all about.
Some of the arts performances in the town square will be Jewish-oriented, some not.
Children in sports leagues or other programs will be taught leadership and ethics based on concepts of Judaism, he said. But, he added, they are shared values among many people.
"While the values themselves come from Jewish texts, there's nothing to say we own it."