As the Portland, Ore., metropolis expands, Chabad-Lubavitch is coordinating its own rapid growth in the city, currently the Pacific Northwest's most populous locale. By the end of the summer, Chabad operations in the Beaver State will double.

According to Charlie Schifman, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Portland, the Jewish population of the area has swelled in recent years.

"When I came to Oregon 20 years ago, there were 8,900 Jews living in Portland," he says. "Today we estimate that there are close to 25,000 Jews here."

The problem, though, is that Schifman's organization knows of only about half that number. And the task of reaching out to Portland's Jews has gotten more difficult as its suburbs and exurbs expand, forming communities of their own.

That's where Chabad of Portland comes in, says co-director Rabbi Moshe Wilhelm. In the coming weeks, Chabad Houses will open in the towns of Bend and South Portland.

"It used to be that Jews living in the distant suburbs would come in to Portland for their basic shopping and once they were here, they would bring their kids to camp, Hebrew School and everything else Jewish," he explains.

"Today, as towns are growing, people are not coming to Portland anymore."

In nearby Salem, Rabbi Yizchok Perlstein, co-director of the community's Chabad House, reports that the town has grown tremendously. Since moving there in February, he and his wife Fruma have established adult education classes, a ladies night out, a hospital visitation program and holiday events. They also deliver challahs and learn one-on-one with community members.

"The town is growing here tremendously," says Perlstein. "Property is cheap, and people are moving out of downtown, which has a lot of traffic.We're here to help them with their Jewish needs."