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Theresienstadt Survivor to Speak at Breman PAGE 14

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News Bites from the Jewish State PAGE 17

SEPTEMBER 7, 2012 - SEPTEMBER 13, 2012



New Play to Premiere at Alliance Theatre PAGES 22-23

20 Elul - 26 Elul 5772, Vol. LXXXVII No. 36

THE Weekly Newspaper Uniting the Jewish Community for Over 85 Years



Temple Kol Emeth’s Tasting and Entertainment Festival a Huge Success PAGE 8

Fantasy and Fiction Come Alive at Dragon*Con 2012



Hundreds Attend Learning & Enrichment Retreat at Ramah Darom | Page 9





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FOX 5 News Features the Epstein School



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Top: While interviewing Epstein’s Head of School Stan Beiner for a feature on internet safety, Fox News reporter Tacoma Perry became so intrigued by The Epstein School’s blended education concept that she included this in her report as a highlight. Bottom: Fox News’s Tacoma Perry spoke with Epstein middle school literature teacher Kathyrn Godwin to discuss the increasingly important role of technology in education and how even the school’s furniture will be adapted for the 21st century. PHOTOS/Coleen Lou

As a leader in technology education, Epstein is committed to being proactive in addressing issues surrounding internet safety with parents, students and faculty. Internet safety is an integral part of the learning curriculum for all students at the school, and this will become increasingly more important as the school moves toward a blended education model. As part of a redesign of the school’s educational approach, the Epstein faculty has set the goals of empowering students to take more ownership of their education and enabling teachers to become more effective facilitators of learning. In a blended education model, technology is seen as a fully integrated and essential component of education rather than an enhancement or supplement. Today’s children are already wired and connected, and the online

experience is a natural part of their daily lives. In our high-tech world, information literacy is essential in building a foundation for success in the 21st century. On her visit to the school, FOX’s Perry became so intrigued by the



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View our Comprehensive Range and Online Ordering: blended education concept that she included this in her report as a highlight. She was particularly struck by the fact that even the school’s furniture must change to adapt to 21stcentury learning. “The current education model most of us grew up with was created as a byproduct of the Industrial Revolution centuries ago,” Epstein’s Beiner said. “Blended learning serves the needs of a new world, and we are very excited to be making the necessary shifts to prepare our children for a tomorrow that changes every day.”

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OX 5 News featured The Epstein School in a recent television segment on in what began as a feature on online safety. In the segment, FOX reporter Tacoma Perry interviewed Head of School Stan Beiner, Epstein middle school literature teacher Kathyrn Godwin and Ben Halpert, an expert in the field of internet safety.

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from our readers

Those with Special Needs Not Abandoned All That Glitters…


Dear Editor:


Dear Editor:

e are writing in response to the letter “Those with Special Needs are Underserved” in the Aug. 31 edition of the Atlanta Jewish Times. While we agree that we still have work to do when it comes to offering educational opportunities to all Jewish children in our community, we must disagree with the comment that “Jewish kids with special needs have been abandoned.”

Atlanta is very fortunate to have many opportunities for students who learn differently in both our day schools and in our congregational schools. Yet, due to a variety of reasons, there are still children who fall between the cracks. The Amit Gar’inim School was created to fill that void. Davis Academy generously opened their doors to Amit in 2002, allowing us to create a school program that has met the individual needs of many students over the past 10 years. While there have been internal changes in recent years, Gar’inim continues to offer a robust academic and social curriculum that allows students with a variety of disabilities including ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorders and other learning disabilities to flourish. The administration, staff and lay leaders of Amit have been exploring options that will allow us to not only grow the program to serve those children who have unique learning needs not currently addressed in our existing programs but also to enhance the programming offered to our current students. The Atlanta Jewish community still has work to do in their effort to find ways to more fully include all individuals with special needs, both young and old, into our day schools, congregational schools, synagogues and agencies. Atlanta is far ahead of many cities around the country and has much to be proud of. This year the Jewish Special Needs Consortium – made up of The Amit Program, Jewish Family & Career Services Disability Department, the Blonder Family Department for Developmental Disabilities at the Marcus Jewish Community Center, Friendship Circle, Camp Yofi and Camp Living Wonders – will host the first-annual Jewish Inclusion Conference on Jan. 27 at The Epstein School. This will be a day for our clergy, lay leaders, educators, other professionals and family members to come together and learn ways to welcome all people into our communities. We encourage all those who feel that the special needs community is underserved to join us on Jan. 27 and help our community continue on the path that was started many years ago by a small group of very dedicated parents and community leaders who had a vision of an inclusive community. As we enter the High Holy Days, we all must ask ourselves what we have personally done to make a difference. How have I volunteered my time? What can I do to help make school options affordable for families of children with special needs? How can we serve the children in our community who are the most vulnerable? Together may we create an inclusive community for those with special needs. L’Shanah Tovah Tikatevu. Sincerely, Ina Enoch, President of the Board, The Amit Program Linda Zimmerman, Executive Director, The Amit Program

n his interesting article [see the Aug. 24 edition of the AJT for “Does Knowledge Equal Power?”, Prof. Schoenfeld writes of Muslim tolerance to Jews during the “golden age” of Spain.

As noted by Jewish scholars of Middle Eastern origin, this was largely an idealization, even a myth, promoted by Jewish historians of European origin. The Rambam, Moses Maimonides, had to flee Spain in the 12th century because of Almohad Muslim persecution, long before the Inquisition. Eventually, Maimonides did find refuge in a more moderate Muslim ruled Egypt. However, even there, there were hardships. In 1172 CE, in his famous letter to the Jews of Yemen, he wrote “The nation of Ishmael persecute us severely… none has matched it in debasing and humiliating us.” Jews faced restrictions on dress, employment, movement and residence into the 19th and 20th centuries. The platitude that Arabs and Jews lived in harmony until the rise of Zionism is false. Hostility dates back to the conflict between the Prophet Mohammed and the Jews of Medina, who were massacred after refusing to convert. There were periods of enlightenment, but recent books – such as the relatively optimistic “In Ishmael’s House” by Sir Martin Gilbert and the more pessimistic “The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism” by Andrew Bostom – present a more realistic assessment of what earlier European Jewish scholars described as “the golden age.” Sincerely, Doron Lubinsky, Atlanta

Other Way ‘Round Dear Editor: Are you aware that the kosher symbols on your cover [see the Aug. 24 edition of the AJT] were printed backwards? I very much enjoyed Arlene Appelrouth’s article about satisfying a larger family made up of individuals of varying levels of observance, but I couldn’t help but notice that the kosher symbols were flipflopped.

And no, I wasn’t looking at the paper in the mirror.

Sincerely, Joan Kurtis, Lawrenceville Editor’s note: The AJT took a creative turn with the cover teaser in question. As the text read “How to Vacation Kosher…and Stay Sane!”, we opted to mirror the images, as though they’d gotten “all turned around,” as one very well might in a situation such as that which Arlene described.

The AJT apologizes for any confusion this may have caused.


September 14 Rosh Hashana*


*The September 14 Rosh Hashana issue will enjoy expanded distribution at most Atlanta Synagogues for all congregants to enjoy.

September 21 yom Kippur* *The September 21 Yom Kippur issue will enjoy expanded distribution at most Atlanta Synagogues for all congregants to enjoy.

Please contact your AJT sales rep at 404.883.2130 for more information and preferential rates. Email Jeff Silberblatt at: to reserve your ad space!

October 5 and 12 Education





ol hakavod to Sophia Cayla Schwartz, 7, who donated her hair to the “Locks of Love” program, which helps disadvantaged children suffering from medical hair loss by providing wigs made of real hair. This makes two times the youngster has grown out her hair to give to this great cause. Sophia, the daughter of Michael Schwartz and Dr. Belinda Marcus and sister of Zachary Schwartz, attends the Epstein School and is in the second grade. When she left school at the end of the first grade, her friends saw her with a long pony tail; then, when students returned for this new school year, she surprised all with a new hairdo. When asked why she donated her hair, she said that she wanted to give it to a child in need of a wig. At first, she though about saving money to buy a wig, but then decided to give her own hair.

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according to arlene


OVERCOMING ANGER AND HATRED By Arlene Appelrouth AJT Columnist “To avoid being hurt by thorns and brambles, we might consider covering all the mountains with leather. That would be impossible, but putting on shoes would serve the same purpose. Similarly, if we tried to subdue all our outer enemies, we would never succeed; once one was eliminated, another would rise against us. While doing this, our anger would continue to breed new foes. The only way to overcome our enemies is to turn inward and kill the real one, which is our own hatred.”


When I found the above quote in my mailbox recently, it brought to mind a recent conversation I had with a seven-year-old Jewish boy who attends an Orthodox day school. “All the goyim are bad,” he said, beginning a conversation. I thought I misheard and asked him what he said. “I said all the goyim are bad,” he repeated with passion. “The goyim all want to kill all the Jews.” I looked at this child, an extroverted boy who took great pleasure in life. He loved books. He was curious and a good student. His statement about the goyim was made in a way that told me this belief was something he had learned. “Why do you say that?” I asked, having decided to explore rather than be

critical and talk about my belief that prejudice is not a good thing.

Jews agreed before hearing any of the commandments.

my mother, who also had primarily Jewish friends.

“Hashem,” he said, which is how observant Jews refer to G-d. “Hashem gave the Torah to the Jews. The goyim were jealous and they have been trying to kill us ever since.”

I was not about to quote midrash to the seven-year-old day school student, but I did tell him that I thought the Torah might have been offered to other nations before the Jews, and that if other nations (goyim) hated us, it was for another reason.

But that was not my experience. When we moved to Miami, my parents bought a home in the northwest part of Dade County. Frequently, I would be one of two or maybe three Jewish students in each class.

I immediately thought about a midrash I had learned in one of the many Jewish classes I’ve taken. A midrash – just in case you don’t know – is a story or interpretation of something found in the “oral Torah” which helps explain the meaning of the Biblical passage. Parenthetically: Whenever I study either the Torah or the oral Torah, I need all the interpretations, commentaries and help that I can find. Although, to be honest, I frequently resist the teachings of midrash. Anyway, the midrash I was thinking of says the Torah was first offered to one nation that asked what it said before agreeing to accept it. When they heard the Torah had a commandment not to murder, they refused it. Another nation asked what it would mean for them. They were told it meant they would be forbidden to steal. They turned it down. Several other nations also rejected the Torah because they were unwilling to accept its commandments. But when the Torah was offered to the Jewish people, they said na’aseh venishma which means “we will do (or observe) and we will hear (or listen).” Clearly, the impression is the Jews made an unconditional commitment to do whatever G-d would say; according to the great rabbinical sage Rashi, the

Shabbat Candle Lighting Times shabbat blessings Blessing for the Candles Baruch Arah A-do-nai,El-o-hei-nu Melech Haolam Asher Kid-shanu b’mitzvotav V’zivanu l’hadlik ner shel Shabbat

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

Blessed are You, Eternal our God, Sovereign of time and space. You hallow us with Your mitzvot and command us to kindle the lights of Shabbat.


Blessing for thw Wine Baruch Atah A-do-nai, El-o-hei-nu Meelech Haolam, Borei p’ri hagafen Praise to You, Eternal our God, Sovereign of the Universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine. Blessing for the Bread (Challah) Baruch Atah A-do-nai, El-o-hei-nu Melech haolam, Hamotzi Lechem min haaretz. Our Praise to You Eternal our God, Sovereign of the universe, Who brings forth bread from the earth.

Friday, September 7, 2012 Light Candles at: 7:37 pm Shabbat, September 8, 2012 Shabbat Ends: 8:31 pm Friday, September 14, 2012 Light Candles at: 7:27 pm Shabbat, September 15, 2012 Shabbat Ends: 8:21 pm Eve of First day Rosh Hashana Sunday, September 16, 2012 Light Candles at: 7:24 pm Eve of Second day Rosh Hashana Monday, September 17, 2012 Light Candles after: 8:18 pm Tuesday, September 18, 2012 Holiday Ends: 8:17 pm

Then, I thought about Jewish holidays. Many Jews get together for celebratory meals without understanding the historical significance of the holidays. It’s all the same for many Jews. They explain holidays this way: “They wanted to kill all of us. They didn’t. Let’s eat.” This sort of Jewish history – extremely over-simplified – admittedly does support the view of the boy who had engaged me in conversation. But this was not the first time I had come across such blatant prejudice; I am the granddaughter of four European immigrants, all of whom came to North America to escape religious persecution and the poverty it created. When I was 12 years old, I was looking forward to attending my first dance at my junior high. My mother shared the news with my grandmother, who I called “the Babba,” and the Babba began to interrogate me. “Who are you going with?” she asked, in her thick Yiddish accent. I gave her the name of my date, which was either Terry Emerson or Bill Repshire. I can’t remember which, even though I went to dances with both. “That doesn’t sound like a Yiddishe name,” she surmised. “So what?” I asked, not getting her drift. “Arlene, you should only go with Jewish boys,” she reminded me. She and my mother had been telling me I was expected to marry a Jewish boy long before I had any ideas about dating. “He’s only a friend, Babba,” I replied, probably rolling my eyes. “We’re not getting married. I am 12 years old.” My grandmother stared at me. She pointed her index finger for emphasis before speaking. “Love is only a step away from friendship,” she proclaimed. “You should only have Jewish friends.” My grandmother only had Jewish friends. Her experience had taught her not to trust anyone else, and she managed to convey that message to

Furthermore, I did not have the opportunity to go to Sunday school to get a Jewish education. Frankly, I did not differentiate between Jews and non-Jews, and it always surprised and annoyed me when I would talk about a friend,and the first question I was asked was: “Is he (or she) Jewish?” As an American-born person who has always lived in a culture that consists of people who practice or do not practice religion, it never made sense to me to choose my friends based on religion. My education – and by that I mean the secular education I received in college – has taught me that religion is what is responsible for prejudice, hatred of “the other” and the desire to kill all the infidels who have different beliefs. And I know I’m not the only one who feels this way. When I moved to Atlanta in 1977, I admit I was surprised by what the Atlanta culture was like. “Where are you from?” was the first question everyone asked; “what do you do?” was the second question; and “where do you go to church?” was the third. In my experience, Atlantans in the ‘70s, were divided according to church affiliation. Before too much time passed, my husband Dan and I did affiliate within the Jewish community, and we have been active ever since. I still flinch, however, when I hear a child, or an adult, express generalized prejudice. As a human being, I tend to be inclusive. I look for what I have in common with others, not at what separates us. I have learned to appreciate what it means to be a Jew, and have become someone who is continually learning more about Jewish history, practices and beliefs. I never exposed my children to an attitude that “the goyim are all bad.” And if this attitude is being taught in any day schools, I wish they would rethink their curriculum. Editor’s note: Arlene Appelrouth earned a degree in news-editorial journalism from the University of Florida and her career as a writer and journalist spans a 50-year period; she currently studies memoir writing while working on her first book.



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nibble & noshfest



or the third year, Nibble and Noshfest at Temple Kol Emeth enticed the community



and entertainment over Labor Day weekend. The two-day festival gave visitors a taste of Jewish and other ethnic and traditional foods, all sold in “sample-size” portions priced from $1 to $4. Additionally to the food, the event featured a range of entertainment from music to live interactive demonstrations; the evening of Sept. 2 featured a Comedy Night with Steve Mittleman. Additionally, scores of artists and craftspeople sold their wares in this lively setting and tours of the culture-rich Temple Kol Emeth sanctuary were offered. The festival once again took part in the “Have a Nosh, Share a Nosh” program: Visitors brought two non-perishable food items that will be donated to Must

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

Ministries to fight hunger.




LimmudFest 2012 Celebrates Jewish Culture & Learning HUNDREDS TURN OUT FOR LABOR DAY WEEKEND ENRICHMENT


or the fourth year in a row, Jews from all over the Southeast gathered in Clayton, Ga. at Camp Ramah Darom Retreat and Conference Center for LimmudFest Southeast, a three-day event held over Labor Day weekend. Over four days, 70 sessions were offered by presenters ranging from university professors and rabbis to ordinary people with passions and knowledge to share. This year’s headliners included Prof. Deborah Lipstadt, Josh Nelson, Jakir Manela, Jeffrey Schein, Zion Ozeri and comedy troupe the Bible Players. The Fest is part of the growing international “Limmud” movement, launched more than 30 years ago in England. Beyond the aforementioned sessions, attendees participated in Jewish meditation, text study, performances, film, politics, hiking, swimming, communal Kosher meals and even pickle-making.

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his year’s edition of Dragon*Con – the largest multimedia and popular culture convention focusing on science fiction and fantasy, gaming, comics, literature, art, music and film in the universe – turned Atlanta into a veritable storm of fans, guests and vendors over Labor Day Weekend 2012. Jewish guests included Marvel Comics’ Stan Lee (pictured on this week’s cover), “Incredible Hulk” writer Peter David, actress Juliet Landau of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” fame, “The Vampire Diaries” star Kat Graham, Saul Rubinek of SyFy’s “Warehouse 13” and many more. Costumed Con-goers portrayed superheroes from Superman to the X-Men’s Kitty Pryde, video game characters from Nathan Drake (“Uncharted”) to Wrex (“Mass Effect”) and an assortment of TV, movie and music icons. Other attendees got extracreative and took on pop culture references – such as Facebook – for their get-ups.

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

Photos by Lauren Volkerding and Gary Witte


SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

AJT dragon*con




Dragon*Con Q & A: Jane Espenson and Brad Bell WRITERS, ACTORS IN GREENSTEIN’S “HUSBANDS” SHARE awards-nominee is teaming up with another well-known and prolific TV writer – Jane Espenson, of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Once Upon a Time” and many other popular shows – as well as an up-and-coming Internet phenom, Brad Bell.

By Lauren Volkerding

For the Atlanta Jewish Times


tlanta-native Jeff Greenstein – a television writer, producer and director with such credits as “Desperate Housewives,” “Will & Grace” and “Friends” to his name – is giving something new a try with the web series “Husbands.”

As part of their appearance at Atlanta’s Dragon*Con, Espenson and Bell – plus his “Husbands” co-star Sean Hemeon – sat down with the Atlanta Jewish Times. After chatting potential work with Stan Lee (Espen-

For this new venture, the Emmy-, Producer’s Guild- and Writer’s Guild-

son expressed serious interest) and favorite “Buffy” episodes (“The Musical,” from the fifth season of the show, was Espenson’s pick; meanwhile, Bell couldn’t pick just one), the interviewees talked about their current project, which is also being released as a comic. Atlanta Jewish Times: Tell us about working in a new medium, the web series. Jane Espenson: It’s a new medium, but it’s also an old medium. It really is just television translated into a new screen – but even that “different screen” is changing. So it really feels to me more like a continuation more than a revolution.



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I met my friend Brad Bell – also known as Cheeks – and he comes out of the world of pure internet; pure imagination. He is a YouTube star, and he sort of opened my eyes to the fact that there was this other kind of television.

whether or not that’s in film or comics. Alfred Hitchcock said that you should be able to turn the sound off and know exactly what the story’s about. And when it comes to studying film, I think you should be able to tell a ton of information from a frame and from storyboards. Before “Husbands,” I had worked with story-boarding in a short film I was apart of but no, I had not worked specifically in comic books. But I am a big “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” fan, both the movie and the comic. Part of what I loved so much about the movie is that it translated so well that ability to tell you all that information and all that action. AJT: So pitch “Husbands” to the average reader of the Atlanta Jewish Times. BB: It’s a newlywed comedy with a 20thcentury spin.

JE: It’s a newlywed From left to right, Brad Bell, He had this comedy in a marJane Espenson and Sean Hemeon idea that we could riage equality world. of the web series “Husbands.” make a show on Two young men who Photo by Lauren Volkerding our own, withhaven’t been dating out having to go very long celebrate through the pitcha marriage equality ing process and getting a network on amendment and wake up married in board and then being part of the net- Vegas. work machine. We could just find a They now have the right to be show we want to do and do it. married just like anyone else, and [When we got started on this] I they are going to make every misknew I could keep working in conven- take that every newlywed couple will tional television. I’m working now on make. If you love romantic comedy – “Once Upon A Time,” which I love. no, if you love happiness – you will “Warehouse 13” is still in progress. love “Husbands.” AJT: The “Husbands” comics are also coming out now. Brad: Had you worked in any sort of comic book sense before? Were you a fan of comics? Brad Bell: I have always appreciated the aesthetic of visual story telling,

Editor’s note: “Husbands” is available via Internet video sites Blip, YouTube and Roku.


Congregation Shearith Israel 1180 University Drive NE, 30306 Atlanta 30306 Havdalah & Catered Reception Study With our Rabbis Followed by Services RSVP

CONGREGATION ETZ CHAIM Shalom J. Lewis, Rabbi Paul D. Kerbel, Rabbi Scott A. Rittenberg, President (770) 973-0137

CONGREGATION BETH SHALOM Mark H. Zimmerman, Rabbi Jeff Budd, President (770) 399-5300

CONGREGATION GESHER L’TORAH Michael Bernstein, Rabbi Don Pozin, President (770) 777-4009

CONGREGATION B’NAI TORAH Joshua Z. Heller, Rabbi Eytan Kenter, Associate Rabbi Kenneth Sonenshine, President (404) 257-0537

CONGREGATION OR HADASH Dr. Analia Bortz, Rabbi Mario Karpuj, Rabbi Betsy Edelman, President (404) 250-3338

CONGREGATION SHEARITH ISRAEL Hillel Norry, Rabbi Tal Frank, President (404) 873-1743

CAMP RAMAH DAROM David Krueger, President Frederick R. Levick, Chief Executive Officer Geoffrey Menkowitz, Camp Director (404) 531-0801 THE EPSTEIN SCHOOL Stan Beiner, Head of School Ted Blum, President (404) 250-5600

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A Thereisenstadt Survivor Bears Witness REINER SHARES EXPERIENCE OF ADOLESCENCE IN HOLOCAUST By Suzi Brozman AJT Columnist


s part of the Breman Jewish Heritage & Holocaust Museum’s ongoing monthly series of portraits of Holocaust survivors, Czechosolvakian Ilse Eichner Reiner will speak at the Museum on Sept. 9. Reiner is one of only about 120 survivors out of over 15,000 children who were interned there. Her story is both heartbreaking and uplifting; while she was traumatized by her experiences – which included time as a slave laborer, a forced death march, the horrors of Auschwitz, Birkenau and more – it is her experience with the other children in Thereisenstadt that she chooses to share. An only child who had been orphaned before her captivity, she became close with other children in the camp. In the two years she spent there (roughly, from when she was 12

to 14), she became close to other children in the camp. They stole food for one another, despite the threat of punishment or death if they were found out; they cared for their friends, even picking lice from each other’s bodies; and they stay in touch to this day. At the Sept. 9 event, she will discuss what it meant to be a child in this surreal environment. Terezin offered incredible exposure to the arts; it was not an extermination camp, but rather a place for the artistically elite and their children, so people were given the opportunity to experience music, writing and other forms of art by real professionals in their craft. But one by one these people were removed, shipped out to extermination camps. After her father was taken away, llse and her mother had to live in the attic of their home while a non-Jew took possession of the house. Discovered by the Gestapo, her mother was taken away and Ilse was sent to a Peyton Alexander 404-373-plus (7587) Georgia Power’s Earth¢ents program has rebates to help pay for insulation improvements to you home which will make it more comfortable and save you money on your energy bills.

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Jewish orphanage for months before being moved to Theresienstadt. Along her journey, she was guided and helped by many people, a testament to human goodness in a time of terror.

Ilse Reiner

After the war, she was taken in by a Christian family in her hometown. Eventually, family members brought her to the United States, where she married, reared a family and eventually settled in Atlanta and became active in the community.

This edition of Bearing Witness will feature an interview with Reiner to be conducted by Lili Baxter, director of the Weinberg Center at the Breman. The program is sponsored by Eternal Life Hemshech, the Atlanta organization of Holocaust survivors. Reiner’s talk will be accompanied by a performance by the Atlanta Young Singers of Callanwolde, who will be performing music from Brundibar, a Czech children’s opera that was performed in an orphanage in Prague in 1941. Additionally, the talk will be preceded by a slideshow of family photos, many of which were preserved by family friends in her hometown. This is a program that can appeal to people of all ages and of all religions. Editor’s note: This event is free to Breman Museum members. For non-members, the event is included in museum admission ($12 adults, $8 seniors age 62 and older, $6 students). Call (678) 222-3700 for more information.

Temple Beth Tikvah Celebrates 25th Anniversary RENOWNED COMPOSER, SINGER AND ACTOR DANNY MASENG TO PERFORM Temple Beth Tikvah, a 500-family Reform Jewish congregation located in Roswell, will mark its 25th anniversary with a weekend celebration in October featuring internationally renowned composer, singer and actor Danny Maseng. “A quarter of a century ago, under the leadership of founding Rabbi Donald Tam, a few families had the idea to create a warm, welcoming and engaging place to worship,” said Rabbi Fred Greene, who has led the synagogue since 2006. “They called it Temple Beth Tikvah – the ‘House of Hope’ – and 25 years later, the congregation has lived up to its name and then some. “This celebration is our opportunity to look back on how much we’ve accomplished together and to look ahead to the opportunities and challenges we face as Jews, congregants and members of the broader community.” The congregation’s 25th anniversary celebration will include a Shabbat service on Oct. 12 at 8 p.m. featuring Maseng and the Temple Beth Tikvah choir. Then, on Oct. 13 at 8 p.m., Maseng will perform a special concert of popular, folk and Jewish music.

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The weekend will conclude on Oct. 14 at 1 p.m. with Relay for Life Ruach Atlanta, the first-ever Sunday Relay for Life event to raise money for the American Cancer Society. The event will take place at the Roswell Area Park. Those who wish to participate can register at ruachga. Editor’s note: To reserve your seat or to learn more about sponsorship opportunities, call Temple Beth Tikvah at (770) 642-0434. The public is invited to the service (no charge) and concert ($36, sponsorships available).



Planting the Seeds for a Better Atlanta GREG LEVINE & TREES ATLANTA


tlanta native Greg Levine’s love of nature grew as he grew, blossoming into a passion for gardening and a small obsession with identifying trees in his youth. Levine’s earliest memory of connecting with trees is one of collecting money for the Jewish National Fund to plant trees in Israel, and that experience – coupled with regular tree plantings in honor of Tu B’shevat – planted the seeds for a lifelong love of trees. Today, Levine is the co-executive director and chief program officer of Trees Atlanta, a 27-year-old nonprofit serving the metro community by planting trees. Levine’s grandparents attended the downtown location of Ahavath Achim Synagogue in the 1920s and ‘30s, and Levine’s parents were married at AA when it moved to Buckhead. Years later, Levine celebrated his bar mitzvah at Congregation Or VeShalom, where he remembers planting a tree himself for the first time.

Upon receiving a degree in landscape architecture from University of Georgia and working at the U.S. National Arboretum, Levine began what is now a 17-year career at Trees Atlanta, where he has furthered the organization’s mission to protect and improve Atlanta’s urban forest through planting, conserving and educating. Since its inception in 1985, Trees Atlanta has planted and distributed more than 88,000 trees in neighborhoods all around metro Atlanta. With the goal of rejuvenating Atlanta’s declining tree canopy, the organization works with volunteers and communities every week to build a healthy, diverse urban forest for citizens to enjoy and benefit from and also honors Tu B’shevat every year with a special planting event. Critical funding for this work comes from donations, memberships and the annual Trees Atlanta tree sale, which takes place this year on Oct. 13 at the Trees Atlanta Kend-

eda Center (225 Chester Avenue, Atlanta) from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Levine personally invites citizens from all neighborhoods to attend the sale. “Every dollar invested at the tree sale will not only buy you a great tree for your yard, [but] it will also enable Trees Atlanta volunteers to plant shade trees in urban areas where they are needed most,” he said. “The annual Sale is an essential part of making these plantings possible, all so Atlanta citizens can enjoy a healthier environment.” The Trees Atlanta Tree Sale gives plant-lovers a chance to talk with experts about why each tree is unique so that making the decision on which tree to buy becomes easier. There will be an extensive selection of oaks, ginkgos, hickories, hollies, dogwoods, redbuds, azaleas, hydrangeas, blueberries and many more species and varieties. First-time tree buyers will enjoy the event as much as tree enthusiasts; in addition to a vast selection of native and exotic trees,

Greg Levine shrubs, and perennials available, the tree sale will also feature a festival, including a sheep petting zoo and local Atlanta food trucks. In supporting the Trees Atlanta tree sale, you can give your kids cherished memories of planting trees, just as Levine had. To learn more about the tree sale, visit

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hen two rabbinical students stepped off the plane and into Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport last month, they may have rolled up their sleeves, but the perfect tan was not on their minds. They came with much optimism, cheer and Jewish pride to help Rabbi Yossi Lerman of Chabad of Gwinnett reach as many of the county’s approximately 12,000 Jews as possible. Rabbi Mendel Greenberg from Los Angeles and Rabbi Mordy Gershon from Chicago are part of a worldwide program sometimes referred to as “the Chabad Summer Peace Corps,” in which some 250 young rabbis and senior rabbinical students visit communities in Bolivia, Bosnia, Cambodia, Croatia, Fiji, Guadeloupe, Ireland, Portugal, Sri Lanka, Uruguay and thousands of other locations worldwide. Never having been in the American South, the young rabbis were not absolutely sure what to expect. What they found was “the perfect combination of Southern and Jewish hospitality.” “We felt very warm and welcome!” Rabbi Greenberg said. Local families – not used to seeing young yeshiva men in traditional garb knocking on their doors on a hot summer’s day – might have been initially surprised, but were

soon – according to Lee Jones of Lawrenceville – “put at ease by their friendly demeanor and general chattiness.” “My wife, daughter, and I enjoyed our conversation them,” Jones said. “We felt really comfortable even though they were strangers to us.” For two weeks, the rabbis canvassed neighborhoods and visited hundreds of families in Gwinnett County and Northeast Georgia, making connections and letting people know that Chabad cares about them. The house-to-house visitations make for a very personal connection. “While classes and communal events go a long way in educating people, it is the conversations we have one-onone that have the greatest impact,” said Rabbi Lerman, the spiritual leader of Chabad of Gwinnett since. The program was conceived of and developed by the Chabad-Lubavitcher Rebbe – Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory – more than 50 years ago and has since then touched literally millions of Jews and bolstered Jewish communities and individuals worldwide. The young rabbis rang bells and knocked on doors, leaving each family a jar of honey as a Rosh HaShanah gift. “They were just there to help spread the joy of being Jewish in home, office, store – wherever it may be,” said Rabbi Lerman. “We know that ‘every family is a unique story.’”


The Kehilla of Sandy Springs

Can a Synagogue be Fun?


SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

an a synagogue be fun? Can it ever foster an environment where Jews from diverse backgrounds and religious affiliations can all feel at home? “No way” you are thinking, “services are boring and Jews stay in their small fractious groups”. Think again. The best kept secret in Atlanta is about to be revealed. There is a synagogue called The Kehilla (which translates ‘The Community’) where people from all walks of life are smiling and laughing together every week, experiencing the beauty and depth of Judaism as individuals while bonding together as an extended family.


Rabbi Ingber at or call 770-651-8509 for more info and visit the young Kehilla FB page to see the exciting classes and events. Please RSVP for high holiday services at The Kehilla 5075 Roswell Rd. Sandy Springs, GA 30342

“How can that be?” Well, we have to start with the Rabbi, because this special approach is an outgrowth of the Rabbi’s unique training and personality. Rabbi Karmi Ingber is a very eclectic rabbinic figure who combines scholarship, mysticism, music, art and most importantly human caring to create this distinct blend. He is a Talmudic scholar who trained in Israel for over 20 years and has recently completed his first book on Kaballa (presently going to publication). He is an accomplished musician, singer/songwriter who has released two CDs of original music, as well as an experienced therapist with an M.A.

in human behavior/counseling with an expertise in interpersonal relationships. Rabbi Ingber is also a world class public speaker in addition to being a skilled Tai Chi aficionado on the side! All these talents merge to create an environment that is warm and welcoming and yet spiritual and energetic; one that inspires people to grow at their own pace and in their own special way. “So what denomination is it?” Rabbi Ingber is an ordained Orthodox Rabbi but his style and approach appeal to people from all backgrounds and the congregation is so diverse that perhaps the synagogue should be dubbed “Post-Denominational” to rid us of all our pre-conceived notions. Yes, there is a Mechitza (separation of men and women) but it isn’t obtrusive or offensive. It is an artistic divider that runs down the middle equally to allow for greater concentration during the service and is removed afterwards when the community eats lunch together, which they do every Shabbat. The Kehilla can be experienced through many different venues, including: exciting classes on a spectrum of spiritual topics, the monthly dinner/learning event called ‘Kaballa and Cocktails’, Shabbat and Holiday experiences and a slew of social get-togethers, including musical festivities and outdoor happenings. There is also a vibrant young adult group called the ‘Young Kehilla’ for ages 21-40 where over 10 couples have met their significant others at social events in only two and a half years of existence. For the High Holidays, The Kehilla wants to enable everyone to experience this most amazing place, and is offering High Holiday tickets for free if you RSVP at the website: Space is limited so please let The

Top: young Kehilla event Bottom: Tu B’Shvat Seder 2012

Kehilla know if you want to attend. Especially appropriate will be the ‘Explanatory Service’ on the mornings of the first day of Rosh Hashana (9/17) and Yom Kippur (9/26) 9:00-11:30am, you may also attend the other Kehilla services; details are at the website. Feel free to contact Rabbi Ingber at or call 770651-8509 for more info and visit the Young Kehilla FB page to see the exciting classes and events. The Kehilla is located at 5075 Roswell Rd. Sandy Springs, 30342



Israeli Pride

GOOD NEWS MADE THIS PAST WEEK • Israeli doctors fixed the ruptured heart of a Russian that his own doctors could not operate on. The staff of Beersheba’s Soroka Medical Center saved the life of a 50-year-old who was flown from Moscow for highly complex surgery to repair a ruptured aorta. A day later, he was disconnected from most devices – except for his iPod, on which he was watching films. • Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria chose to advance good neighborly relations with their Muslim neighbors by distributing candy to Arab shoppers and construction workers and wishing them “Happy Holidays” in Arabic. Their good will made Eid al-Fitr – the holiday that marks the end of Ramadan – pleasant for all in the “Land of Peace.” • It’s a fact - women are one of the most important reasons for Israeli’s biotech success. While most high-tech employees are male, women make up between 60 and 70 percent of the biotechnology workforce. Women also outnumber men in biology and related sciences in higher education in Israel. • The cooler for the chemical analyzer on the Mars Rover was made on Kibbutz Ein Harod. Israel’s Ricor Cryogenic & Vacuum Systems manufactures the K508 Integral Stirling ½-W Micro Cooler; this neat little device is currently optimizing the temperature of NASA’s vital CheMin chemical analyzer on the Red Planet. • Israel’s electric car travelled a world-record 1,172 miles in 24 hours. The “Better Place” car beat the 24-hour distance record of 994.14 miles, which was set last month. The battery was changed every 75.8 miles, taking just over one minute each time (as compared to a conventional five-minute fuel refill). • A record 2 million children started the Israeli school year, including a very special orphan. Moshe Holtzberg miraculously survived the Muslim terror attack on Mumbai’s Chabad Center four years ago. The young man’s Indian nanny rescued him before he was discovered by the attackers. • Israel is the world’s sixth-healthiest country. Israel nearly cracks the top five in the Bloomberg list of the World’s Healthiest Countries. Ranked before the Jewish State, in order, are: Singapore, Italy, Australia, Switzerland and Japan. Bloomberg analyzed average life expectancy, mortality, pollution and other factors. Editor’s note: This list courtesy via Ted Belman.

Tension Between Israeli Arabs & West Bank Palestinians STUDY SHOWS GROWING RIFT Via Joint Media Services A study conducted by researchers at Ben-Gurion University has found that Israeli Arabs and West Bank Palestinians are growing apart socially and have increasingly different interpretations of historical narratives. According to the Jerusalem Post, researchers found that 60 percent of Israeli Arabs surveyed said they would not want their daughter to marry someone from the West Bank, while 41 percent of West Bankers had the same attitude to their daughter marrying an Israeli Arab. Meanwhile, 18 percent of Israeli Arabs said they wouldn’t want to live in the same neighborhood as Palestinians.

“The ’67 people [West Bank Palestinians] look at the same issue, and they say the ’48 Arabs stayed on their land because they gave up and succumbed to the occupation without any resistance,” Sagy said. “Both groups think of themselves as Palestinians, but narratives are different regarding very crucial issues. What it reveals here is that over the past 60 years, this has really become two distinctly different groups.”

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

On the question of loyalty to the land, the researchers “asked [Israeli] Arabs of ’48 about their narrative, which is that they were loyal to their land when they didn’t desert it and stayed,” explained lead researcher Prof. Shifra Sagy.


Atlanta Synagogue Directory

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CHABAD Chabad Intown 928 Ponce De Leon Avenue Atlanta, GA 30306 404.898.0434

Congregation Beth Shalom 5303 Winters Chapel Rd. Atlanta, GA 30360 770.399.5300

Guardians of the Torah P.O. Box 767981 Roswell, GA 30076 770.286.3477

Young Israel of Toco Hills 2074 Lavista Rd. Atlanta, GA 30329 404.315.1417

Temple Emanu-El 1580 Spalding Dr. Atlanta, GA 30350 770.395.1340

Chabad Israel Center 5188 Roswell Rd. Sandy Springs, GA 30324 404.252.9508

Congregation B’nai Torah 700 Mount Vernon Hwy. Atlanta, GA 30328 404.257.0537 Congregation Etz Chaim 1190 Indian Hills Pkwy Marietta, GA 30068 770.973.0137

Reconstructionist Congregation Bet Haverim 2676 Clairmont Rd. Atlanta, GA 30329 404.315.6446

Temple Kehillat Chaim 1145 Green St. Roswell, GA 30075 770.641.8630

Chabad Jewish Center 4255 Wade Green Rd. Suite 120 Kennesaw, GA 30144 678.460.7702

Nediv Lev: the Free Synagogue of Atlanta 3791 Mill Creek Ct. Atlanta, GA 30341 770.335.2311

Chabad of Cobb 4450 Lower Roswell Rd. Marietta, GA 30068 770.565.4412 Chabad of Gwinnett 3855 Holcomb Bridge Rd. Suite 770 Norcross, GA 30092 678.595.0196 Chabad of North Fulton 10180 Jones Bridge Rd. Alpharetta, GA 30022 770.410.9000 Congregation Beth Tefillah 5065 High Point Rd. Atlanta, GA 30342 404.257.9306 Conservative

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Ahavath Achim Synagogue 600 Peachtree Battle Ave. Atlanta, GA 30327 404.355.5222


Congregation Gesher L’Torah 4320 Kimball Bridge Rd. Alpharetta, GA 30022 770.777.4009 Congregation Or Hadash 6751 Roswell Rd. Atlanta, GA 30328 404.250.3338 Congregation Shearith Israel 1180 University Dr. Atlanta, GA 30306 404.873.1743 Non-denominational Atlanta Chevre Minyan Druid Forest Clubhouse North Crossing Dr. Atlanta, GA 30305 Congregation Shema Yisrael 6065 Roswell Rd., #3018 Atlanta, GA 30328 404.943.1100

Orthodox Anshi S’Fard Congregation 1324 North Highland Ave. Atlanta, GA 30306 404.874.4513 Congregation Ariel 5237 Tilly Mill Rd. Dunwoody, GA 30338 770.390.9071 Congregation Beth Jacob 1855 Lavista Rd. Atlanta, GA 30329 404.633.0551 Congregation Beth Yitzhak 5054 Singleton Rd. Norcross, GA 30093 770.931.4567 Email: Congregation Ner Hamizrach 1858 Lavista Rd. Atlanta, GA 30329 404.315.9020 The Kehilla of Sandy Springs 5075 Roswell Rd. Sandy Springs, GA 30342 404.913.6131

Reform Congregation B’nai Israel 1633 Hwy 54 E Jonesboro, GA 30238 678.817.7162 Congregation Dor Tamid 11165 Parsons Rd. Johns Creek, GA 30097 770.623.8860 Congregation Ner Tamid 176 West Sandtown Rd. Marietta, GA 30064 678.264.8575 Congregation Rodeph Sholom 406 East 1st Street Rome, GA 30161 (706) 291-6315 Temple Beth David 1885 Mcgee Rd. Snellville, GA 30078 770.978.3916 Temple Beth Tikvah 9955 Coleman Rd. Roswell, GA 30075 770.642.0434

Temple Kol Emeth 1415 Old Canton Rd. Marietta, GA 30062 770.973.3533 Temple Sinai 5645 Dupree Dr. Sandy Springs, GA 30327 404.252.3073 The Temple 1589 Peachtree St. NE Atlanta, GA 30309 404.873.1731 SEPHARDIC Congregation Or VeShalom 1681 North Druid Hills Rd. Atlanta, GA 30319 404.633.1737 Traditional Congregation Shaarei Shamayim 1810 Briarcliff Rd. Atlanta, GA 30329 404.417.0472



GHA’s AMMA Program Builds Strong Bodies and Strong Brains ZAMZEES AND POINTZ GETTING KIDS FIT AJT Columnist


reenfield Hebrew Academy middle school students are very excited about GHA’s new exercise initiative, the AMMA Challenge. AMMA – which stands for A Million Minutes of Activity – is a collaboration between middle school teachers and students to achieve a collective tally of one million minutes of exercise this school year. After all, not only is increased movement a boon for fitness, but research shows that 40 minutes a day of exercise also increases children’s brain activity and can improve math scores and executive brain function. But how, you may ask, will they keep track of how many minutes of activity they perform each day? The “Zamzees,” kindly donated by GHA alumnus Dr.

Hilliard Gastfriend, are the answer. Zamzees are triaxial accelerometers, which measure intensity and duration of activity (not just steps). Middle schoolers wear the little devices clipped to sneakers, watches or clothing, and the Zamzees monitor their activity. Then, the Zamzees are plugged into USB ports on their computers and the data is uploaded onto the Zamzee site, where students and teachers can see their data and the data of the other participants they “friend.” The website also lets participants take on fitness challenges and earn “Pointz,” which can be spent on clothing and accessories for the adorable wideeyed avatars (which earned a simultaneous and auditorium-shaking “aww…” when the middle schoolers saw them on the presentation screen). Sue Loubser, GHA’s Director of Technology and Media, was the initiator of the AMMA program.

TOP: Fifth-grader Avi Price proudly displays his brand-new Zamzee. ABOVE: Fifth-grade girls Aliza Moosai, Sela Ratner and Aden Dori prepare to give their Zamzees a workout. PHOTOS/Sue Loubser

“At the International Society for Technology in Education conference last year, Dr. John Medina gave the keynote address called ‘Brain Rules for Education,’” Loubser said. “One of the things that he said which stuck with me was that exercise improves executive function in students and can help students increase test scores…and the effects can last into adulthood. “Then, at the Day School conference, I attended a session with [GHA assistant principal and middle school

director] Franeen Sarif and [GHA principal and lower school director] Leah Summers; [in this session] Barry Joseph discussed badging. He whipped a Zamzee from his pocket as an example of a site that was both cool and used badging to recognize milestones, and explained that he and his son were exercising together and that he was being motivated by the meter! “I put two and two together and came up with the project for ‘A Million Minutes of Activity.’ I knew the children would love it.” Loubser’s intuition was correct: Excitement swirled through the halls as students awaited the P.E. class in which Zamzees would be distributed. A teacher asked a cluster of sixthgraders if they had their Zamzees yet.

“Not yet” was the answer.

“But only one more period to go!” they chorused.

By the day all the Zamzees had been distributed, recess was a hopping, running, soccer-playing blur of perpetual motion. “I love my new Zamzee!” Bella Cantor, eighth-grader, enthused. “I’m getting so much exercise now!” “I’ve had my Zamzee clipped to my shoe for two days now,” Fifth-grader Ariel Cann said as he pointed down. “I’m going to reach a whole new level of lickety-split!” Greenfield parents are thrilled too. An enthusiastic mom posting on Facebook remarked: “My son has exercised more in the last two days then he has for the last seven years!” Editor’s note: Leah Levy is a paraprofessional at GHA and the author of “The Waiting Wall,” a Sydney Taylor Notable Book for 2010.


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By Leah Levy



arts & life

It’s a Bird… It’s a Plane… It’s Super Mensch! AUTHOR LARRY TYE EXPLORES THE JEWISH SIDE OF SUPERMAN By Allen Rabinowitz AJT Columnist

I SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

f not for the taunting and bullying young Jerry Siegel received in Depression-era Cleveland, America’s mightiest and longest-lived superhero might never have seen the light of day. To overcome the torture of his daily life, Siegel and fellow outcast Joe Shuster teamed up to create a red-and-blue clad character who embodied all the qualities of bravery, strength, integrity and fairness they wished they’d possessed. The two mocked and powerless sons of Jewish immigrants put all their dreams of a better life into a new kind of hero: Superman.

Now, the story behind the Man of 20 Steel’s true origins as well as the lives

of the artists, actors, filmmakers, publishers, writers and others who have contributed over the past sevenplus decades of the legend of Planet Krypton’s native son have been gathered together by author Larry Tye in “Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero.” Drawing on such untapped resources as Jerry Siegel’s unpublished memoir, Tye produces the most complete biography of the first great comic book superhero. Tye, 57, admits that he was not an avid Superman fan as a youngster. “I read the comic books and watched the TV show,” he said. “So you can say I was generally interested. [But] on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest passion level, I was about a 3.” Nonetheless, Tye admits that there were several reasons to write the book. Previous writing efforts included tomes on such American heroes as Negro League baseball star Satchel Paige and public relations pioneer Edward Bernays.

could fly away. Every night, he went to bed with a pad and pencil and would dream up fantasies that would let him fly away. “At first, he came up with a bad guy whose name was ‘The SuperMan.’ It was Jerry’s – or any little kid’s – way of fighting back. You fight back by being stronger, more powerful and taking over the world.” When Siegel was 17 years old, his father died suddenly of a heart attack during a robbery at his used clothing store. Jerry, the youngest of six kids, was bereft. His new character soon reflected this change. He dropped the ‘the,’ dropped the hyphen and dropped the bad guy act, and suddenly we had Jerry’s real hero, Superman, who in the first story [artist] Joe Shuster ever did of

tive. The relationship worked well because Joe let Jerry call the shots on most things. “He [Joe] was there to fill in the pieces and make Jerry’s images come alive on paper. And it worked well. I think Joe got steamrolled at times, but maybe that’s what he needed – somebody stronger to carry the weight of things and make the decisions. For whatever reason, they were a team that worked together from their teenaged years until their dying days.” Although elements of popular culture such as pulp fiction and movie heroes contributed to the Superman legend, Tye claims the Jewishness of Siegel’s and Shuster’s upbringings in the almost entirely Jewish section of Cleveland’s Glenville played a major role in the development of Superman. “Everywhere they looked, there was something Jewish,” Tye said of the neighborhood. “They were steeped in a Jewish world, and that infused their character.”

“I was really intrigued by why America embraced the hero,” Tye said. “I thought the best way to understand that was to look at the longest-lived hero of the last century. Politicians come and go about every 15 seconds; sports figures last in the limelight maybe a year or two. “Superman has lasted 74 years and counting…I thought looking at him would tell us a lot about him, but more importantly, a lot about us.”

Larry Tye

In the process of researching the book, Tye stumbled upon Siegel’s 100-page unpublished memoir, and the manuscript gave him insight into Siegel’s troubled coming of age. Superman’s origin lies in writer Jerry Siegel’s uneasy youth.

him was rescuing a man – who might have been Mitchell Siegel – who was being robbed,” Tye said. “The hero the world got was a little kid’s notion of what a hero ought to look like.”

“Jerry Siegel was we’d call in today’s terms a ‘bullied kid,’” the author explained. “Every day, when he went out on the playground, kids would taunt him, especially when the girls were watching. He wished he

“Some people might say writers and journalists are by definition hard-edged tough guys,” Tye said. “[And some might say] that artists like Joe are quieter and more sensi-

It took an unusual partnership to bring the Man of Steel to life.


Tye claims there are hints of Superman’s Jewishness from the very beginning of the saga. Superman’s journey from the dying Krypton to his discovery by a Kansas couple mirrors the story of Moses; and “Kal-El,” his name on Krypton, translates roughly from Hebrew into “vessel” or “voice of

The planet Krypton blowing up, Tye says, represented Eastern Europe – where Siegel’s relatives were – being ravaged by World War II and the Holocaust. Tye states that it’s easy to find obvious references from the Bible, Mishnah and Jewish folklore throughout the Superman story. He discovered that the proclamation that Superman’s standards of “truth, justice and

arts & life

the American way,” could be found in a quote from the Mishnah which reads: “The world endures on three things: justice, truth and peace.” As much as Samson served as an obvious Jewish inspiration for Superman, the Eastern European myth of the Golem – a creature made of clay by great rabbis – was an equal influence. “The Golem was to show up when times for Jews were at their worst,” explained Tye. “What better parallel to Superman? When the world needed a hero – when the Jews needed a hero – Superman, like the Golem, would show up on the scene. “Each story of the Golem envisioned him differently, and he kept changing. Really good myths preserve their central element and change around the edges.” As with the Golem, Superman also changed over the course of time, adding and losing superpowers and displaying different attitudes according to the temper of the times. “He started out as a New Deal liberal, chasing down slum lords and wife beaters in the 1930s – when that was what America needed,” Tye said. “In the ‘40s, we needed someone to inspire us as we went to war. [And] in the 1950s, Superman zeroed in on the Red Menace. In every era, he changed in a way that gave us a hero deemed right for that era and served as a Rorschach test for what Americans were thinking about in that era. “Yet the most critical thing about him never changed, and that’s the key to his success: He basically stayed true to truth, justice and the American way. Superman never had to hesitate between knowing right from wrong. And as clunky as that sounds, it’s familiar, and it’s reassuring to us in a time like the 1930s [as well as] in a time like today, when we have similar worries about the economy and our place in the world.” A Massachusetts native, Tye runs the Boston-based Health Coverage Fellowship, an organization which aids the media in better covering critical healthcare issues. After graduating from Brown University, Tye worked as a journalist for the Ala-

bama paper Anniston Star and the Courier-Journal in Louisville, Ky. He then returned to the Bay State in 1986 as a reporter for the Boston Globe, where he covered a number of beats. While covering stories worldwide, he came upon numerous Jewish communities and made a deal with his editors that as long as he completed his assignment, he could write a story on the Jewish community in that particular city. His observations of postHolocaust Jewish life in the Diaspora led to his book “Home Lands: Portraits of the New Jewish Diaspora,” which looked at the Jewish communities in such cities as Boston, Buenos Aires, Dnepropetrovsk (Ukraine), Dublin, Dusseldorf (Germany), Paris and Atlanta. While here, he met the community through the rabbis of Ahavath Achim and The Temple as well as the Eplan family. “I saw a million stories about ‘Woe are we in the Diaspora,’” he said. “I didn’t think that was reflective of the Jewish world everywhere I went. I came away with the conclusion that not only was the Jewish Diaspora doing well, it was doing well brilliantly.” One of the major themes Tye explores in “Superman: The HighFlying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero” is the duality between Superman and his alter ego, Clark Kent.

“It’s a different kind of duality than that you find in most other superheroes,” said Tye. “Batman was a disguise; the real character was Bruce Wayne. Spiderman was a disguise; the real character is Peter Parker.

The mild-mannered reporter was in many ways the gentile side of Superman. “We [Jews] were in a diaspora and had to blend in, so we were all looking for our assimilated side as well and trying to understand the proper balance,” Tye explained. “In Superman, that balance was between two different characters; if there was anybody who was a gentile, it was Clark Kent.” Referring back to Siegel’s unpublished memoir, Tye says Siegel made clear that when he looked in the mirror, he didn’t see the Clark Kent-like shlubby character who was a little too short, a little too round and stuck behind thick spectacles. “There was a Superman in him, and in all of us,” Tye said. “That to me was an important lesson for every little kid in that era – and probably in every era. There are little Jewish kids believing a lot of the weakling myths our enemies were throwing at us. “I think the idea that we all had Superman – who had something explicitly Jewish about him – within us was a wonderful thing for Jewish kids growing up then.”

With Superman, he is the real character and the disguise is Clark Kent. “What that means is that Superman was never hiding from anything. He was out there with no mask, letting people see who he was; the only hiding that was going on is when he changed into Clark Kent, which was what I think was his attempt to find out what it was like to be human. “He was living as an alien among humans, and he wanted to understand us better. It let him let down his defenses and relax a bit, and it also allowed him to explore his own humanity.”

With a laugh, Tye explains “the real reason” he wrote the book: “I wanted to be 10 years old again. The last two years working on this look made me feel that way. And I hope that people who read the book will get a sense of whimsy and fondly remember what they felt like at 10 years old again. And, ideally without knowing it, they would get a sense of what popular culture and American values were all about because Superman says a whole lot to me about both of those.”

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012




ArtS & life



lfred Uhry is considered one of the greatest Southern playwrights and screenwriters of all time. His ability to create intricate, dynamic stories about his Southern Jewish heritage and to use his stories as fodder so that audiences can feast upon every word and gesture has earned him the rare distinction of being the only writer to win a Pulitzer Prize, an Academy Award and two Tony Awards. Ironically, though, it took Uhry moving to New York to evolve into the kind of writer who has permanently weaved his Southern Jewish heritage into the hearts and minds of audiences all over the world. Uhry’s writing career did not initially begin with his Jewish heritage at the forefront; he originally had dreams of becoming a great lyricist. To further this goal, he moved to New York in the late 1950s and was hired to write lyrics for the late composer Frank Loesser (“Guys and Dolls”). However, after dabbling in turning old musicals into workable scripts at the Goodspeed Theater, it didn’t take long for Uhry to discover that his destiny was in criptwriting, not the composing business. It also didn’t take long for Uhry to heed the advice he received in a drama class to always write about what was familiar. But, Uhry was still hesitant. “I was trying to blend in during my early writing career in New York,” he said. “I downplayed my Jewish heritage when I was younger – to my detriment.”

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

Also, according to Uhry, to be Southern was still an oddity in New York during those times. Southerners were still seen as backwards, while Northerners were progressive, and Southerners were uncultured, while Northerners were cultured. The Breakthrough: “Driving Miss Daisy” When Uhry made the decision to tell the story of his German-Jewish grandmother Lena Fox and her AfricanAmerican chauffeur Will Coleman, the story of “Driving Miss Daisy” emerged.

In 1987, the play was a smash hit 22 off Broadway and eventually a smash

hit on Broadway; the work was turned into a movie in 1989. For this first in his “Atlanta Trilogy” of plays, Uhry won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama and an Academy Award for Driving Miss Daisy. “I was happy and surprised because I did not think that anybody, except maybe Southerners, would be interested in the story,” Uhry said. He had unknowingly changed the theater world overnight. Before “Driving Miss Daisy,” there were no plays on Broadway that portrayed Jewish and African-American Southerners as complex, deeply motivated characters. The characters of Hoke and Mrs. Werthan were not caricatures of the South; they both exemplified the type of codependent relationships that existed between some African-Americans and Jews during segregation. Hoke and Mrs. Werthan had to both face social issues in different ways, but they recognized that the goodness they saw in each other transcended the way the outside world viewed them. Building Success


within the Atlanta Jewish community: the Leo Frank Case. Uhry’s great-grand-uncle owned the pencil warehouse where Leo Frank worked, and his grandmother was good friends with Lucille Frank. “When I was growing up, Leo Frank was almost a forbidden topic,” Uhry said. “It was such a bad, scary time for Jews during that time.” He wrote “Parade” about the Frank trial, and in 1999, the musical won the Tony Award for Best Book and Best Score. The trilogy, now completed, helped him come full-circle in terms of appreciating the uniqueness of his heritage. Meanwhile, the characters, the words and the sincerity of Uhry’s plays have helped audiences across the United States and around the world to not only understand the beauty and sometimes rawness of Southern Jewish life but also the complexities of the South. Uhry believes that his success as a writer is mainly due to the fact that he just tells the truth.

Still reeling from his first big success, Uhry “Over the nonetheless did Alfred Uhry years, my connot waste any viction that autime getting startdiences respond to the truth whether ed on his next play, and thus began they realize it or not just strengthens,” to explore all of the great memories he said. and traditions of his youth in Atlanta. Uhry’s family, like many German-Jew- ish families, became very prosperous The Playwright Today in the business world and helped build the city of Atlanta through industry Uhry has written many other stellar plays: In 2002, the play “Edgardo and trade. Mine” premiered at the Hartford Stage; In 1997, Uhry completed writing in 2006, the play “Without Walls” pre“The Last Night of Ballyhoo,” a play miered at the Mark Taper Forum; and based on a prosperous German-Jewish in 2006, “LoveMusik” premiered at the family’s excitement and anxiety about Manhattan Theatre Club. Still, he rethe Ballyhoo, an important social event mains modest about his achievements. in the Atlanta Jewish community from the 1930s into the ‘50s. For this work, He is just happy and humbled that he won a Tony Award, and a second people enjoy his work. Despite his busy major success emboldened him to tack- schedule, he always takes the time to le one of the most controversial issues give back to his community by teach-

ing master drama classes and also served as the board president of Young Playwrights Incorporated, a non-profit organization that mentors young playwrights. Uhry tells aspiring writers that no matter where they live or where they come from, they can never go wrong if they stay true to themselves and always write the truth. Druid Hills High School – from which Uhry graduated – named its theater Uhry Theater. Uhry’s model of the truth has made him one of the most sought-after playwrights, and he is inundated with requests to do commissions. Currently, Uhry is currently working on “Apples and Oranges,” which debuts at ‘the Alliance Theatre on Oct. 5 Lynne Meadow, famed artistic director of the Manhattan Theatre Club, commissioned Uhry to write the play based on Vanity Fair Magazine’s editor-atlarge Marie Brenner’s memoir of the same name. Uhry has been working on the play, which Meadow will direct, on-and-off since 2009. The story centers on two siblings, a brother and sister, who are very different: The sister is a liberal editor working in NYC, while the brother is a conservative apple picker in Washington State. When a crisis hits the family, they are able to look past their differences and be there for each other. Uhry answered a few questions about the play: Tiffany Parks: What drew you to Marie Brenner’s memoir, and did you know her before you read her memoir? Alfred Uhry: I did not know Mrs. Brenner, but when I read her memoir, I was immediately attracted to it because it was about one brother and one sister. I have just one sister. It [the one brother-one sister bond] is essentially a different relationship because one brother and one sister don’t have other siblings to rely on and those are interesting dynamics. TP: What are some of the themes of the play? AU: One of the themes is sibling rivalry, but it’s also how siblings should relate to each other. When push comes to shove, if it’s a healthy relationship, Continued on next page



Kosher Movies: The Boxer (1997) Continued on previous page


then completely opposite siblings will help each other.

By Rabbi Herbert Cohen

AU: Love and family transgress politics. TP: Is there a character in the play that you relate to? AU: I relate to both characters. It’s a two-character play. It’s written from the sister’s point of view. It’s a memoir. TP: How does the director keep the momentum or action in the play? AU: The staging is great. The momentum is great. The lighting is impressive. The director does a fantastic job getting the characters to relate to each other. TP: Have you worked with Lynne Meadow before? AU: Yes, she is a very important New York director, and she runs one of the best theaters in New York called the Manhattan Theater Club, and the fact that she wants to come to Atlanta and do this is a big deal. TP: What do you think the audience will learn from the play? AU: Basically, I hope that the audience is involved in the characters and that the audience is entertained. I want everyone to enjoy the play. TP: What kind of writer are you? AU: I like to take my time. I like to get to know the characters and to really develop them. I started writing the play in 2009. I like thinking about what I write. TP: Will this play be turned into a movie? AU: Maybe, I don’t know. I didn’t think “Driving Miss Daisy” would turn into a movie, so who knows? TP: Is there a surprise ending? AU: Yes, four hippos run across the stage. Ha!

AJT Columnist


any, many years ago, when I was in junior high school, I met Dolly, a sweet and very personable girl with whom I enjoyed spending time. She went to a different school, so one day I invited her to visit my school, an institution in which I took great pride.

Against this background, Danny meets with Maggie, his old flame. They originally intended to marry, but life intervened: Danny went to

Those were innocent years, and nothing seemed nefarious about my asking a girl that I knew to tour my school. And in truth, the tour was excellent except for one small problem: A school janitor saw me in the building after hours with her and reported me to the principal to make him aware of my inappropriate behavior.

A paramount value amongst the IRA is that wives remain loyal to their husbands, even when they are sent to prison for long terms. The IRA fighters view with disdain the

In truth, nothing immoral occurs between them. They confess their mutual love but do not consummate it any way, respecting the unwritten code of the IRA. However, the specter of adultery looms large, and eventually it becomes the excuse for Danny’s enemies to torpedo Danny’s plans to live in peace and open a nonsectarian boxing club in which both Catholics and Protestants can participate. Violence erupts, leaving innocents murdered and maimed. The future of peace between the Irish and English is jeopardized. Moreover, the suggestion of inappropriate behavior between Danny and Maggie motivates Maggie’s son Liam to burn down the town gymnasium where the boxers train. Judaism has much to say about marit ayin, the appearance of impropriety. For example, the Torah tells us that if a woman is alone with a man other than her husband, the appearance of impropriety might trigger a crisis of trust between spouses, which might lead to the dissolution of the marriage.

The visit was innocent, but the next day I was summoned to the principal’s office, where he lectured me about the appearance of impropriety. It was a speech that had a lasting impact, and today I am grateful for it; I learned early on to be sensitive to how my actions might appear to others. The appearance of impropriety is the catalyst for much of what happens in “The Boxer,” the story of Danny Flynn, a former Irish prizefighter. He comes home to Belfast after serving 14 years in prison and there reconnects with Maggie, an old girlfriend now married to an imprisoned IRA man.

encounters, nothing can remain the same.

prison as a convicted terrorist, and Maggie reluctantly moved on, eventually marrying and having a child. But in spite of the long separation, their love for one another persists. Seeing each other after so many years rekindles long-suppressed feelings, and they reveal their innermost thoughts to one another. Their private talks, however, soon become public knowledge, and their destinies are changed. Once others become aware of their surreptitious

The appearance of impropriety plays out in many life situations. Judaism encourages us to be sensitive to how our behavior looks to others. We may technically be innocent of crime, but our actions may give a different impression. It is wise at times to see our behavior through the eyes of others. Editor’s note: Rabbi Cohen, former principal of Yeshiva Atlanta, now resides in Beit Shemesh, Israel.

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

TP: Does the play have a broader political message?

slightest impropriety. They know that if an IRA member were to feel that incarceration would lead to the breakup of his marriage as well as prison, it would become increasingly difficult to recruit members; for many it would be too high a price to pay for their rebellion against the English.



let it be read

A Look Inside the White House “THE OBAMAS” AUTHOR KANTOR COMING TO JCC SEPT. 12 By Elizabeth Friedly Assistant Editor


s if becoming the youngest person on record to edit a section of The New York Times weren’t enough proof of her ambition, author Jodi Kantor

takes on none other than the first couple themselves as the subject of her debut book “The Obamas.” On Sept. 12 at 7:30 p.m., Kantor makes a visit to the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta in a Page from the Book Festival event. Synagogue member and granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor,

Kantor keeps close ties to her Jewish roots. She has spoken at numerous community centers and synagogues since “The Obamas” came out in January. After graduating from Columbia University, Jodi Kantor Kantor spent in a year in Israel as a part of the highly competitive Dorot Fellowship program, where she studied Hebrew and volunteered with organizations aimed at Israeli and Palestinian peace. Kantor later covered political journalism for the Times, following Obama’s bid for the presidency in 2008 and onward. When asked what inspired her to pen the book, she responds, “Watching them change.” Michelle and Barack Obama’s evolution from outsiders who critiqued the system to America’s first couple sparked this author’s interest in “the story behind the story” of their time in the White House.






SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012










“There was so much that surprised me,” Kantor said. “For instance, Michelle Obama considered not moving to Washington immediately. She considered staying in Chicago with her daughters. ” A wife and mother herself, Kantor sympathies with the intricate difficulties inherent in raising a family. Her book speaks to the Obamas’ adjustment in dealing with public scrutiny and their now non-existent private lives. “I know how complicated the logistics of a regular family with working parents is, but the challenges that they face are so much more profound,” Kantor said. Dinner Reservations Suggested

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In gathering information for the book, a process Kantor describes as “very intensive,” she spoke to 33 current and former White House aides in addition to numerous past interviews with Mr. and Mrs. Obama. Her book offers intimate looks inside the machine that is the presidency.

In particular, she reveals the extent of Michelle Obama’s involvement in her husband’s administration. Kantor’s in-depth look at the Obamas’ marriage spans staffer meetings to private debates between husband and wife on morals and policy-making. “It was a real voyage of discovery,” said Kantor, who counts the overall experience as a positive one. Her nuanced reporting on the President and first lady bestows on readers a glimpse into the often obscured, everyday flesh and blood behind politics. Editor’s note: Visit or call the MJCCA Box Office at (678) 812-4002 for ticketing information.


food for thought

Soup for Any Season A TALE OF TWO SOUPS, PART II By Suzi Brozman AJT Columnist


ast week, I promised you another soup from my Jerusalem sojourn. Here’s the backstory for this one:

A friend called to say that her family was in Israel and that they all had that night free and could come to dinner. Of course, I answered immediately, never thinking about the fact that it was late in the afternoon and my cupboard was – to put it mildly – basically bare except for the chicken I’d bought for Shabbat. So what

I gathered there

easily off the potato and apples. With my sparsely equipped kitchen, I mashed everything with a fork (I’d strongly suggest you use a food processor, or at least a potato masher – things I got along without for one year, but rejoice now that I’ve got access to my stuff again). I served the soup hot the first night, then cold on Shabbat. There wasn’t time for fancy garnishing, but apple slices and a drizzle of honey would make this soup a perfect starter for Rosh Hashanah. I also think I’d forego the cream of coconut and use soy or almond milk, or – if you’re serving a dairy meal – real milk.

tossed-together soup was the highlight of the evening. Also, it taught me a lesson: Make use of whatever’s there.

it, it will remind me of friends and fun in the Holy Land. I hope your New Year is as wonderful as my old year was, and as we say on Pesach…

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The meal was great, but the


s Fe

At that point, the skins slipped


New Northside Drive NW

I had washed the vegetables, but left the peels on. They cooked for about one-and-a-half hours; then I drained them, put them back in the pot and covered it with a towel to let them steam for about five minutes.

I thought I had made enough of everything for two nights, but I was wrong. I forgot to count on teenagers eating everything but the pattern on the plate, so there was not a drop of soup left and barely enough of the rest.


Never one to let well enough alone, I added a little cream of coconut (couldn’t find almond milk or coconut milk), and it was too sweet, so I added hot paprika…wow!

So for this meal, it was the soup as well as chicken baked with fresh and dried fruits and wine and topped with orange slices; bulghar wheat pilaf with toasted sesame seeds and roasted sliced almonds; sautéed fresh vegetables; fresh bread (not homemade, as it hurts my wrists to knead); wine; huge strawberries; pareve ice cream; cookies and chocolate dip.


was and set about improvising. There were carrots, apples, parsnips and potato – so I just chunked them and put them into water to boil, then added cinnamon, ginger (just a touch) and salt.




This Week’s Highlighted Events




Fri., Sept. 7 Shabbat Potlock on the Playground, a fun evening of singing, eating, and relaxing while your children play on the Paradies Playground. Families are asked to bring dairy or vegetarian food to share with others. Fri., Sept. 7, 5:00 p.m. Zaban Park, Dunwoody GA. For more information, Shabbat at Chastain, Shabbat service and dinner at Chastain Park and Club Chastain. Additional Train concert afterwards. Fri., Sept. 7, 6:00 p.m. Chastain Park, Atlanta GA. Wine Tasting Class, hosted by North Atlanta Jewish Singles, a private wine tasting class and chance to socialize. Fri., Sept. 7, 7:00 p.m. $22/ person. The Wine Shoe. RSVP to Mark Horvath




Sat., Sept. 8 Selichot, a contemporary/traditional musical setting of the Selichot Service followed by a mini Oneg. Sat., 8, 7:30 p.m. Congregation Dor Tamid, Johns Creek GA. (770) 623-8860.




Sun., Sept. 9 Camp Sunday, program for children (grades Pre-K to second grade) to learn Jewish values, customs and traditions. Sun., Sept. 9, 9:45 a.m. MJCCA’s Camp Isidore Alterman. (678) 812- 3881. Training Wheels Atlanta, come learn about Rosh Hashanah at this Jewish family education program created by Hadassah that lets parents and children ages 3 to 5 become partners in discovering the joys of being Jewish. Sun., Sept. 9, 10 a.m.

Family Pool Party and Cookout, hosted by North Atlanta Jewish Singles, come join for an afternoon of water, fun and food. Bring a side, drink or dessert to share. Sun., Sept. 9, 11:30 a.m. $5/ person. Private residence. RSVP to Mark Horvath Etz Aviv’s Meet and Greet Lunch, hosted by Etz Aviv Hadassah, come join for lunch, socializing and making cards for the New Year. Sun., Sept. 9, 12:30 p.m. $10/person. Private residence. (678) 401- 5669. Bearing Witness: Ilse Reiner, dedicated to the children of Theresienstadt, survivor Ilse Reiner will share her experience and sign her book, “Through the Eyes of a Child: Diary of an Eleven Year Old Jewish Girl.” Sun., Sept. 9, 2:00 p.m. Free for members or $12/ person. The Breman Museum. (678)222- 3700. SAT Test Prep, for ages 15 and up. Sun., Sept. 9, 1:00 p.m. MJCCA- Zaban Park. (678) 812-4078.




Mon., Sept. 10 “Holocaust Survivor Cookbook” Author Event, Joanne Caras will speak about her experience in creating “Miracles and Meals.” Mon., Sept. 10, 7 p.m. $15/person. Chabad Intown, Atlanta GA. RSVP (404) 898-0434.

Music and Lyrics by Sherman Edwards Book by Peter Stone

Based on a Concept by Sherman Edwards Original Production Directed by Peter Hunt Original Broadway Production Produced by Stuart Ostrow

Rock, RATL and Roll, a benefit concert to help purchase wheelchairs for Paralyzed Veterans of America. Mon., Sept. 10, 8:30 p.m. $11/person. Steve’s Live Music, Sandy Springs GA. (404) 4186777.




Presented through arrangement with Music Theater International

Directed by Sandra Ellenburg-Dorsey

America’s Tony Award Winning Musical SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012



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Sept 14-Oct 7

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Tues., Sept. 11 “The Good Old Days......They’re Still Here”, entertainment with Shirley Brickman for Mt. Scopus GAH opening meeting. Tues., Sept. 11, 7:15 p.m. Avis G. Williams Library, Decatur GA. RSVP to or (404) 636-8582, by Sept. 5.




Wed., Sept. 12 Ketura Group Opening Meeting, Hadassah members and guests are cordially invited to hear Dov Wilker, Direc-

tor, American Jewish Committee, Atlanta Regional Office, speak about “The Wonders of Modern Israel.” Wed., Sept. 12, 7 p.m. $10/person. The Carlton in Sandy Springs. RSVP to ebfrank619@gmail. com or “The Obamas” book talk, join New York Times bestselling author Jodi Kantor for a discussion about her new book. Wed., Sept. 12, 7:30 p.m. $15/person. MJCCA’s Zaban Park. (678) 812-4005. Fri., Sept. 14 Challah & Vodka, a special Shabbat celebration. Fri., Sept. 14, 6 p.m. $15/ person. City Club of Buckhead. RSVP at Mon., Sept. 17 High Holiday Services at Chabad of Cobb, a lively and welcoming traditional service with contemporary messages. Mon., Sept. 17 and Tues., Sept 18. Shachrit at 9:30 a.m., Shofar Blowing at 11:45 a.m. and Mincha and Tashlich at 7 p.m. for both the first and second day of Rosh Hashana. Free admission on first come basis. Babysitting and children’s services available. Chabad of Cobb. (770) 565-4412. Wed., Sept. 19 Sophie Hirsh Srochi Discovery Center Drop-In, spend time with other moms for play time in the MJCCA’s Sophie Hirsh Srochi Discovery Center. Wed., Sept. 19, 9:30 a.m. Free. For more information, or (678) 812-4160. Sat., Sept. 22 Horseback Riding, hosted by North Atlanta Jewish Singles, come out for socializing and an hour long trail ride. Sat., Sept. 22, 11 a.m. $30/ person. Chattahooche Stables. RSVP to Mark Horvath Sun., Sept. 23 Bush Centre for Ballet Performance, come see their dance performance at the Sandy Springs Festival and stop by their booth to meet teachers and students and sign up for a free class. Sun., Sept. 23, 12:30 p.m. Sandy Springs Festival Mainstage. (404) 256- 5542. Safe Sitter, two 4-hour classes, training offers teens the opportunity to learn the skills that every parent looks for in a babysitter. Ages 11-15. Sun., Sept. 23, 1:00 p.m. Congregation Etz Chaim. Recipes & Ruach, opening meeting of What’s Cooking With CBS Sisterhood. Bring a holiday dish and copies of your recipe. Sun., Sept. 23, 2:00 p.m. Private Residence. Contact (404) 310-4073

Parshat Ki Tavo MOMENTS THAT TRANSPORT US By Rabbi Laurence Rosenthal Ahavath Achim Synagogue and the Atlanta Rabbinical Association


e took our USY-ers to hear and experience the music of Matisyahu, and it was awesome.

The scene was really something – stuffy packed room, walls dirty with graffiti – I hadn’t been to a venue like that in years. We arrived during the second act, a loud rock band called the Dirty Heads. As with most bands, the lead singer also acted as emcee by engaging the audience, announcing the song titles and throwing in a few colorful words for emphasis. But when Matisyahu finally took the stage, the experience was completely different. I came to the evening as a novice; I don’t own a single Matisyahu album. I knew the hype surrounding his transformation from a bearded, kippah-wearing Jew to a clean-cut, bare-headed 30-something. His performance was in a different universe from the opening act – not because he has better musicians or is a more seasoned performer. Rather, the experience was defined by what he didn’t say. He greeted the crowd with a quiet “Hello, Atlanta,” before launching into song, then spoke nothing else; the rest of his communication with the audience was through song and movement. He focused on creating an atmosphere, an air entirely different from the venue. And it worked. I was transported somewhere else, only reminded of my surroundings when bumped into or by kicking the cans littered on the floor. For two hours, I was somewhere else entirely. Thank goodness this type of experience is not reserved for music concerts but can also be found in our spiritual life as well. In this week’s parsha portion – Ki Tavo – we read about the Bikorim, the first fruits, and we are commanded to bring the best of our bounty to Jerusalem. This ritual stands out because unlike other sacrifices, which are almost entirely performed by the Priest, this offering provided a lead role for the gift-giver.

Most familiar are the words recited after the fruit is placed before the altar. We are prompted to say, “My father was a wandering Aramean…,” as reminiscent of our Passover Seder. Preceding this declaration, the first fruits are placed in a basket, the pilgrim recites an acknowledgement of G-d’s promise and then hands the basket to the priest. The Priest takes the basket and places it before the altar. Immediately following these directions – which place the pilgrim and Priest in front of the altar – the Torah states, “You shall then recite as follows before the Lord your G-d” (Deuteronomy 26:5). So first the Priest and the Israelite were standing before the altar, but now they are standing “before the Lord, your G-d” – what happened to the altar? It was just there a second ago! But now we are standing before G-d, alone. Rashi, the 11th-century commentator, adds another layer to this narrative. He explains that before taking the basket, the priest waves underneath the Israelite’s hand, and after this quick wave, the altar is gone, the basket is nowhere to be found and all that remains is G-d. The Israelite stands face to face with the Almighty, and all it took was the wave of a priest’s hand.

HIGH HOLY DAYS 2012/5773 Rabbi Steven J. Lebow Rabbi Erin C. Boxt Blake Singer, Cantorial Soloist

EREV ROSH HASHANAH Sunday, September 16, 2012 at 8:00 PM ROSH HASHANAH - 1st DAY Monday, September 17, 2012


Service Tot Service (under age 5) Family Service (children 5-10) Tashlich at East Cobb Park Service Service

ROSH HASHANAH - 2nd DAY Tuesday, September 18, 2012 KOL NIDRE Tuesday, September 25, 2012 YOM KIPPUR Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Service Service Adult Study Session (Chapel) Tot Service (under age 5) Family Service (children 5-10) Afternoon Service Yizkor Neilah

9:00 AM

12:30 PM 3:00 PM 4:00 PM 5:00 PM

10:30 AM 8:00 PM 9:00 AM 12:30 PM 2:45-4:15 PM 3:00 PM 3:45 PM 4:30 PM 5:30 PM 6:15 PM

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Now, lest you think this was some sort of a magic trick, let me assure you it wasn’t. Rather, we are reminded that sometimes the way to G-d is not only what we say but also about what isn’t said. The path to G-d is often found in the silence and the small gestures; the path is in those moments and actions we might not even think about mentioning. However, we best keep our eyes open or else we will miss our opportunity. Shabbat Shalom and Shana Tova! Editor’s note: Rabbi Laurence Rosenthal is the assistant rabbi at Ahavath Achim Synagogue and a member of the Atlanta Rabbinical Association.

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Ted Aspes

66, OF ATLANTA Ted Aspes, 66, died at home in Atlanta on Wed., Aug. 29 after a valiant fight against brain cancer. He was surrounded by his adoring family: wife Judy, his love of 43 years; son Adam and wife Wendi of Atlanta; and son Jason of Singapore. Ted grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y., the son of the late Minnie and Abraham Aspes. He earned both his B.A. and D.D.S. degrees at the State University of New York at Buffalo, and it was there that he met Judy. Following dental school, he served as a Captain in the Air Force at Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, Ga. He did a residency in Pediatric Dentistry at the Medical College of Georgia School of Dentistry in Augusta. In 1975 he moved to Atlanta and established his practice in Smyrna, where he worked for over 33 years. Though best known for Julia Roberts’ smile, he treated many thousands of patients during his career and was honored to be treating the children of many of his former patients. His manner was calm, kind and assuring, and he made sure that going to his office was always fun. He handcrafted one-of-a-kind wooden marble mazes that enthralled his patients as well as their parents. Though Ted was a sports fan, he always preferred playing to watching. He played tennis, golf, softball, water volleyball and ran 20-plus consecutive Peachtree Road Races. Ted never forgot his workingclass Brooklyn roots and took pride in caring for his yard and tinkering until he found (sometimes unorthodox) ways to solve a problem. He believed in hard work and a positive attitude, and that was never more apparent than throughout his illness. Through many complications and difficulties he persevered, maintained hope and always had a smile on his face. Of all his many accomplishments, he was most proud of his family. They watched in awe as his optimistic attitude prevailed for almost four years. In addition to Judy, Adam, Wendi and Jason, he is survived by his sister, Lila Holdridge of California; Jason’s wife, Susie, and grandsons Asher, Levi and Shai of Singapore; and grandson Hudson and granddaughter Maya of Atlanta. They were the sunshine in his life. The body was cremated and a memorial service was held at Temple Sinai on Fri., Aug. 31st at 2:30 p.m. The family requests that donations in Ted’s memory be made to The Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke, c/o Ellen Stainback, DUMC Box 3624, Durham, NC 27710. Sign on-line guestbook: Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.

Dorothy Axelrod

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012



Dorothy Rich Bredosky Axelrod, born on Dec. 9, 1918, passed away on Thurs., Aug. 30, 2012. A native Atlantan, she is predeceased by husbands, Nat Bredosky and Harry Axelrod, and siblings, Sidney, Maurice, Lillian and Bill Rich. She is survived by her brother Joe Rich (Winnie); sister Faye Alpert; brother-in-law Bob Diskin; sister-in-law Shirley Rich; and numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and great- great-nieces and greatgreat-nephews. She is also survived by her step-daughter, Lois Gilich, stepgrandchildren and step-great-grandchildren as well as her devoted caregiver, Valeriy Balyuta. Dorothy graduated from Commercial High and worked for many years in accounting and bookkeeping. She was active in various volunteer organizations including Jewish War Veterans, V.A. Hospital, Ahava and the gift shops at the Jewish Home and Ahavath Achim Synagogue. Sign online guest book at Graveside services were held at Greenwood Cemetery on Aug. 31 and officiated by Rabbi Neil Sandler. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Ahavath Achim Synagogue, 600 Peachtree Battle Ave. Atlanta, GA 30327 or to the charity of your choice. Arrangements by Dressler’s Funeral Care.

Louise Beck OF ATLANTA

Louise Beck of Atlanta passed away peacefully on Aug. 14, 2012. She is survived by Herman, her husband of 65 years. Louise was a devoted wife and

mother who taught her children the meaning of love and family and always put others first. She never met a stranger and saw the best in everyone. In addition to her husband, Louise is survived by her sons Daryl (Susan) and Bruce (Veronica); and grandchildren Scott, Allison, Brian and Matthew. She also leaves her sister, Margaret Shainker, and brother, Dr. Gerald Prosterman. She had 13 nieces and nephews. Louise was preceded in death by her sons Stuart and Randy and her sister Sadele Gottler. Please sign online guestbook at In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Randy and Stuart Beck Fund for Respite Care at the Marcus JCC, Congregation Beth Jacob or the charity of one’s choice. Graveside services were held Aug. 16 at 11 a.m. at Crest Lawn Memorial Park with Rabbi Ilan Feldman officiating. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.

Scott Holtz

55, OF ATLANTA Scott Robert Holtz of Atlanta died peacefully on Sat., Aug. 25 surrounded and held by his loving family. He was born on June 19, 1957 and was a proud Atlantan his entire life. Scott was preceded in death by his “fantastic” parents, Bebe and Bill Holtz; and sister, Cathy Jill Holtz. He is survived by his loving wife of 32 years, Ann, to whom he was absolutely devoted. He worshipped his two wonderful daughters, by whom he is also survived: Stephanie (fiancé Chris Whelan), and Melissa Holtz. Other survivors include mother-in-law, Victoria Schauer; siblings: Louis (Alicia) Holtz, Mark (Robin) Holtz, Jenice (Kevin) Cunningham, Mindy (David) Rabinowitz; nieces: Bari Holtz (and great-nephew Jake Hicks), Maury Bernstein, Tova Rosenberg and Avi Gelfond; and many other aunts, uncles and cousins. Scott also leaves behind his faithful pet companions Ellie, Libby and Escada. He was a fabulous cook and loved to be in the kitchen with his family. His Thanksgiving dinners were legendary and his hospitality was always exceptional but he would never share his ribs recipe. Scott was a dedicated husband, son, father, brother, uncle and great friend. Graveside services were held Mon., Aug. 27 at 10:30 a.m. at Crest Lawn Cemetery. Please join us in honoring and celebrating his life as only he would appreciate it. An online guestbook is available at In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Greater Atlanta Affiliate, 4840 Roswell Road, Building D, Suite 100, Atlanta, Georgia 30342 or MS Society, 1117 Perimeter Center West, Suite E101, Atlanta, GA 30338. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.

Rose Linder

87, FROM PITTSBURGH Rose Linder passed away on Sat., Aug. 25. She was born on Nov. 14, 1924 in Pittsburgh, Penn. to Anna and Julius Ruben. Her husband of 50 years, the late Charles Joseph Linder, preceded her in death in 2007. She lived in Pittsburgh until 1985, when she and her husband moved to Pompano Beach, Fla. In 2002, they moved to Roswell, Ga. to be close to the majority of their grandchildren. After graduating high school, she worked as a bookkeeper for a couple of local businesses in addition to working as the longtime bookkeeper for her husband’s scrap business. After raising their three children, she returned to work as an administrative assistant in both the Pittsburgh Public School system as well as at the Jewish Community Day School of Pittsburgh. She is survived by her children, Harvey and Gail Linder and Donna Jaffe, all of Atlanta, and Paul and Mary Anne Linder of Pittsburgh; her 10 grandchildren, Zal (Erin) Linder, Seth (Beth) Linder, Aaron Linder, Leah Malka Linder, Alan Jaffe, David Jaffe, Noah Jaffe, Sarah Linder, Jacob Linder and Emily Linder; and her three great-grandchildren, Aiden Linder, Avery Linder and Joelie Linder. Interment took place Aug. 27 in the Congregation Kether Torah Cemetery in Pittsburgh, Penn. Donations may be made to either the Atlanta Scholars Kollel or the Chabad of Cobb. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.

Morris William Macey 89, OF ATLANTA

Morris William Macey of Atlanta, 89, died Wed., Aug., 29, 2012. Morris was born in Camilla, Ga. to Isadore and Frieda Macey. He attended Camilla High School, received his J.D. (Phi Beta Kappa) and A.B. degrees from the University of Georgia and his L.L.M. from Harvard University. After law school, Morris moved to Atlanta, where he began his illustrious legal career. Morris was admitted to the state bar association in 1943, at which time he began serving in the Army. He was recipient of the eponymous Consumer Credit Counseling Service’s Morris Macey Distinguished Service Award, the State Bar of Georgia’s Creditor’s Rights Section’s Morris W. Macey Lifetime Achievement Award and the City of Atlanta Phoenix Award. He was president of the Commercial Law League of America, served on the Board of Trustees of Fisk University and was a Commissioner on Uniform State Laws. In addition, he received the David W. Pollard Achievement Award and an AV rating by Martindate-Hubbell; served as chairman of the subcommittee on crimes of the ABA as well as the committee on Revision of Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act; and was a member of the following committees: Revised Uniform Limited Partnership Act, Uniform Exemptions Act, Uniform Consumer Credit Act, Partnerships in Bankruptcy, National Conference of Bar Presidents and the National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees, among others. He was predeceased by his sister Annette Goldner and his wife Dora. He is survived by his sons Rex Phillip Macey, Morris William Macey Jr., and Jonathan Rosenfield Macey; and grandchildren Maxwell, Morgan, Meredith, Joshua, Alexandra, Zachary, Noah and Samuel. Services were held at The Temple. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Temple or the Alzheimer’s Association. Please sign the online guestbook at Arrangements made by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.

Naomi Glustrom Sachs 93, OF BOCA RATON

Naomi Sachs, 93 years old, of Boca Raton, Fla. and formerly of Atlanta, passed away on July 13. She had lived with her husband Bernie in Florida, New York and Pittsburgh, Penn. before retiring to Boca Raton. Surviving are her sister, Sarah Shaffer of Atlanta, and brother, Rabbi Simon Glustrom of New Jersey, as well as six nieces. The funeral was held in Florida.

Invest in Your Family’s Memories

Joseph Morris Soriano 26, OF ATLANTA

Louis Israel Wachter

HUSBAND OF JEANNE WACHTER Louis Israel Wachter passed away Aug. 24, 2012. He was the loving husband of Jeanne Wachter (nee Shuster); beloved father of Barbara (Martin) Wachter Needle, Fred (Leslie) Wachter and Randi (Jay) Rombro; devoted brother of Goldie Beber, Miriam Smelkinson and the late Albert Wachter, Dora Rabovsky and Pearl Berelowitz; and loving zayde of Carli and Ryan Needle; Isaac, Isadora and Abraham Wachter; and Jonah and Sam Rombro. He is also survived by many loving nieces and nephews. Services were held at Sol Levinson & Bros., Inc. on Sun., Aug 26 at 3 p.m. Contributions in his memory may be sent to Congregation Or Hadash, 6751 Roswell Road, Atlanta, GA 30328 or

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ArlingtonMP_JewishTimes.indd 1

SEPTEMBER 7 ▪ 2012

Joseph Morris Soriano, age 26, of Atlanta, passed away unexpectedly on Sat., Sept. 1. He is survived by his loving parents, Morris and Sherri Soriano; adoring sisters Julie Loftis (Stephen Loftis) and Lauren Soriano; grandparents Barbara and Sanford Orkin and Julia and Joe Soriano; numerous aunts, uncles, cousins; and a niece. Graveside services were held on Mon., Sept. 3 at Arlington Memorial Park at 2 p.m., officiated by Rabbi Hayyim Kassorla of Congregation Or VeShalom. Sign online guest book at Memorial donations can be made to Congregation Or VeShalom, the American Diabetes Association and the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.

29 8/21/12 5:18 PM

JEWISH PUZZLER by Kathi Handler (

Crossword Clues Across 1. Israeli drug company 5. Yehoshua novel 11. Paley’s network 14. “Founders and Sons”, author 15. Lee Strasberg acting style 16. Cheer for Sidney Franklin 17. Commandment word 18. Israel’s progeny 19. Yeled (Eng.) 20. In addition 21. Sheldon or Luckman 22. Hin or cubit 24. Gonif act 26. Abraham and Jacob 27. Counting of the __ 28. Giants baseman Sid 31. Dreidel letter 32. City of Reuben 35. Temple site 38. Biblical sign of mourning 39. Rodgers to Hammerstein 41. Agnon, initially 42. Sacred red cattle 44. Ruth’s people 46. Removed 47. Funnyman Jack _ 48. Shickers 50. Shissel (Eng) 51. Bezalel artist Ze’ev __ 55. Tassels 57. Gig for Peerce 59. Freud invention 60. Kfir pilot 61. Retail great 63. Ishmael progeny 64. Sharansky to friends

65. Vishniac’s homeland 66. Ancient seaport city 67. Hirsch, initially 68. Isaac and Jossi 69. Airline

45. Gershwin or Levin 47. Cows 48. Freeman and Getz 49. Award for Streisand 50. El Al hire 52. Precious stone 53. 100th of a shekel 54. Agnon and Sachs prize 56. Nebbishes 57. “Joseph and His Brothers”, author 58. Amens 62. Damage 63. Enjoyed cholent

Down 1. Hebrew month 2. Eilat, old style 3. State 4. Dear Abby’s sister 5. 2,051 6. Moses’ camouflage 7. Cable network 8. Anakim giant 9. Tekiah and Teruah Last week’s answers 10. Einstein specialty 11. Rona Barrett 12. Shofar’s sound 13. Pesach dinner 21. Halted 23. Waters of Marah 25. E-I connector 26. “Black Swan” actress 29. Tuches (Eng) 30. Generation (Heb) 31. __ Weiner, founder of cybernetics 32. Feh!! 33. Tel-Aviv to Bet She’an (dir) 34. XXX or Lamed 35. Fleischidic (Eng) 36. Affirmative 37. Owns 40. ___’easter 43. Max Baer’s weapon


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No 36, August 314 The Atlanta Jewish Times  

The Atlanta Jewish Times, a weekly newspaper, uniting the jewish community for more than 85 years

No 36, August 314 The Atlanta Jewish Times  

The Atlanta Jewish Times, a weekly newspaper, uniting the jewish community for more than 85 years