Around the Town

Tzedakah Sunday is March 6: Please answer the call

Once again, Tzedakah Sunday volunteers will be calling you asking for your gift to the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County’s Annual Campaign. Please answer the call.
By now you know that programs at Jewish Family Services, Lil Goldman Early Learning Center, Tarrant County synagogues, UNT Jewish Studies Program, BBYO, Jewish War Veterans and other local programs are funded by the Annual Campaign. In fact, 50 percent of the allocable dollars raised in Tarrant County stays in Tarrant County. Another portion (42 percent) of allocable funds from Campaign was sent overseas last year to fund programs of the Jewish Agency and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, aiding needy Jews in Israel and around the world. The last 8 percent was used to fund regional and national agencies including university programs (Hillel), Birthright Israel, Jewish Children’s Regional Service and Jewish Council for Public Affairs, to name just a few.
So now that you know where the money goes (40 different places) and the thousands of lives the Annual Campaign contribution affects every day, please answer the call. It’s for you; it’s for all of us. Better yet, please join the Federation’s Mitzvah Corps at Ahavath Sholom that Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Volunteers are needed to help make phone calls, do administrative tasks or assist with refreshments. Shifts are only three hours in length. Call the Federation at 817-569-0892 to learn how you can help our community.

New York author visits ‘Daytimers’

“Daytimers” is in for a real treat when New York author and blogger Ben Feldman will speak for the group at a luncheon, Wednesday, March 9, at noon, at Beth-El Congregation. His title tells it all: “From Billy Graham to the Baal Shem Tov: A Jewish boy’s flight from the South in the time of Sputnik.”
A New York City historian, author, raconteur and New York Wanderer blogmaster, he delights the mind’s eye of history, riding the tall-tale bus with stories of growing up Jewish in a small Southern city in the time of Sputnik. Immersed among foot-washing Baptist neighbors and their revival-tent summers, Benjamin Feldman found his Yiddishkeit by fleeing to New York, first with his nose in a book of Damon Run­yon, then off at age 17 to Jewish Gotham for the next 40 years.
His love of Yiddish and stories of growing up down South are filled with delicious idioms and nostalgic endings: tartly observing the treasures of life and death in Vilna-on-the-Hudson, from Orthodox retro brashness to obscure eateries in the Chassidic hinterlands.
Feldman arrived in New York from Oak Ridge, Tenn., at 17 to attend Columbia College and hasn’t lived anywhere else since. In love with New York City, he said, “They’ll have to carry me out feet first.”
Lunch will be catered by Boopa’s Bagels, and guests have a choice of Turkey and Hummus on Sesame Bagel, Lox and Cream Cheese on Pumpernickel Bagel or Tuna Salad on Honey Wheat Bagel plus chips and cookies, coffee or tea. Lunch is $9, or guests may attend for $4 for the program only.
For reservations, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Irv Robinson, 817-731-7447, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Beth-El Congregation, 4900 Briarhaven Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109.
The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Beth-El Congregation with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

CAS plants 10 trees for Tu B’Shevat

The Kisin family with Susie Herman (second from right) and Etta Miller (right) at the CAS tree planting

Ahavath Sholom’s Interim Education Director Naomi Brand shared the following with the TJP: “On Jan. 30 members of Congregation Ahavath Sholom and the community continued the celebration of Tu B’Shevat by planting 10 donated trees from the City of Fort Worth in Kellis Park. The event began with a hot lunch in the Zale Auditorium cooked by parent volunteers: Mary Gilstrap, Stephen and Valerie Kaye, Daina Eckles and Max Brand. Stephanie Corso, a member of the congregation and environmental scientist with the City of Bedford, gave a moving introduction about why we should care about our environment and that even the smallest effort to recycle, plant or leave a smaller imprint makes a big difference and is important. She also talked about how humans are actually more like trees than one might think. After lunch everyone joined in for a police escort out to Kellis Park for the planting. It was a gorgeous day. Many had previously also ordered trees to be planted in Israel and were wearing Tu B’Shevat shirts that said things like ‘God Loves Green’ and ‘As my parents planted for me so I plant for my children.’ This saying from the Talmud not only is a great one, but had extra-special meaning for the families that had three generations planting together: Ben, Chad and Ted Herman; Sheryl, Aaron, Jacob and Carter Levy; and Jakub, Max and Gabriel Brand. About 60 people participated including most of our confirmation class and many from our religious school. Special thanks go to Etta Miller and Rabbi Gary Perras for coordinating with the city to make this event possible, and to Harry Bulbrook for drilling the holes. Everyone in the community is welcome to join us for our events. Please call the shul for more information and to find out what we have planned next. 817-731-4722.”

JWI monthly meeting March 2

Ina Singer tells us that Jewish Women International will hold its monthly meeting next Wednesday morning, March 2, at Beth-El Congregation. Dr. Carole Rogers will speak on co-dependency.

Save the date: Purim ball at Ahavath Sholom

Come to the Purim Masquerade Ball at Congregation Ahavath Sholom on Saturday evening, March 19, at 7 p.m., immediately following the 6:30 Megillah reading. There will be dinner and dancing with live music, an exclusive white elephant raffle and lots of surprises. BYOB. Cost is $25 per person (adults only; child care is available with reservation). Please prepay for tickets at the shul office by calling 817-731-4721. Ahavath Sholom is located at 4050 South Hulen St. in Fort Worth.

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