Around the Town with Rene

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Dr. Stanley Kurtz, grandson Dixon Bourne to celebrate b’nai mitzvah at Beth-El

Dr. Stan and Marcia Kurtz look forward to this coming weekend, when Stan and his grandson Dixon will celebrate their b’nai mitzvah on Nov. 14 at Beth-El Congregation. Dixon is the son of Tammy and Dr. Jeff Bourne of Templeton, Calif., and the brother of Sunny. An eighth-grade student, he is also the grandson of the late Barbara Kurtz and Richard and Loretta Bourne.
Dixon’s passions are baseball, soccer and reading. As part of his bar mitzvah gift, he attended this year’s World Series. Because he is such an avid baseball fan and player, Dixon wanted to incorporate his love of the sport into his mitzvah project. He decided to raise money for underprivileged children to attend Los Angeles Dodgers games. He raised several thousand dollars, and the Dodgers were so impressed with the program they decided to promote it as well. Dixon had an opportunity to sit in the Dodgers’ bullpen. The Dodgers have started an endowment that will continue the program for upcoming seasons.
“He is a very generous boy,” said proud grandfather Stan, “He thinks about good things.”
Dixon’s sister Sunny was named on the bimah at the old Temple Beth-El some 15 years ago, and Rabbi Mecklenburger officiated at her bat mitzvah two years ago in California.
Joining Rabbi Mecklenburger on the bimah will be Cantor Janice Mehring, who will sing with the choir and participate in the services. Cantor Mehring helped prepare Dixon for his bar mitzvah and she is studying for the rabbinate.
A large contingent of family and friends will attend, including Stan’s daughters, Abigail and Henri Migala and daughter Sofia, 8, of San Diego, Calif.; and Patricia Dorfman and Richard Drake of Queens, N.Y. Among the others expected are Marcia’s daughter, Nan Sonderer, and her daughter, Morghan of Sonita, Ariz., and family members and friends from Los Angeles, Tuscon, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, San Diego, Dallas, and Austin. Mazel tov to the Kurtz-Bourne families!

JFS Senior Luncheon, Nov. 24

Harry Kahn and members of the Isadore Garsek Lodge of B’nai B’rith International are busy preparing for the annual Jewish Family Service Senior Luncheon on Tuesday. Nov. 24. The luncheon starts at 11:30 a.m. Popular musicians Ariana and Armen Cherkosov are busy practicing special holiday music, making this event really something to look forward to. Reservations can still be made by calling Elsa at the JFS office at 817-569-0898. There is no cost to attend this event and you will have a wonderful festive meal with good friends, good music and a general good time.
Seniors in the community should consider attending the daily senior program at Beth-El Congregation. The group meets from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Great Hall. It’s good fun and good food.
JFS is also preparing for the Chanukah season. All the JFS senior citizens are excited about getting some items that are greatly needed. JFS hopes that the community will be as supportive this year as they have been in the past.

‘Daytimers’ to honor World War II vets

The “Daytimers” will honor World War II veterans, Wednesday, Nov. 18 at noon at Beth-El. Author Bryan Rigg will discuss one of his books, “Hitler’s Jewish Soldiers: Question of Jewish Identity and Morality.” He will also have copies available of his book “Rescued from the Reich: How One of Hitler’s Soldiers Saved the Lubavitcher Rebbe.”
Contrary to conventional views, Rigg reveals that a startlingly large number of German military men were classified by the Nazis as Jews or “partial-Jews” (Mischlinge), in the wake of racial laws first enacted in the mid-1930s. Rigg demonstrates that the actual number was much higher than previously thought — perhaps as many as 150,000 men, including decorated veterans and high-ranking officers, even generals and admirals.
World War II veterans who already have reservations include Tom Bessant, Ken Bobkoff, Bob Clemmer, Joe Coggan, Arthur Hofstein, Frances Kleiman, Irv Raffel and Dr. Irvin Robinson.
Other “early reservers” include Ellen Adrien, Adele Aransberg, Kenneth and Sandra Baum, Claudia Boksiner, Fanny Brooks, Bootsie Coggan, Edythe Cohen, Lee and Abe Cohen, Hortense Deifik, Bernice Friedman, Corinne Jacobson, Sheryl Levy, Rosanne and Bill Margolis, Rhona Raffel, Jacque Robinson, Barbara Rosenthal, Roz Rosenthal, Barbara Rubin, Sherwin Rubin, Tina Schreier, Judy and Burton Schwartz, Rosalie Schwartz, Nancy Sheinberg, Hy Siegel, Fannette Sonkin, Sonia Stenzler and Al and Sylvia Wexler.
Lunch will be catered by Pak-a-Pocket. Guests have a choice of turkey pastrami, chicken shwarma or baba ghanoush (eggplant). All are on pita bread, plus pickle, chips, cookies, coffee or tea. Cost is $9 each, or guests may attend for the program only for $4. All World War II veterans will be guests of the “Daytimers.”
For reservations, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, 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.

Hadassah’s Community-Wide Women’s Celebration: a home run!

To call the Fort Worth Chapter of Hadassah’s Community-Wide Women’s Celebration, featuring guest speaker Dr. Maria Sirois, a huge success would be an understatement. Since we’re in World Series mode, let’s use this analogy: Dr. Sirois hit a “home run” with the crowd cheering for more.
More than 150 women of all ages from Tarrant County attended the Nov. 2 event at Congregation Beth-El, which gave everyone the opportunity not only to hear this first-class speaker, but also to reconnect with old friends.
The women listened intently, constantly nodding their heads in agreement with what Dr. Sirois had to say as she brought warmth, honesty and humor to her stories. Her explanations about how and why women make a difference are reminders that we are not alone in our lives and in our community, that we are worthy and that we can find our way through challenges together. Those in attendance did not want the program to end and Dr. Sirois generously obliged by speaking longer, followed by a Q&A session.
Don’t worry if you missed this inspirational event. By popular demand, Hadassah is bringing Dr. Sirois back for another program in the spring. It will be a thought-provoking event not to be missed, so keep a lookout for future publicity in the coming months.
Kudos to Debby Rice and Rhoda Bernstein’s hard-working committee — Ava Beleck, Loretta Causey, Jane Cohen, Linda Hochster, Etty Horowitz, Eileen House, Shoshana Howard, Rebecca Isgur, Karen Kaplan, Mona Karten, Marcia Kurtz, Linda Lavi, Susan Luskey, Melissa Morgan, Dolores Schneider, Louise Vermillion and Laurie Werner — for their event’s huge success, and to the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County Endowment Fund for helping make this event a possibility.

A date to remember: the Schweitzers’ 50th

Len and Rose-Marie Schweitzer had the enormous pleasure of having their whole family with them to celebrate their 50th anniversary in Yosemite National Park. Len and Rose-Marie spent four wonderful days in the company of their sons, Jordan and Juli, Jeff and Margie and Loren and Anne. They were lucky to have marvelous weather, spectacular fall colors and activities that all enjoyed together or separately.
They took a tour to see all the beauty the area offered (Half Dome, El Capitan, Bridal Veil Falls, meadows and rivers and the famous Sequoia Grove). There is so much more to see that they vowed to return!
The climax was the 28th annual Ahwahnee Vintners dinner, which they all attended. There were 185 people in the gorgeous Ahwahnee dining room, and wines from the Napa Valley accompanied each of the five courses of the meal prepared by Chef Percy Whatley and staff. The dining room was aglow with candles, soft music and, best of all, their entire family together.
The 50th is a special occasion and what better way to celebrate than family being together!

News and notes

Congratulations to Garry Holland and Autumn De Maris on their forthcoming wedding on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 4 p.m. at CAS. Rabbi Alberto (Baruch) Zeilicovich will conduct the ceremony.
Congratulations to Julie Lazarus, who was awarded a commission to create a work of art for the City of Fort Worth as part of their Public Art program.
Mazel Tov to Lauren Gilbert and Houdi Epstein on their recent engagement. Lauren is the daughter of Cynthia and Burton Gilbert and the granddaughter of Sarah Betty and the late Ben Gilbert of Fort Worth and Sonny and Peggy Lerner of Dallas. Houdi is the son of Ricki and Moshe Epstein of Arlington. A spring wedding is planned.

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