Around Town: History of Fort Worth weddings, a cappella, FUNdraiser

By Sharon Wisch-Ray

This photo is from the 1945 marriage of Fannette Bronstein, a war bride, with her groom, Norm Sonkin, in his Navy uniform and is typical of the era. Photo: Hollace Weiner

The Beth-El Archives Committee is gathering material for an exhibit called “Under the Chuppah: 100+ Years of Weddings in Fort Worth.”
The exhibit will look at changing trends in bridal gowns, chuppahs, ketubahs, invitations and newspaper coverage of marriages. The committee is asking brides and grooms to select one photo from their weddings to be included in a Fort Worth Wedding Album.
If you were married by a Fort Worth rabbi or belonged at any time to a Fort Worth congregation, you can be included in the exhibit. Many of the photos already submitted feature something Jewish — for example, the bride and groom standing under the chuppah, signing their certificate, or dancing the Horah.
Other pictures speak to a particular era. The oldest photos submitted are from the 1890s. Please submit a print or a color photocopy of the pictures and bring them to the office at Beth-El Congregation or contact Hollace Weiner at or Eileen Pink at

A cappella is hot — and it’s coming to Fort Worth

Six13, an a cappella group, is coming to Fort Worth to perform at a free concert presented by B’nai B’rith at 2 p.m., Sunday, May 31 at Congregation Ahavath Sholom, 6050 South Hulen.
The high energy six-man contemporary pop group’s Jewish songs are anchored by a thumping beatbox, intricate arrangements and soulful harmonies. Their songs range from dance tracks to rock anthems backed by hard-hitting “drums.” The members of the New York based group sound like a full band while using nothing but their voices.
The concert is free but tickets are required for admission and are available at all area synagogues.
The concert, a gift to the Tarrant County Jewish community, is presented by B’nai B’rith Isadore Garsek Lodge 269, with support from the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County and the Dan Danciger/FWHDS Supporting Foundation.
Putting on the free show for community was the brainchild of Rich Hollander, who is active in many area Jewish organizations. “When I first saw their Chanukah video, a parody of Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off, I knew they would be the perfect group to perform at a family concert. And then a few months ago when I heard Uptown Funk, their Passover parody song that went viral, I knew we had made the right decision.”
The group, which has performed all over the world, mix Jewish favorites with clever parodies of today’s hits. Along the way there are laughs, sing-alongs, demonstrations and words of Torah.
Another way to get tickets for this unique Jewish family concert is by connecting with B’nai B’rith President Harry Kahn at 817-319-4796 or Rich Hollander at 817 909-4354.

CBS FUNdraiser

Congregation Beth Shalom (CBS) will hold its FUNdraising extravaganza at 7 p.m., Saturday, May 16, at the synagogue, 1212 Thannisch Drive in Arlington.
In the past, CBS has had very successful galas that featured both live and silent auctions.
“We discovered the favorite auction items seem to be centered on food. With that in mind, we are planning our very first ‘A Taste of Beth Shalom,’” said event chair Stephanie Posner.
The live auction will feature gourmet dinners and desserts. The silent auction will include restaurant gift certificates, appetizers, fresh baked challahs and an assortment of other food-related items.
A dinner featuring a sample of the entrees that will be part of the “Live” auction will start the evening. Everyone will have an opportunity to try the main dishes prepared by CBS donors in the hopes that it will create a bidding frenzy.
Tickets for the dinner are $22 per person. To reserve tickets or to get more information, please contact CBS at 817-860-5448, or call the event chair, Stephanie Posner, at 817-675-4353. You can also reserve your spot and pay online for your dinner tickets online  at

Camp Gan Israel
returns for 6th summer

CGI, camp for Tarrant County Jewish kids, will be returning for its sixth summer. Set to begin June 22, CGI, focuses on creating a warm, safe environment for kids to learn and explore through tried experiential techniques.
“Our motto is ‘A summer of fun…. a lifetime of memories,’ and together with our dedicated staff and counselors we work to create the best camp in the area,” says Rishi Gurevitch, CGI director.
New programs in store for this summer include the Sabra Pioneer Traveling Program, which is open exclusively for kids entering seventh and eighth grades and will take campers on exciting trips in the DFW area. Younger campers are able to enjoy iCamp, a special program allowing campers to create their own custom funshop program. Together with their parents, campers can choose between such subjects as dance, karate, music, magic, art, and sports, and learn from professionals in their chosen field. Camp will also have regular swimming and biweekly field trips.
Some 35 campers attended CGI last summer and camp officials expect that with the addition of the Sabra Pioneer traveling camp, even more area kids will be joining. To meet the demand, camp has already increased its staff for the coming year.
“The counselors are at the heart of creating the CGI camp experience,” Gurevitch said. “We’re so excited to be bringing such a talented and caring group to Arlington this year as well.”
For more information visit or contact Rishi Gurevitch at  817-933-2877 or

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