Dallas Doings

Back in class at Mesorah

Junior Yael Parkoff (left) and senior, Sivan Naor, engrossed in serious studying during the first week of school at Mesorah.

Mesorah High School began its 12th year with its annual retreat, this year in Austin. The 45 students, the school’s largest number yet, enjoyed boating and caving, as well as basketball and other activities, as the girls reconnected after their summer vacations and welcomed the freshmen and new students. Classes began on Aug. 29, with a full curriculum of challenging Judaic studies classes and college preparatory general studies classes.

Herzl Hadassah opener

Herzl Hadassah will hold its opening meeting featuring Rabbi Shawn Zell of Congregation Tiferet Israel at 10 a.m. on Monday Sept. 12 in the Senior Assembly Room at the Aaron Family JCC, 7900 Northaven Road.
Rabbi Zell’s topic will be “Personal Experiences and Reflections for the 100th Anniversary of Hadassah.” Lunch, prepared by the Herzl Board, will be served, and all members and guests are invited to attend. Hadassah projects and plans for the coming year will be discussed.

What’s new at the JSI?

With Rabbi Joel Zeff now joining Executive Director Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger, the Jewish Studies Initiative of North Texas is ready for an exciting year of greatly augmented class offerings. JSI invites all Jewish adults to taste the intellectual richness and spiritual depths of Judaism through partaking of one or more of its variety of classes and programs, many of them beginning this coming week. Some of the over 15 different classes include: “Adventures in Hasidic Thought;” “Returning the Awe to the Days of Awe;” “Why the Jews Rejected Jesus;” “From Slavery to Sinai;” “Love. Lust and Longing: Men and Women in the Hebrew Bible;” “The Thinking Person’s Guide to Judaism;” “Ultimate Issues: Pushing the Borders of the “Unknowable — Beyond;” and “Talmud with Training Wheels.” JSI will also offer an intensive introduction to Judaism class called “Encountering Judaism” for those who feel the need to start at the beginning.
JSI partners with synagogues and institutions to offer classes throughout the Metroplex. For a list of classes and more information, visit www.JewishStudiesInitiative.org, send an e-mail to ravhanan@sbcglobal.net or call 214-789-7241.

Akiba Academy launches auction benefitting 2011 Inspire! Gala

Akiba Academy’s annual Inspire! Gala and Auction will be held on September 25 at 5:00 p.m. at the Westin Galleria of Dallas. For over 25 years, the annual dinner and auction has brought the Jewish Community together to raise essential support for the school while also providing a night of great food, friendship and fun.
This year, guests will have the opportunity to bid on one-of-a-kind items in both a live and silent auction. In addition to the auctions featured the evening of the event, an online auction will commence on September 12 and conclude on September 22 at 11:59 p.m.
This year’s auction features a robust selection of items, from game tickets to a vintage airplane ride and spa retreats. Guests can visit www.biddingforgood.com/akibaacademy to set up a personalized log-in, view the featured items and place bids.
Proceeds from the auctions benefit the Akiba Academy student body by providing the necessary financial support that maintains tuition costs. Akiba Academy acts not only as a school but also as an important hub for the Jewish community. This support, along with very generous donations, ensures that no student is turned away for financial reasons, making an Akiba education a reality for all Jewish families in Dallas.
In addition to being an annual tradition within the Jewish community, the 2011 Inspire! Gala and Auction is especially important for Akiba as it will also mark the launch of the school’s 50th Anniversary Celebration that will continue through the 2012-2013 academic year.
To reserve seats for the 2011 Inspire! Gala and Auction and honor the Women Who Inspire! please contact Christy Bonds at 214-295-3411, or via email at cbonds@akibaacademy.org.

MitzvahFest 2011

Do you have a child’s bar or bat mitzvah to plan this year? Then be sure to set aside the time on Sunday, Sept.18 from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. to attend the fifth annual MitzvahFest. This exclusive event has been growing every year and this month’s affair at the Intercontinental Hotel looks to be better than ever.
Every parent wants to host and create a memorable experience for their children, family and guests, and MitzvahFest ‘11 will focus on assisting families in “getting the most value for their money” in a one-stop-shopping space.
The fest was designed to assist parents from congregations across the community and entice their children to choose a special simcha theme. It gives all the opportunity to meet planners, DJ’s, venues, caterers, photographers, designers, card vendors and specialty item vendors in one centralized location, and to help families and friends explore new ideas for their big celebration. Music, catering, gifts, entertainment, area venues and personalized services will all be represented to help one create “the greatest impact,” while maintaining a reasonable budget.
As in previous years, the family’s $10 MitzvahFest admittance fee will be donated to a charity sponsor. This year’s recipient is Jewish Family Service, an organization committed to improving lives and rebuilding hope, and providing counseling, food and dedicated support for needy area families for over half a century.
MitzvahFest is organized by GladTower Live Productions. For more information, call 972-690-0990.

Amy Roseman joins DKMS

Amy Roseman has accepted a position as a donor recruitment coordinator for DKMS, the world’s largest bone marrow donor center.
In 2009, Amy was a volunteer for a DKMS donor drive for her longtime friend Karen Mellow Stock. Over 800 donors were added to the donor registry at the drive held at NorthPark Center. The DKMS mission to save lives by recruiting bone marrow donors for patients with leukemia and other blood cancers is truly inspiring to Roseman who says, “The closer a patient can get to his or her genetic heritage, the better chance we have of finding a match. Karen is one of the inspiring, very lucky patients who was able to find a donor. “I am working to find more matches and change the statistics by adding willing donors to the registry,” she said.
For more information about joining the 2.8 million donors in the registry or holding a donor drive, contact Amy Roseman at amy@dkmsamericas.org or go to www.dkmsamericas.org.

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