Dancing, running, davening: local people, places and simchas

ZBT alumni Myles Beck with Ron Pardo, newly installed national president

Honor for ZBT/UA alum
Zeta Beta Tau, the nation’s first Jewish fraternity, which was found­ed in 1898 and became a non-sectarian brotherhood in 1954, held its 2010 national convention July 15-18 in Manhattan Beach, Calif. At the four-day conference, Ron Pardo, a 1988 University of Arizona graduate now residing in Los Angeles, was installed as national president for a two-year term. He is the first alumnus from Arizona’a Alpha Omicron chapter to attain this position.
Tucsonan Myles Beck (’67 University of Missouri, Omega chapter) was the ZBT chapter advisor when Pardo was a UA undergraduate chapter officer. Over the years, Myles has remained close to Ron and was a guest at his 1993 wedding. Five years ago, when Ron phoned Myles to inform him that he had been nominated as a national vice-president, and in a few years, would likely ascend to the presidency, Myles pledged: “When that happens, I’ll be there.” Sure enough, he made good on that promise.
Among the 400 in attendance at the Grand Awards Banquet and Installation, the current UA chapter was well represented, with 15 fraternity brothers present to witness this proud Wildcat moment.

Benjamin Allen Kleiman

In step with Benjamin Allen
If you tuned in to the Country Music Television station over Labor Day weekend, you might have watched Benjamin Allen Kleiman compete on the show, “Your Chance to Dance.” Taped over the summer, he performed with his pop-funk dance group, the Orienyentas (all members being either Asian or Jewish), to the Pussycats Dolls’ song, “When I Grow Up.” Ben didn’t win the $10,000 top prize, but enjoyed the “awesome” experience and exposure.
Kleiman, 30, was a leader growing up in Tucson, as Catalina Foothills High School student body president before graduating in 1998, and as a BBYO /AZA officer. He started dancing at Arizona State University. After completing his B.A. in business and communications in 2002, he moved to Los Angeles to chase his dreams. Our talented entrepreneur has his own weekly Internet show, The Danceplug Dish, and started Real Dance Productions, a company whose mission is to unite communities and enrich peoples’ lives through dance. After performing in numerous TV commercials, movies and live stage shows, our dancer/choreographer has most recently created GROOV3, a dance physical fitness workout, now at four L.A. locations, featuring a live DJ and combinations for all levels and ages. His motto: “Join the GROOV3MENT … Dance, Sweat, Live!” And as his latest undertaking, Ben has been asked to lead the warm-up for over 8,000 people at the American Heart Association’s Heart Walk in L.A. on Oct. 23.

L-R: Lauren Evans, Sharon Fass and JJ O"Neal

“Do a good turn daily”
This is the slogan of the Girl Scouts and Sharon Fass has taken it to heart.
Sharon, 16, a junior at Catalina Foothills High School, is in the process of earning her Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest achievement in scouting. She has teamed with fellow Troop 484 members Lauren Evans and JJ O’Neal to form the “Hearts for Diamonds” project. They hope to raise $25,000 to outfit a study room for young cancer patients in the bone marrow transplant ward at the new Diamond Children’s Medical Center on the campus of University Medical Center. The classroom would include laptops, desktop computers, printers, copiers, fax machines and furniture. Besides individual and sponsors’ donations, the girls are holding a Hearts for Diamonds Race (Walk/Run) Oct. 2 at Sabino Canyon with proceeds benefiting this worthy cause.
We applaud these scouts for their passion, leadership and commitment to making our community a better place.

A happy Sukkot
Guy Gelbart, Tucson’s new shaliach and director of the Israel Center, invited the entire Tucson Jewish community to be ushpizin (guests) at an open house in his family sukkah (temporary hut) on Sunday, Sept. 26. With his wife, Inbal, and their children, Carmel, Arbel and Clil, he greeted attendees with a yummy Israeli brunch, activities for kids and an opportunity to meet, chat and fulfill the mitzvah of eating in a sukkah during this Jewish fall harvest festival.
Some of the minglers at the Gelbart gathering included Gail Ben-Jamin, Lily Brull,  Mimi Curiel, Yosefa Einy, Opha Gronemann, Hope Hollenbeck, Sarah and Marty Johnston, Carol and Dan Karsch, Rachel Rivera, Debbie and Morton Smith, Diane and Ron Weintraub and Wanda Wolosky.

Celebrity sighting in shul
The buzz at break-fasts around town and at the Arizona vs. Iowa football game was that actor/comedian Adam Sandler was spotted earlier in the day at Temple Emanu-El’s Yom Kippur services. Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon gave P.S. the skinny, in his own words:
“Adam Sandler attended the Tot Yom Kippur service and later the main service with his and his sister’s children. The Tot service was led by Rabbi Jason Holtz, who kept thinking, ‘That guy looks exactly like Adam Sandler.’ When Rabbi Holtz asked the young children and parents what Yom Kippur was all about, the guy who looked like Adam Sandler raised his hand and answered, ‘You get presents for eight crazy nights?’ Rabbi Holtz thought, ‘That guy sounds exactly like Adam Sandler.’ Sandler was, however, otherwise very well mannered, warm, haimish, and down-to-earth, and expressed how much he enjoyed the Tot service …. He also told the preschool teachers who were caring for the youngest kids what a great job they were doing, got down and played with the kids, and took photos with the teachers. He then went with his nephew to the sanctuary for the main Yom Kippur service, draping the two of them with his tallit ….
“Sandler had arranged for reciprocity admission with the Temple Emanu-El office based on his membership in Wilshire Boulevard Temple in L.A., where he and his family live. My father, Rabbi Baruch Cohon, who co-officiated with Rabbi Holtz and me, is unsure if Adam Sandler’s visit was more impressive than his previous experience with two of his congregants during his tenure at Temple Emanuel in Beverly Hills — Groucho Marx and Barbra Streisand.”

Time to share
That’s the scoop for now. Keep me posted —319-1112. L’shalom.