Celebrating local people, places, travels and simchas

Editor’s note: We accidentally omitted Sharon Klein’s byline and photograph in the Sept. 8 P.S. column, a two-page spread highlighting Israel summer travel (see azjewishpost.com/category/columns/ps/). Our sincere apologies.

Sailing, sailing

Holly Shenitzer, Jill Rosenzweig, Steve Shenitzer, Herschel Rosenzweig, and David Polan in Seville, Spain (Photo by Terri Polan)

From July 5-16, Terri and David Polan and Holly and Steve Shenitzer embarked on Oceania’s Iberian Tapestries cruise from Lisbon to Rome. On day two of their journey, who did they encounter on the streets of Seville, Spain, but Jill and Herschel Rosenzweig, fellow cruisers aboard their ship.

Some of the sites with Jewish significance on the group’s itinerary included Lisbon’s Jewish Quarter and the Lisbon Synagogue (formerly Shaare Tikva Synagogue); Seville’s Barrio Santa Cruz and former medieval Jewish Quarter leading into the Alcazar royal palace; Granada’s Alhambra fortress and palace; Nice’s Chagall Museum; and Rome’s Great Synagogue and Jewish Ghetto.

Toward a cure for Type 1 diabetes

U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, Aiden Glesinger, April Glesinger, and Sue Ross in McSally’s Washington, D. C., office

Aiden Glesinger, 14, has been living with Type 1 diabetes for 11 years. Since his diagnosis, his family and friends have supported fundraising efforts toward vital research through the annual Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation One Walk (to be held tomorrow at Reid Park) and the annual JDRF gala. Sue Ross, Aiden’s grandmother, has been leading the walk for the past 10 years and has served on the JDRF board for the past eight years. Aiden, a 2017 Tucson Hebrew Academy graduate, now a freshman at Catalina Foothills High School, continues to be involved with JDRF on every level. He has spoken to local organizations, educating them about the disease. From July 24-26, accompanied by his mother, Dr. April Glesinger, and his grandmother Sue, Aiden traveled to Washington, D.C. as an Arizona delegate to the biennial 2017 JDRF Children’s Congress. In preparation for the trip, he had specific projects – scrapbooking about his life with the disease, writing letters seeking research funding, and conference calling with the Children’s Congress committee. Aiden, his mother and grandmother met with U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, Sen. Jeff Flake, and Sen. John McCain’s personal aide seeking Congress’ renewal of the Special Diabetes Program for continued federal funding for T1D research. All 174 children from the United States and abroad heard from celebrities living with T1D who joined the delegation, including IndyCar driver Charlie Kimball, actress Brec Bassinger, football player Brandon Denson, baseball player Cory Vaughn, and hockey player Max Domi, to name a few. These role models spoke about their lives and achieving success while living with their disease.

Senior retreat

U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, Aiden Glesinger, April Glesinger, and Sue Ross in McSally’s Washington, D. C., office

By day, Abbie Stone is community life director at The Fountains at La Cholla retirement community. As a volunteer, she is B’nai B’rith Covenant House board president, a position she has held since 2013, having served on the board since 2008. Covenant House provides affordable, independent low-income HUD housing for seniors. Its board and staff work together to develop programs to enrich residents’ lives while fostering independence and dignity. The board oversees the management company and has established a nonprofit entity to raise funds spent on enhanced resident services and programs not supported by HUD.

B’nai B’rith International Center for Senior Services in Washington, D.C., of which Abbie is vice chair, sponsors a weeklong resident leadership retreat every other summer at the B’nai B’rith Perlman Camp in Lake Como, Pennsylvania. From Aug. 2-8, staff leaders Abbie and her daughter, Eve, 21, accompanied four seniors from Tucson — Jean Adams and Jan Rowand from Covenant House and Heather Dong and Tim Pease from the Gerd and Inge Strauss Manor on Pantano. They joined 24 other residents and staff from across the country in this beautiful camp setting in the Pocono Mountains.

At the beginning, these 28 “strangers” were paired up to meet, attend leadership sessions, and make new friends. The sessions included topics such as how to interact with management and the board, how to deal with difficult residents, how to write a mission statement, how to raise funds and tap into free ones, and how to engage with their elected representatives. The classes also targeted communication skills and leadership qualities. At this intergenerational, interdenominational retreat, residents interacted with the youth campers, adding another dimension to their experience. The group observed Shabbat and Havdalah, shared moving Shabbat memories, and participated in Israeli dancing. On the last night, they held a talent show, graduation, and friendship circle. Eve, the group’s photographer/cinematographer, made a movie of the entire week’s activities. Participants returned home ready to use their new skills to make positive changes in their respective buildings.

On a personal level, Abbie’s dedication to B’nai B’rith is familial, palpable and heartfelt. Her late father was an active member of the B’nai B’rith lodge in Baltimore. Abbie still uses the Kiddush cup with her name engraved on it given to her at birth by his lodge. Abbie, keep making a difference in so many lives.

On the move

Jacques, Robert, Julie, and Renee Sebag at the Kotel

For the past 14 years, Renee Sebag has been a freelance writer for the Arizona Jewish Post, using the pen name Renee Claire. This past week, she and her husband, Jacques, relocated to La Serena, Chile. Jacques, an astronomer and engineer, has been helping design and engineer an optical telescope that is now being built in the Andes on Cerro Pachón. The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope boasts the largest digital camera ever built for astronomy. Its 24-foot diameter mirror is unique in the world for having both primary and tertiary mirrors cast in the same piece of glass. Jacques came up with this original idea, which was brought to fruition at the University of Arizona’s Richard F. Caris Mirror Laboratory. The LSST will change the way that astronomy is carried out, as it is expected to generate a vast amount of data and discoveries in its 10-year survey. As Renee says, “This is an exciting move for an exciting project; however, we will miss our friends and this community.”

In August, Renee and Jacques traveled to Tennessee to witness the totality of the solar eclipse. The pair then flew to Israel for a niece’s wedding, joined there by their two younger children, Julie and Robert. Jacques’s two sisters and their families had recently made aliyah from France, making this their first family simcha together in our homeland.

Adios and best wishes in your new home and venture.

Rosh Hashanah family cooking class

“Since you hold that symbols are meaningful, every person should make it a habit on Rosh Hashanah to eat squash, string beans, leeks, beets and dates.” –Talmud, Horayot 12a

From right, instructor Jennifer Selco with Rebecca Crow and two of Rebecca’s grandchildren, Leila and Arielle, before their hands-on holiday cooking class at the J.

Whether called bubbe, zayde, saba, savta, or another endearing name, a grandparent’s relationship with their grandchildren is special. Many of the memories formed through this bond center around food — in particular, Jewish holiday fare.

On Sunday, Sept. 10, in celebration of International Grandparents Day and in preparation for Rosh Hashanah, the Tucson Jewish Community Center held a family cooking class in its state-of-the-art, kosher demonstration kitchen. Organized and led by Jennifer Selco, the  Tucson J’s director of Jewish life and learning, grandparents (or parents) and their grandchildren (or children) eight years of age and older learned to prepare delicious holiday items for the Jewish New Year. Recipes included honey cake, Israeli fruit salad, string beans with leeks, apples dipped in honey, and challah. Adult participants Rebecca Crow, Anne Johnson, Randi Levin, Sharon Strassfeld, and Ellen Meckler were joined by their respective grandchildren/children in this fun activity.

Time to share

I’m all ears. Keep me posted at the Post ­— 319-1112. L’shalom.