In Focus

In focus 4.14.17

(Left) Kip Perkins from the Physics Factory (with their Physics Bus) lights propane-infused bubbles on the hand of a Tucson Hebrew Academy fifth grader.

THA converts STEM to STEAM

Some 1,200 people visited Tucson Hebrew Academy’s third annual STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) Festival on Sunday, March 26. Jennifer Lehrfeld, STEM coordinator and science department head at THA, included an art component this year, turning STEM to STEAM. The festival’s hands-on exhibits included everything from a catapult to build-and-fly rocketry workshop.

Kosher in Disguise tour

Rabbi Eliezer Eidlitz (right) leads a tour of kosher products at an Albertson’s supermarket in Tucson on March 19.

Some 60 Tucsonans took part in a “Kosher in Disguise” supermarket tour on Sunday, March 19 at Albertson’s, 6600 E. Grant Road, led by Rabbi Eliezer Eidlitz, director of the Kosher Information Bureau. Congregation Chofetz Chayim, the Southwest Torah Institute and Albertson’s cosponsored the event. Eidlitz identified the most reliable kosher labels as well as products that are kosher and kosher for Passover even without an identifying label. The participants represented a broad spectrum of the Jewish community, says Rabbi Israel Becker.

Connections gets PURSE-onal

Connections co-chairs Tamar Bergantino (left) and Nanci Levy (right) with Rabbi Susan Silverman. (Martha Lochert)

Nearly 300 women gathered on March 5 for Connections, an annual brunch hosted by Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and held at the Tucson Jewish Community Center. The featured speaker was Rabbi Susan Silverman, author of the memoir, “Casting Lots: Creating a Family in a Beautiful, Broken World.”

Young Women’s Cabinet members packed purses with toiletries. (L-R): Beth McGinnis, Melissa Spiller-Shiner, Nicole Zuckerman-Morris, Sami Minkus, Ronit Stern, Gabby Erbst, Audrey Erman

This year’s event was dubbed “Let’s Get PURSE-onal.” Throughout the year, the Connections steering committee and Women’s Philanthropy social action committee held a purse collection drive, netting more than 150 donated purses. Some of the purses were auctioned at the event, raising more than $3,400 for Sister Jose Women’s Center, JFSA’s 70th anniversary project. The Young Women’s Cabinet also collected toiletries for Sister Jose as part of its mitzvah project. The YWC filled more than 75 purses that will be donated to the women of Sister Jose at a later date.

The Women’s Philanthropy advisory council presented the 11th annual Bryna Zehngut Mitzvot Award, recognizing an outstanding Jewish teenage girl, to Zoe Holtzman.

Intergenerational arts and crafts at Handmaker

Temple Emanu-El students joined Handmaker Jewish Services for the Aging residents to make Passover crafts on Sunday, March 26.

Hannah Berg and Temple Emanu-El eighth-grade student Brian Belkovsky make Elijah cups for the Passover seder at Handmaker.


Temple Emanu-El eighth-grade student Malakai Fisher shows Gertrude Shankman how to make an origami frog for the Passover seder table at Handmaker.