Foundation renews Israel Scholarship Grant

The Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona will offer a second annual Israel Scholarship Grant, providing up to $2,500 for one trip to Israel. Any non-profit organization with 501(c)(3) status that is sponsoring an individual or group trip to Israel may apply for the Goldman Family Israel Scholarship Grant.… Read more »

Matzah ball quest to spice up Jewish food fair

A Guinness Book of World Records attempt at the world’s largest matzah ball will be a highlight of the third annual Jewish Food Festival & Family Fun Fair on Sunday, Nov. 7. The event will be held at Brandi Fenton Memorial Park, 3482 E. River Road, from 11 a.m.… Read more »

Secular world to inform youth mitzvah day

Congregations Or Chadash, Chaverim, and Anshei Israel will hold a community Youth Mitzvah Day on Sunday, Oct. 31, combining their religious school studies. The event, open to all Jewish students from pre-K through 8th grade, will be held at Congregation Or Chadash from 9:30 a.m. to noon. The theme… Read more »

Music, joy core of new Renewal congregation

Rabbi Shafir Lobb

A focus on blending heart and mind brings a new congregation to Tucson. Congregation Kol Simchah (voice of joy) will hold its first Friday night Shabbat service and dinner on Nov. 19. “Born of the seed of Ner Tamid,” says Rabbi Shafir Lobb, the new Renewal congregation has emerged… Read more »

UA’s Dever returns for free lecture, fundraiser

William G. Dever

William G. Dever, professor emeritus of the Arizona Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Arizona, will deliver a Shaol Pozez memorial lecture, “The Lives of Ordinary People in Ancient Israel: Where the Bible and Archaeology Intersect” on Monday, Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. at the Tucson Jewish… Read more »

JFSA leaders embrace LEAF, ‘Tzedakah Tree’

In response to unprecedented requests for economic assistance from Jewish Tucsonans, the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona has launched the Local Emergency Assistance Fund to provide assistance with housing costs, food, job placement and more. While pledges to the Federation campaign traditionally are unrestricted, the Federation board is allowing… Read more »

JFSA grants support additional senior programs

The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona has awarded grants to five local Jewish agencies and synagogues to create programs for Jewish seniors that will focus on transportation needs, helping seniors stay in their homes, and counseling services. Jewish Family & Children’s Services has received a grant to assist low-income… Read more »

New Jewish Elder Access project launched

Irene Lloyd

Jewish seniors who are new to Tucson, need transportation or other resources, or want to improve their job skills, can now call Irene Lloyd, coordinator of JEA (Jewish Elder Access) for assistance at 404-4596. JEA, which started on Aug. 2, was created under the auspices of the Jewish Federation… Read more »

Jewish History Museum time capsule is window to Tucson’s past, future

U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords prepares to open the Jewish History Museum’s time capsule Oct. 24. (Madeline Friedman/Jewish History Museum)

Hundreds of people crowded around the courtyard of the Jewish History Museum on Sunday to witness the opening of a 100-year-old time capsule. The capsule had been placed under the cornerstone of the building, originally the Stone Avenue Temple, when it was built in 1910. The building was the… Read more »

Blind Israeli’s marathon run going to the (seeing-eye) dogs

Noach Braun, left, and Gadi Yarkoni practice runningtied to each other in preparation for the New York Marathon, July 2010. (Courtesy of Michael J. Leventhal)

NEW YORK (JTA) — When Noach Braun and Gadi Yarkoni run this year’s New York City marathon on Nov. 7, they’ll be tied together at the hip — literally. Yarkoni, an Israeli who lost his sight during combat in Lebanon 15 years ago, will be tethered by a strap… Read more »

Cantor could help GOP take over the House, but can he win over the Jews?

U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, shown speaking at the 2009 General assembly of the Jewish Federations of North American, is poised to shepherd the GOP to regain control of the U.S. House of Representatives. (Robert A. Cumins/ Jewish Federations of North America)

WASHINGTON (JTA) – Eric Cantor has spent a lifetime relishing wearing the other hat. Among Jews, the Republican congressional whip from Richmond, Va., likes to play the genteel Southern conservative, the posture that won over his wife, a socially liberal banker from New York. Among southerners, he’s the nice… Read more »

Plenty of Jews on board California’s bid to legalize marijuana

Activist Ed Rosenthal, shown in an undated photo in a marijuana greenhouse, says "Jews have a special affinity to marijuana." photo courtesy of Ed Rosenthal)

OAKLAND, Calif. (JTA) — Ed Rosenthal has been working to legalize marijuana in California since he moved to the state in 1972. Vindication may finally be at hand for the Bronx-born former yippie. On Nov. 2, California voters will consider Proposition 19, a ballot initiative to legalize the cultivation… Read more »

Federations, JCPA teaming to fight delegitimization of Israel

NEW YORK (JTA) — The Jewish Federations of North America and the Jewish Council for Public Affairs are launching a multimillion-dollar joint initiative to combat anti-Israel boycott, divestment and sanctions campaigns. The JFNA and the rest of the Jewish federation system have agreed to invest $6 million over the… Read more »

Unifying factor in 2010 election: never before

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is facing Tea-Party challenger Sharron Angle. (Brian Finifter)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Talk to veteran campaign watchers about this year’s congressional races, and within seconds they will tell you that they’ve never before seen elections quite like these. “We’ve never seen a cycle where there’s been this many races this close to an election and you don’t know… Read more »

Jewish officials flex persuading muscles ahead of possible GOP wins

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Across the United States, Jewish community professionals are honing their skills of suasion, preparing to deal with a new crop of lawmakers who are unfamiliar with Jewish organizational priorities — and who are likely to be unenthusiastic once they’re in the know. This season of anti-incumbent… Read more »

Photo exhibit at JCC celebrates THA kids’ love of learning

A photographic exhibit by Tucson Hebrew Academy, “The Art of Making a Difference,” is on display at the Tucson Jewish Community Center’s Fine Art Gallery through the end of the month. Established for THA’s Tikkun Olam event on Oct. 24 honoring Tucson’s rabbis, the exhibit “is a celebration of… Read more »

Jewish heritage helped push Phillies’ manager Ruben Amaro into baseball

Ruben Amaro Jr., right, the general manager of the Philadelphia Phillies, joins Mayor Michael Nutter and the team’s mascot at a pep rally in Philadelphia during the playoffs in 2009. (Darryl W. Moran)

PHILADELPHIA (JTA) — The son and grandson of professional baseball players, Ruben Amaro Jr. was as good a candidate as any to become a baseball lifer. Yet soccer was actually his “first love” as a kid, and he was good enough at the sport to qualify for a youth… Read more »