In Focus

Israeli Scouts perform in Tucson

The Israeli Scouts Tzofim Friendship Caravan performed their high-energy song and dance show for about 200 people at the Tucson Jewish Community Center on Thursday, June 20. Prior to the show, the scouts spent the day at Camp J. They gave a morning show for the camp, the Taglit… Read more »

Shinshiniyot celebrate b’not mitzvah

About 60 community members celebrated with Tucson’s outgoing shinshinyot (Israeli teen emissaries), Rotem Rapaport and Ron Benacot, as they were called to the Torah at Temple Emanu-El on Saturday, June 15. The young women had celebrated coming of age with parties in Israel, but neither had read from the… Read more »

Truly Nolen volunteers pack food for JFSA’s Homer Davis project

Volunteers from Truly Nolen filled food bags for 60 Homer Davis students to supplement their summer nutrition. (L-R) Robert Folino, Brian Harper, Joshua King, Michael Barcelo, Spain Sivley, Tracy Masterson, and Reuben Hill. Front: Jeremy Christopherson (Photo: Mary Ellen Loebl)

On May 29, community volunteers from Truly Nolen Pest & Termite Control packed 240 bags of food to supplement nutrition for students at Homer Davis Elementary School over the summer break, when kids can’t get meals at school. The food program is part of the Jewish Federation of Southern… Read more »

Young leaders apply philanthropic savvy at JFSA annual meeting

JFSA Young Leadership Campaign volunteer Sarah Singer (left) presents a check to Tucson Hebrew Academy Head of School Laurence Kutler (center) and outgoing THA Board Chair Neil Kleinman. (Martha Lochert)

Two Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Young Leadership special teams received funds to disburse in the community, which they presented at the JFSA Annual Meeting and Community Awards Celebration on Thursday, May 9 at the Tucson Jewish Community Center. Recipient agencies included the University of Arizona Hillel Foundation, Jewish… Read more »

Israeli fallen soldiers mourned in song for Yom Hazikaron

Holocaust survivors lit memorial candles at the 2019 Yom Hazikaron event at the Tucson Jewish Community Center. (L-R): Dov Marhoffer, Wanda Wolosky, Walter Feiger, Pawel Lichter, and Wolfgang Hellpap. (Marty Johnston)

The Weintraub Israel Center organized a musical tribute to Israel’s fallen soldiers and victims of terror for a local commemoration of Yom Hazikaron, Israel’s Memorial Day, on Tuesday, May 7 at the Tucson Jewish Community Center.… Read more »

PJ Library kids learn value of helping others

Goldie Goldstein and her daughter share a loving moment while preparing a thank you letter to PJ Library founder Harold Grinspoon. (Photo: Mary Ellen Loebl/JFSA)

PJ Library hosted a “Kids Helping Kids” afternoon May 19 at Jewish Family & Children’s Services. Children and families gathered to learn about the mitzvah of helping others. Sharon Glassberg shared an educational presentation, reading from the book “Mitzvah Pizza.” Participants expressed their gratitude in drawings and letters to… Read more »

Tucsonans celebrate Israel at 71

Tots celebrate Israel’s 71st birthday with Tucson shinshiniyot (Israeli teen emissaries) Rotem Rappoport (left) and Ron Benacot.

More than 250 people attended a celebration of Israel’s 71st birthday on Sunday, April 28, at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, enjoying food, music, an artisan fair, kids’ activities and Israeli film shorts. The Weintraub Israel Center, a program of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and the Tucson… Read more »

Congregation Or Chadash blesses all creatures great and small

Alice Mayoral, with Jordan the lizard, won most unusual pet. Photos: Debe Campbell/AJP)

Pets of all description were on parade at Congregation Or Chadash May 5 for the annual pet blessing. About 50 gathered with their beloved dogs, a rabbit, and a gecko to share the Prayer for Animals, led by Rabbi Thomas Louchheim. The blessing also culminated a monthlong b’not mitzvah… Read more »

Life before war focus of community Yom HaShoah commemoration

Holocaust survivor Walter Feiger, right, lights a candle with his partner, Nancy Alexander, and Rabbi Thomas Louchheim of Congregation Or Chadash.

The community-wide 2019 Yom HaShoah commemoration on Sunday, May 5 at the Tucson Jewish Community Center focused on highlighting Jewish life and culture before the Holocaust. Rather than rehearse the political miscalculations and complicity of European nations or the mechanics of Nazi genocidal violence, says Bryan Davis, executive director… Read more »

JCC Holocaust memorial is subject of NW remembrance

From left, Rabbi Billy Lewkowicz, Ken Light, Fred Steiniger and Emily Ellentuck helped lead the Yom HaShoah program at the Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life on May 2.

On Thursday, May 2, the Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life held a Yom HaShoah Remembrance event. More than 40 attendees heard guest speakers Ken Light and Fred Steiniger talk about the Holocaust memorial at the entrance to the Tucson Jewish Community Center and watched a video… Read more »

Tucson Hebrew High holds creative commencement

Front row (L-R): Erika Spivack, Natalie Feldman, Jillian Cassius, Michael Gross; second row: Geva Ozeri, Mallory Hulsey, Rachel Davenport, Rebecca Dubin, Maya Levy; Back: Yuval Barel, Aaron Green, Téa Weiner, Brandon Esbit, Rafael Herreras-Zinman. Not pictured: Isaac Hammer

“Live, from Tucson, it’s Tuesday night!” The class of 2019 kicked off the 41st Tucson High School for Jewish Studies (Hebrew High) Commencement on April 30 in the rousing spirit of “Saturday Night Live.” The program, driven and written by the students, featured all the hallmarks of SNL, includin… Read more »

YMG poker tournament proceeds benefit Homer Davis Elementary School kids

(L-R): Ben Silverman, Steve Landau, Scott Goorman and Andrew Isaac play a hand at the JFSA Young Men’s Group Poker Tournament, April 21. (Photo Damion Alexander)

Mike Wexler reigned over the Young Men’s Group Poker Tournament April 21. Other top finishers, in order of rank, were Peter DeLuca, Josh Silverman, Myles Levine, and Mckenzie Carlat. Fifty players raised $1,800 at the event for “Making a Difference Every Day: The Homer Davis Project.” Proceeds will provide… Read more »

Or Chadash Sisterhood honors Saboda

(L-R) Missy Driggers, Kathylynn Saboda, Pearl Joseph, Emily Joseph, Rabbi Thomas Louchheim, and Cantor Janece Cohen at Congregation Or Chadash on April 14 (Courtesy Congregation Or Chadash)

The Sisterhood of Congregation Or Chadash honored Kathylynn Saboda as its first Eshet Or (Woman of Light) at a luncheon and end of year meeting on Sunday, April 14. Saboda served as Sisterhood president in 2004. She served on the congregation’s board of directors from 2005-2008; since 2008 she… Read more »

Homer Davis 10th anniversary celebration includes Maizlish gift

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMEJody Gross speaks to supporters at the “Making a Difference Every Day: The Homer Davis Project” 10th anniversary celebration event March 31. She presented a $12,000 Maizlish Foundation check for computer equipment to Principal Lyle Dunbar, left. (Debe Campbell/AJP)

A $12,000 donation will fund computers for additional classrooms at Homer Davis Elementary School. Jody Gross presented a check, on behalf of the 12 grandchildren who are part of the Maizlish Family Foundation, to the school’s principal, Lyle Dunbar, at the 10th anniversary celebration of “Making a Difference Every… Read more »

Jewish Latino Teen Coalition lobbies in D.C. for immigration reform

Members of the Jewish Latino Teen Coalition with U.S. Representative Ann Kirkpatrick of Arizona, April 3, (L-R): Elliot Baruch, Katie Kantor. Lily Molina, Derek Contreras, Mia Martinez, Amari Lampert, Kirkpatrick, Sofia Lyon, Bella Wexler, Shira Dubin, Noah Richter, Gavin Carmichael Photos courtesy Jewish Latino Teen Coalition)

Eleven members of the Jewish Latino Teen Coalition, a program founded by the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Jewish Community Relations Council and the Office of U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva, visited Washington, D.C., March 31-April 5 to lobby lawmakers on immigration reform. In addition to meeting with a dozen… Read more »