Some traditions are waiting to be broken

Ellie Chestnut and David Abram take a stroll during their wedding in Brooklyn, New York. (Lorie Kleiner Eckert)

At the end of a Jewish wedding ceremony, there is the dramatic moment in which a wine glass (wrapped in a napkin) is placed on the ground. The groom stomps on and shatters the wine glass as the assembled guests shout their congratulations, “Mazel tov!” There are many interpretations… Read more »

Israelis are throwing themselves one-of-a kind weddings in nature

Shani and Ran Maaman embrace under the huppah at their wedding in the Judean Desert, May 11, 2017. (Dana Bar-On)

TEL AVIV (JTA) – In this tiny country, there are only so many places to have a wedding. Or so you would think. But a growing number of Israelis are creating one-of-a-kind outdoor weddings from the ground up. In some cases, they even start with the ground. “We brought in bulldozers for one couple,” said Ori Fuks, an Israeli… Read more »

Party planning 101: know your budget and guest list, local experts say

Planning a wedding, bar or bat mitzvah party, or another big occasion? Experts suggest you start by determining your budget, dates and the number of guests you plan to invite. That may sound fairly obvious, but Marci Rogers, director of sales at the Tucson Hilton East, says all too… Read more »

The Beautiful Meaning Behind My Daughter’s Nontraditional Bat Mitzvah

The writer, right, watching her daughter during her bat mitzvah. (Courtesy of Julie Wiener)

(Kveller via JTA) — At my daughter’s bat mitzvah last month, hundreds of people spread out to form a large circle and, together, carefully hold a completely unrolled Torah scroll. With the scroll spread out so that its entire contents were visible, my daughter found the spot on the… Read more »

‘Thirteeners’ celebrate, commemorate b’nai mitzvah

(L-R): Congregation Chaverim cantorial soloist Diana Povolotskaya, Cynthia Busby, Ellie Maas, Bill Kugelman, Barbara Holtzman, Michael Lex and Rabbi Stephanie Aaron. The first and second time b’nai mitzvah celebrants, dubbed ‘Thirteeners,’ range in age from Maas, 26, to Kugelman, 91. (Michael Miklofsky)

When Mike Lex turned 13 he did not celebrate becoming a bar mitzvah. He grew up in a remote part of Wyoming, a place where he says as a Jew he was in a tiny minority and because his parents did not practice, his 13th birthday came and went.… Read more »

Valentine’s Day: An ideal date for Jewish weddings?

This kippah will be distributed at the wedding of Lena Silver and Aaron Wolfson. (Courtesy of Silver and Wolfson)

LOS ANGELES (JTA) — In December, around the time my wife and I were celebrating our 35th wedding anniversary, we received an invitation to an outdoor Jewish wedding to be held on Valentine’s Day 2016. Printed on a red postcard affixed with a heart postage stamp, the couple, Lena Silver… Read more »

Tucson tallit artist: ‘Everything is generated by story’

The Rosh Hashanah-inspired pomegranate tallit Beth Surdut created for Rabbi Malka Drucker of Santa Fe, N.M., includes a quote from Psalm 96.

From Providence, R.I., to Santa Fe, N.M., to Tucson, with many stops in between, tallit maker Beth Surdut has always been an artist. Her approach to Judaism is as expansive as her art, always growing and changing. “Being brought up Jewish you’re brought up to have an inquiring mind,”… Read more »

Wildcats fan finds match on JDate … and her ring on the Brooklyn Bridge

Scott and Laura Cogan walk back from the chuppah

Laura Heisler, daughter of Barbara and Michael Heisler of Tucson, and Scott Cogan, son of Jesse and Sandra Cogan of Livingston, N.J., were married on May 26, 2013 at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort with Rabbi Robert Eisen and Ron Sandler officiating. Scott is the grandson of Abraham Olshan of… Read more »

Bridal show at Jewish History Museum brings back splendor of bygone eras

Models pose at the home of Catherene Morton prior to the Jewish History Museum’s bridal style show on Jan. 1. (Athol Cline/JHM)

Exotic gowns in red, purple and gold as well as the traditional white are on display at the Jewish History Museum’s sixth annual ketubah (Jewish wedding contract) and wedding dress exhibit, which continues through March 30. The exhibit features gowns from the 1500s to 2010, with origins from New… Read more »

Seattle couple gets married … and married … and married

(JTA) — In less than a year, Dane Kuttler and Rowan Parker exchanged vows in 10 different wedding ceremonies at 10 different venues on two coasts under nine different marriage canopies. In what Kuttler calls “Wedding Tour ’13,” the introverted Seattle couple wanted to share their celebration with as… Read more »

JDate success leads to smiles under chuppah, laughter on dance floor

Cari Frisch and Jason Drimer under the chuppah (Elyse Hall)

Cari Frisch, daughter of James and Myrna Frisch of Tucson, and Jason Drimer, son of Jeffrey and Linda Drimer of Syracuse, N.Y., were married on Oct. 28, 2012, at Skyline Country Club, with Rabbi Robert Eisen of Congregation Anshei Israel officiating. Honored guests included Jason’s grandmother, Selma Radin of… Read more »

Tucson gang celebrates a match made in preschool

(L-R) Jennifer Kern, Ashley Heather, Jodi Pulman, Shelley Hoffman, Katy Darnaby, Ilana Shenitzer, Lindsay Nagel, Megan Rovner, Bari Levine, Leslie Pearlman, Joey Blumenfeld, Sadie Reuben (Elyse Hall)

High school romances that endure and result in marriage are not unheard of. But marrying your friend from preschool days is a precious rarity. Ilana Shenitzer and Jeremy Rothstein have enjoyed a life-long friendship that blossomed into love in their late teens. They cemented their relationship under the chuppah… Read more »

Creating a wedding menu that transcends borders

(JointMedia News Service) — As borders become more faint, and online dating services more prevalent, many of us are pushed out of our respective ethnic bubbles and into the arms of a special someone from a different background. While Jews share many customs and traditions, we also have our… Read more »

Presumptuous JDate suitor is ‘the one’

Rebecca Light and Joshua Wertlieb

Rebecca Sara Light, daughter of Marcia and Ken Light of Tucson, and Joshua Michael Wertlieb, son of Dr. Donald Wert­lieb and Lorre Polinger of West Newton, Mass., were married May 20, 2012 at the Phoenix Art Museum. Rabbi Steven Foster of Denver, Colo., a family friend, officiated. The matron… Read more »