Help local Ukrainian refugees and feed the hungry in Israel while enjoying some “old-time” Yiddish-Ukrainian and American music on Saturday, Jan. 6 at 8 p.m. at the Highland Park Conservative Temple-Congregation Anshe Emeth. The benefit concert will star In Der Heym (Down Home) featuring Michael Alpert and Craig Judelman performing Ukrainian-Yiddish fiddle tunes and klezmer music as well as original melodies, and local klezmer dance band Tsu Fil Duvids.
Benefitting will be two charitable organizations: the Leonid Foundation, a nonprofit whose mission is to help Ukrainian refuges who have come to the central New Jersey area and ship humanitarian aid to Ukraine; and Leket, Israel’s national food rescue organization, which harvests surplus agricultural produce and collects cooked meals to distribute to those in need throughout the country and is now providing for those displaced by the war with Hamas.
In Der Heym’s repertoire includes a cappella ballads, “blazing” fiddle tunes and songs about workers’ rights, migration and broken hearts. Its concerts embody the American Jewish experience while connecting it across the seas, particularly to the Ukrainian heartland.
Tsu Fil Duvids, whose name means Too Many Davids in Yiddish, has appeared at Jewish festivals, weddings, venues and community centers throughout the metropolitan area.
Tickets are $25, which includes coffeehouse and dessert reception. Registration can be done online by Jan. 5 at https://www.hpct-cae.org/benefit-concert-for-israel-and-ukraine, or pay by cash, check or credit card at the door.
For more information, contact Natalie Aloyets Artel at (732) 535-0928 or email@example.com.
Naomi Ragen, an Israeli American author of 12 internationally bestselling books, will speak via Zoom from Israel about her latest, “The Enemy Beside Me,” on Sunday, Jan. 7 at 11 a.m. in a program sponsored by Congregation Torat El in Oakhurst.
The book revolves around the Lithuanian-Nazi collaboration and distortion of history and what the relationship should be between children of survivors and those of perpetrators. Its main character, Milia Gottstein, has taken over the Survivor’s Campaign from her father and grandfather, an organization dedicated to bringing Nazi war criminals to justice. Just as she prepares to hand off her job to others, she accepts an invitation as keynote speaker at a Holocaust conference in Lithuania, a country that has not only engaged in Holocaust distortion but has refused to educate its children about the true role their country played in the annihilation of its Jewish population and has continued to honor mass murderers.
Ragen has lived in Israel since 1971, and in addition to her novels, wrote the hit play, “Women’s Minyan.” She is an Orthodox feminist who has been a tireless advocate for women’s rights in Israel.
The program is free, but registration is required at www.torat-el.org.
Shir Appeal, the award-winning co-ed Jewish a cappella singing group from Tufts University in Massachusetts, will perform Saturday, Jan. 13, at 7 p.m. at East Brunswick Jewish Center. Shir Appeal has toured across the country performing at synagogues, day schools, nursing homes, fundraisers and private parties. Its music style is eclectic and includes Israeli pop, rock and folk, English music with Jewish themes, Jewish world music and liturgical songs.
The evening will begin with appetizers and dessert will be served following the concert. The event is geared for both adults and teens. Other arrangements should be made for smaller children. Tickets are $42 for adults and $22 for teens 13-18. RSVP by Jan. 9 athttps://www.ebjc.org/ShirAppeal. No refunds after Jan. 8.
For more information, contact Shirley Sommers at (908) 705-2409 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a great potentially award-winning cholent recipe? Enter it in the Top Cholent Chef Cook-Off sponsored by Middlesex Torah Links. Cholents will be prepared in the kitchen of Torah links in East Brunswick on Thursday evening, Jan. 4, or Friday, Jan. 5, at a time to be arranged with co-director Rabbi Mayer Freedman. Tasting and voting will take place during kiddush on Jan. 6 with the winner receiving a prize.
Participants must use only slow cookers and utensils available in the kitchen, including peelers, cutting boards, measuring spoons, can openers and knives. If another utensil is needed, it will be provided upon advance request. Ingredients must be purchased by participants and be in unopened packages with appropriate kosher certification, including spices. Although raw vegetables don’t require kosher certification, only those– such as carrots, potatoes and onions–that don’t require checking for insects may be used.
All cholents will cook in virtually identical, six-quart slow cookers with liners to facilitate faster clean-up and damage should the contents burn. All cooks must clean up after themselves. Slow cookers may be plugged in immediately or at a requested later time.
For a list of unpermitted vegetables that require checking for insects go to: www.oukosher.org/images/uploads/OU_Guide_to_Fruits__Veg.pdf or www.crcweb.org/kosher/consumer/fruit_veg_policy.html.
For additional questions, contact Freedman at email@example.com or Torah Links other co-director Rabbi Dovid Gross at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (732) 613-1613. To register go to: https://www.middlesextorahlinks.org/cholent-rules.