Home March 2024 JLife Extra- March 1, 2024

JLife Extra- March 1, 2024

Whether you see yourself as a ferocious lion, pirate, fairy princess or Queen Esther the 17th annual Congregation Ohav Emeth Purim Costume Gemach in Highland Park has a look for your Purim celebration.
The gemach, which bills itself as the world’s largest Purim costume gemach with more than 1,000 available to borrow, will be held on four dates: Sunday, March 3, noon-4 p.m.; Thursday, March 7, 6:30-8;30 p.m.; Sunday, March 10, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; and Wednesday, March 13, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Purim begins the evening of March 23,
Both children’s and adult costumes are available for a suggested donation of $5 each, which is earmarked for the synagogue’s youth department. However, this year because of the Israel-Hamas War funds will also be donated to the Michel Levin Lone Soldier Foundation, which helps many of the local community’s children now defending Israel, according to synagogue youth director Esther Greene.
Gemach regulars who return year after year me from as far away as Lakewood and Passaic to find the perfect holiday costume. The costumes are also available throughout the year for use in school plays, projects or parties.
For information go to https://www.facebook.com/costumegemach or email oecostumegeamch@gmail.com.


The Marlboro Jewish Center and Ferencz Institute for Ethics, Human Rights and the Holocaust have formed a joint initiative, the Center to Combat Antisemitism. Its first pilot program will be a five-session seminar for teens in grades 9-12, Standing up to Antisemitism. The programs will be held Wednesdays, 7-8 p.m., on March 13 and 27, April 10 and May 1 and 8.
The non-profit institute is dedicated to providing Holocaust programming transcending international, intergenerational, interfaith and interprofessional boundaries to promote justice, tolerance, equality and human dignity for all people. It also works to promote medical ethics.
The initial program’s goal is to help students in grades 9-12 understand, process, and respond to events taking place in society and to shape narratives of how teens can combat antisemitism through educational resources and leadership skills, training to help teens strengthen their Jewish identity and learn how to advocate and make a difference in their community. It will help arm Jewish students with the resources they need to combat antisemitism in high school, college and beyond.
Each student will receive a copy of “By the Grace of the Game: The Holocaust, a Basketball Legacy, and an Unprecedented American Dream” by Dan Grunfeld and “Israel: A Simple Guide to the Most Misunderstood Country on Earth” by Noah Tishby as well as a Standing Up to Antisemitism Toolkit with resources from the seminar. Upon successful completion of the program, students who attend all seminars will receive a Standing Up to Antisemitism Ambassador Certificate.
The seminar is free for MJC Hebrew High School students, $36 for members not enrolled in Hebrew high school and students who are not MJC members.
For questions contact Rabbi Michael Pont, rabbipont@mjcnj.com. Register at https://www.mjcnj.com/form/AntisemitismCourse.


Rutgers University’s Allen and Joan Bildner Center for the Study of Jewish Life will present a program on Monday, March 4, at 7:30 p.m. dealing with racial and ethnic “passing” in literature and film and the struggles felt by both Blacks and Jews to fit in American society.
The Abram Matlofsky Memorial Program, “Not Quite White in Fiction and Film,” will be held at the Douglass Student Center in New Brunswick and feature a panel discussion with: Rachel Gordon, the Shorstein Professor of American Jewish Culture and Society at the University of Florida; and Donavan L. Ramon, assistant professor of African-American and English literature at Southern Illinois University. It will be moderated by Gene Seymour, a cultural critic who writes frequently for CNN Opinion and has written about music, movies and culture for The New York Times, Newsday, Entertainment Weekly and Washington Post.
The discussion will focus on two acclaimed novels, “Gentleman’s Agreement,” Laura Z. Hobson’s bestseller that was published in 1946, shortly after World War II; and “Passing,” written by Nella Larsen,’ published in 1929 during the Harlem Renaissance. Both were subsequently made into movies. The novels investigate how anti-Black racism and antisemitism have shaped the integration of Blacks and Jews into White Christian American society. Penned by women, both novels also explore issues of gender and social class.
The program is free, but advance registration is required at bildnercenter.rutgers.edu.


Come laugh and help support Israel when Temple Miriam in Elberon hosts comedian and author Rabbi Bob Alper on Saturday, March 16 at 7 p.m. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Israel.
Alper’s comedy bits are played daily on SiriusXM satellite Radio and he has been seen on the BBC, Showtime, CNN, Good Morning America, the Today show and the Early Show, among others. He has performed at the Montreal Comedy Festival New York’s famed Chautauqua Institution, Hollywood’s Improv and The Comedy Store. Alper has performed across North America and England at corporate events, theaters, non-profits, conventions, private parties, churches and synagogues and has performed more than 200 shows with Muslim and Arab comedy partners, primarily a colleges and universities. He is a full-time comic, who also conducts annual High Holiday services as well as an author of three books “Life Doesn’t Get any Better Than This,” Thanks, I Needed That” and “A Rabbi Confesses,” a full-color, award-winning cartoon book.
The event is being hosted by Michelle Kutsak, the Men’s Club, Sisterhood and Rabbi Cy Stanway. Tickets are $25, which includes one drink ticket, in advance and $30 at the door. A cash bar will be available.
Tickets are available at the temple office, through Venmo—a QR Code is posted on the temple’s website–templebethmiriam.org— or through shul cloud. For information contact Rabbi Cy Stanway at (732) 222-3754 or rabbi@bethmiriam.org.


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