Congregation Beth Meier will debut a religious school program in Russian for children ages 6 to 8 at its Studio City campus starting Sept. 9.
Earlier this month, when the Los Angeles Daily News announced its endorsements in the San Fernando Valley’s 30th District Congressional race, the newspaper tapped two Jewish candidates — but not the same two candidates whom voters have been hearing so much about.
It was Patrick Hoffman’s first time in a gay bar, and he was terrified. Until he met Phillip Wells. Wells was tending bar at the Rainbow Club West in Knoxville, Tenn., that night some 10 years ago, and he flashed Hoffman his signature oversized smile.
The JCC at Milken in West Hills announced this week that it will shut its doors permanently as of June 30. The 42-year-old center will also close its Early Childhood Center, which has 80 preschoolers, on June 15.
Go “Walking in Memphis” with the soulful sounds of Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Marc Cohn. We dare you not to sing along with Cohn’s signature song about a spiritual awakening in the birthplace of rock ’n’ roll. 6 p.m. (doors open), 9 p.m. (show). $38 (younger than 18 must be accompanied by a paying adult). The Canyon Club, 28912 Roadside Drive, Agoura Hills. (818) 879-5016. canyonclub.net.
Rep. Brad Sherman doesn’t intend to follow Rep. Henry Waxman’s advice to give up his San Fernando Valley congressional race against Rep. Howard Berman.
The battle for Jewish geographical supremacy goes back to talmudic times, when Jews of Babylon (Bavli) and Jerusalem (Yerushalayim) each asserted their city as the coveted center of Jewish life. In the Middle Ages, the battle took place between the Jews of Northern Europe (Ashkenaz) and the Jews of Spain (Sepharad), the repercussions of which are still felt today. In the 19th century, the worldly Jews of Berlin scoffed at the Chasidic Jews of Warsaw for what they considered a parochial religious worldview.
If it’s happening in the San Fernando Valley, chances are Karen Young knows about it. Not only that — she’s probably already been there, chatted with the bigwigs and written up a whip-smart recap for her thousands of online readers.
Here are my complaints about the annual Israel Independence Day Festival:
A lack of funding has forced organizers to cancel this year’s Israel Independence Day Festival in Woodley Park, a community event that at its height attracted as many as 30,000 people. An immediate donation of around $30,000 could reverse the decision, according to Yoram Gutman, executive director of Israel Independence Day Festival, which runs the event. The festival honoring Israel’s 63rd birthday was scheduled for May 15.
Hundreds of young people gathered to become a part of Camp Obama for intensive three-day weekend retreats throughout the months of July and August of 2007. Several of the retreats were led by Marshall Ganz, a Harvard professor of sociology, and son of a rabbi and World War II Army chaplain).
Itzik Hagadol knows how to “open up a table,” as they say in Israel.
The restaurateur, whose real name is Itzik Luzon, has a reputation in Tel Aviv for lavishing his guests in Middle Eastern style — serving up an abundance of food that includes heaping platefuls of salads. After 14 years of booming business in Yaffo, Luzon has brought his popular restaurant, Shipudei Itzik Hagadol (Big Itzik’s Skewers), to the Encino Commons with help from his son, Amos, and their business partner Michael Fainman. Itzik Hagadol Grill opened its doors to a parking lot thronged with people on March 3.
Adat Chaverim is a small congregation of secular, Humanistic Jews, whose brochure proposes that "reason rather than faith is the source of truth, and human intelligence and experience are capable of guiding our lives."
Rabbi Leonard Muroff was driving to his home in Agoura Hills after conducting services at Temple Ner Tamid in Downey, when he heard that families of those thought to have been on the train were told to assemble at Chatsworth High School and wait for news.
Judd's parents, Art and Bunnie, have been making wine in Napa Valley for 25 years, first creating the Whitehall Lane label, then Judd's Hill.
Since opening in December 1958, Congregation Beth Meier has been a quiet, unassuming little staple of Jewish life near the corner of Moorpark Street and Colfax Avenue. The shul -- its name honors not Schimmel, but Mishnah writer Rabbi Meier Ba'al Ha'Ness -- has about 150 families. While Beth Meier's exterior replicates the Tomb of Rachel, its brown, wooden interior intentionally was designed to resemble the Little Brown Church in the Valley, the Sherman Oaks church where Ronald and Nancy Reagan were married. Only on the High Holidays was Beth Meier's cozy sanctuary traded for the larger Studio City Theater on Ventura Boulevard, now a Bookstar.
Two women shared a room in a major Israeli hospital some years ago, both awaiting the insemination portion of in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment. One of the women, "Mrs. Cohen," was undergoing the procedure under the supervision of a mashgiach [religious supervisor] from Machon Puah -- an Israeli religious fertility institution -- and the other, "Mrs. Rabinovich," was not.
The question has been posed to me frequently over the past several months: Is Valley secession "good for the Jews?"
Truthfully, it's a difficult question to answer. Other current matters are easier to address. Is President Bush good for the Jews? Prime Minister Ariel Sharon certainly thinks so. Are the Dodgers good for the Jews? Shawn Green's 42 home runs certainly say so.
But secession? Does it really matter for the Jews of Los Angeles whether they live in one city of 3.35 million people or two cities of 2 million and 1.35 million each?
For decades, hard-working, committed citizens have been struggling to break the Valley free from remote politicians and uncaring bureaucrats, whose interests are focused on downtown interests with downtown influence. If we are successful, Valley independence will provide a more representative and more accountable government for all Los Angeles residents.
Declines in public safety, after-school programs, health care, education, transportation and the loss of middle-
For the Jewish community, like the rest of Los Angeles, the issue of Valley secession boils down to one key question: Will we be better off after secession than we are now?
The following is a partial list of Jewish organizations, schools and synagogues in Valley cities with already developed, and growing, Jewish communities.
This month sees the official retirement of a Valley legend. Rabbi Eli Schochet of Shomrei Torah will step down after nearly 40 years at the pulpit. Still available for "life-cycle events," the synagogue's new rabbi emeritus will be essentially withdrawing from his very public position.
Weaving together the threads of music, youth activities and social action, the eighth annual Valley Jewish Festival will take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, June 6. This year's festival, which organizers call the largest event of its kind on the West Coast, finds a new home on the campus of Cal State Northridge.