Wednesday, August 05, 2020


Thurnauer School of Music Offers  Summer Programs for Students Nationwide

(Courtesy of Thurnauer School of Music) New Jersey’s premier community music school, The JCC Thurnauer School of Music in Northern New Jersey, is proud to offer a full range of summer music distance-learning options for families homebound by the COVID-19 crisis. Enrollment is open to students around the country and beyond, and


Put on a Happy Face

“Gray skies are gonna clear up”—everyone knows the next line sung by Tony Bennett—“Put on a happy face.” These days it is really difficult to know if someone has a happy or sad face. It’s hard to tell when you cannot see their mouths and facial features. Recently we read the overwhelming challenges that those who are


Remembering When: Home Archaeology in Pandemic Times

Strange times often lead to even stranger pursuits. In the wake of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, a new type of archaeology has emerged, a practice that we can call “home archaeology”! I refer to the recently increasing practice of studying our personal human activities through the recovery and analysis of


Heads Up!

I don’t know what I should do anymore.

I write a safety article every year during the Nine Days, and everyone thinks, “Okay, so I won’t do anything dangerous.” But things can still happen, c”v, even if you’re doing something innocent. What can be more innocent than attending a birthday party,


Safe Sitting

Candles burn, tables turn, butter-makers churn and students learn. But where does all of this activity take place? Candles burn on birthday cakes and menorahs and, for workaholics, at both ends. Tables turn in business, spy novels and when a caterer is asked to rearrange a ballroom. Butter-makers churn in their shops and, ironically, the higher the customer churn, the


Bronx-Westchester Eyes Future Without Engel

 Based on in-person voting, 32-year congressional veteran Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) appeared to be trailing his challenger Jamal Bowman by more than 10,000 votes in New York’s 16th district. The district currently includes River­dale, sections of the North Bronx and all of Southern Westchester. At press time, record numbers


Restaurants Serving Meat During the Nine Days


Owners of meat restaurants face a dilemma during the Nine Days. If they refuse to serve meat items during this time, marginally observant and non observant Jewish customers will likely choose to eat non-kosher meat elsewhere. The question is whether halacha permits store owners to serve


‘Und Vos Zogt Gott?’

Parshat Masei

This week’s haftarah, the second of the three pre-Tisha B’Av haftarot of condemnation, is taken from the second perek of Sefer Yirmiyahu and is continuation of last week’s reading that closed with the first four pesukim of this second chapter. As the navi’s mission was to censure


The Multiple Meanings of the Word ‘Netzach’

The precise meaning of this word is very relevant to us daily. In the prayer “Vayivarech David” we assign to God “ha-gedulah, ve-ha-gevurah, ve-ha-tiferet, ve-ha-neitzach, ve-ha-hod.” This is a verse in Divrei Ha-yamim (I, 29:11). We need to determine what the root נצח means here. In Tanach it usually has the meaning


Highland Park Councilwoman Susie Welkovits Remembered as a ‘Proud Jew’

Highland Park Councilwoman Susie Welkovits’s strong sense of commitment to standing up for what is right and for the Jewish community was forged growing up as the daughter of Holocaust survivors who fled Hungary in 1956 following the failed revolution against Soviet oppression.

“She was such


The Humiliation of Applying for Yeshiva Tuition Assistance

Like many parents who’ve been put through the financial/emotional/physical wringer over the past few months, my husband and I found ourselves applying for financial aid from our daughter’s yeshiva day school for the first time. I am still reeling from the shock and hurt: I have never encountered a more humiliating, demeaning, invasive


Chasidic-Sephardic Encounters in 20th-Century Eastern Europe

Rabbi Shlomo Baruch Halevi Prager (1887-1943) was the Ashkenazi chasidic rav of Bačko Petrovo Selo in Serbia (his father, Yaakov, was the rabbi of the nearby Serbian village of Ada). He was apparently somewhat unique among the Hungarian charedim in that he engaged in “kiruv” activities. He would travel to remote