03/22/2011 | | Staff Writer | Lens

In his native Belarus, Mikhail Katz, right, was a champion checkers player and an enthusiastic student of chess.

In Brooklyn, where he migrated 16 years ago, he has continued to work at his vocation.

As head coach at the White Rook Chess Club in the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn, home for generations to waves of émigrés, he teaches 100 students, most of them in chess, most of them, like him, from the former Soviet Union, many of them present or aspiring champions.

03/15/2011 | | Lens

The variety show that toured four local Jewish communities in recent weeks is “Saturday Night Live” meets “Sesame Street,” its adult and children cast members might explain.

But they’d probably explain in Yiddish.

03/08/2011 | | Lens

This is not your bubbe’s gefilte fish. When cookbook author Susie Fishbein took to the grill at a recent cooking demonstration in Brooklyn, the discussion centered on halibut, salmon and grouper, among others.

For the four-part series on seafood, Fishbein set up in the Pomegranate supermarket, and offered simple, quick techniques for a variety of different fish.

03/01/2011 | | Lens

Rabbi Naftali Citron, who grew up as a follower of the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, has fond memories of the singer-composer leading the Havdalah service that marks the end of Shabbat. “He was at the most perfect pitch for the Havdalah,” says Rabbi Citron, who now serves as spiritual leader of The Carlebach Shul on the Upper West Side.

Photo by Michael Datikash

Rabbi Citron, below, says he leads Havdalah in the spirit of his mentor.

02/22/2011 | | Lens

At the Hebrew Home at Riverdale, along the Hudson River in the Bronx, the oldest resident is 104 years old — but she’s not the only centenarian there by a long shot.

A total of 39 men and women who live at the Home are 100 years old or older, and many take part in the full array of the institution’s seniors-centered activities.

For some, it means a traditional pastime like an art class. Marion Rosner, right, offers instruction to three students: from left, Nathan Suss, Beryl Bernet and Frances Hershbaum.

02/15/2011 | | Lens

Cutting hair was a popular Jewish profession in Uzbekistan when Daniel Fuzaylov grew up near Tashkent, capital of the then-Soviet republic, nearly three decades ago. His father, Rafael, was a barber. His grandfather, too.

So Fuzaylov, who came to the United States with his family in 1988, became a barber, learning from his father. They are among the latest émigré groups to pass a trade among themselves, like Korean groceries, Chinese dry cleaners and Greek diners.