Honeymooning In Israel

04/12/2016 - 12:21
Special To The Jewish Week

As a rabbi, I’m not usually invited on honeymoon vacations. But in February, I had the opportunity to serve as a Jewish educator for New York City’s first Honeymoon Israel trip. The trip operates in cities around the country, offering couples with at least one Jewish partner a highly subsidized and immersive trip to Israel.

Avram Mlotek

How Yehiel Met Rachel

04/07/2016 - 16:50
Jewish Week Online Columnist

“This is a story how music and dancing can bring people together,” writes the Times of Israel editor. He was referring to the production of Hairspray.  It’s also the story of Rachel Weisblatt and Yehiel Lock.

Rachel Weisblatt and Yehiel Lock. Courtesy of Adina Weisblatt

Musical Magic at Carnegie Hall: The Powerful Lessons of Hazamir

04/07/2016 - 15:32

On a cold and nasty day in New York City last weekend, the hottest ticket in town was for a sold-out performance of Hazamir at Carnegie Hall.

Hazamir at Carnegie Hall. JW/Gerald Skolnik

Who Said Only Adults Get To Have All The Fun?

04/05/2016 - 16:27


"Exploring’s Israel’s outdoor activities and beautiful nature is always a wonderful way to spend the day."


Israel Ministry of Tourism

The Other Córdoba

04/05/2016 - 16:17
Travel Writer

One of my former professors of Spanish literature used to say he was from “the other Córdoba,” since that name evokes, for many people, a city in Andalusia, Spain.

Plaza San Martin, Cordoba.Flickr

Some Morsels Of Insight Into Jewish Life, Culture

04/05/2016 - 16:01
Staff Writer

Over the last decade, author-translator Michael Wex has become the public voice of Yiddish culture — especially for the non-Yiddish-speaking public. A native of Canada’s Alberta province and a longtime native of Toronto, he has written a series of best-selling nonfiction books (in addition to a few novels; he also does songwriting and lecturing) that explain the Jewish language and Jewish way of life in a knowing, usually humorous tone. The nonfiction list includes three books: “Born to Kvetch,” “Just Say Nu” and “How to Be a Mentsh (and Not a Shmuck)”

Wex’s newest book, due out April 12, is about food. “Rhapsody in Schmaltz” (St. Martin’s Press) looks at Jewish culture through a gastronomic lens, covering such subjects as kosher laws and halachic practices, Jewish history and the way Jews are represented in television and film. Wex recently discussed these topics with The Jewish Week. This is an edited transcript. 

Michael Wex’s new book is about “the food that people who speak Yiddish eat.”

Mother Lodes

04/05/2016 - 13:19
Special To The Jewish Week

It may be said that there are two constants in Jewish life: death and laughter. Three actually: death, laughter and tsuris. Oh, and family.

George Robinson

Decades After The Amia Bombing, Still Searching For Justice

04/04/2016 - 12:12

For the third time in the past five years I found myself back this week in Buenos Aires, on business for the Rabbinical Assembly. I came to spend time with my colleagues in the Latin American region of the Rabbinical Assembly, a connection that was created during my presidency of the RA, and also to work with the leadership of the Seminario Rabbinico Latino Americano, the Jewish Theological Seminary's sister seminary in Argentina. The Seminario was founded by the late, great Rabbi Marshal Meyer, groundbreaking rabbi and champion of human rights and social justice in Argentina during the worst years of the Junta. Almost all of my Latin American colleagues studied for the rabbinate at the Seminario.

Courtesy Gerald C. Skolnik

How Leon Charney Outsmarted Sinatra

03/29/2016 - 12:04
Special To The Jewish Week

In 1976 New York Post gossip columnist Earl Wilson was running scared. His tell-all book, “Sinatra: An Unauthorized Biography,” enraged Ol’ Blue Eyes. No surprise there. The volatile crooner, known for his combativeness with photographers and reporters, called the book “false, fictionalized, boring and uninteresting” and instructed his lawyer to sue Wilson for $3 million.

Tzili and Leon Charney. Tim Boxer/JW

A Macedonian Revival

03/29/2016 - 13:39
Travel Writer

The most amazing thing about Skopje’s crumbling medieval fortress is not its stunning view over the city, or its complex history. The most amazing thing is that it survived at all.

The National Archeological Museum of Macedonia in Skopje, part of the city’s makeover. Wikimedia Commons
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