What TO DO?
The Jewish Hour
His voice might make you think of a rock 'n' roll
disc jockey, but Chasidic Rabbi Herschel Finman is
actually the host of the Jewish
Hour, a multifaceted, musical,
news, talk show.
After nearly a year hiatus,
Rabbi Finman has brought the
Jewish Hour back to WPON
radio (AM-1460) and live on the
Internet at wpon.com .
The show, which runs from 3-
4 p.m. on Fridays, started back
on the air on Oct. 6.
"It is a variety show featuring Jewish music of all
kinds, from Theodore Bikel and Avraham Freed to
Old World Klezmer and New Age funk-Jewish style
said Rabbi Finman, who runs area adult education
programs and seminars. Shows also relay news
from Israel "from Israeli sources typically unavail-
Rabbi Steven Rubenstein of Congregation Beth Ahm
will lead a three-part learning series, "Exploring Our
Identity As Conservative Jews,"
at 10 a.m., following 9 a.m.
minyan, on Sundays, Oct. 22,
Nov. 19 and Dec. 17 at Beth
Ahm, 5075 W. Maple Road, West
Bloomfield. The classes are free
and open to the community.
The series is in response
to the difficulty many
Conservative Jews find in
explaining what it means to
be a Conservative Jew today. Recent events in the
Conservative movement also prompted the series: the
selection of Dr. Arnie Eisen, a non-rabbi, as chancellor
of the Jewish Theological Seminary; debate within the
able in the U.S.," he said.
"It's a packed hour full of inspirational material,
important information and entertainment. We also
always include words of inspiration culled from the
week's Torah portion or related to the Jewish calendar
— or a Chasidic story"
Each week a topical interview is aired. "It is always
something to do with the Jewish community or
something political that affects Jews in our area,"
he said. "Even commercials are about products and
stores and people who benefit the Jewish community."
Rabbi Finman's guest this Friday, Oct. 20, will be
clinical social worker Zalman Lachman, who will
speak on Project Y.E.S. of Agudath Israel of America,
which is being launched in the Detroit area.
As Rabbi Finman sings the words of musician-
comedian Mickey Katz's old tune, "How Much is that
Pickle in the Window?" he adds, "And during our
musical portion, we take requests:'
movement about ordaining gays as rabbis; and locally,
reports from the recent Detroit Jewish population
study show fewer Jews identifying as Conservative.
Each session will discuss an article or writing
about Conservative Judaism as a starting point.
The Oct. 22 will deal with "Conservative Judaism or
Covenantal Judaism? Is It Time for A Name Change?"
On Nov. 19, the topic is "How Do We Make Decisions
About Jewish Law?" On Dec. 17 will be "The Search
for a New Aggadah."
In advance of the first session, Rabbi Rubenstein
is offering those who register a CD of Rabbi David
Wolpe's recent speech advocating the name change
to "Covenantal Judaism',' which should be heard in
To register, contact Rabbi Rubenstein at (248) 851-
6880 ext. 17 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Keri Guten Cohen, story development editor
Gold selected the local chapter of
David Adom as the beneficiary of
Allie Gold, a junior at West Bloomfield
So far, she's raised more than
High School, was on Federation's Teen
and family friends.
Mission 2006, which returned early
this summer because of the war with
Lebanon. At a mission reunion, Gold
saw flyers asking the teens to help
raise money for Federation's Israel
To increase her contributions, she'll
Allie Gold, right, with
your deposit receipts from area
"I thought it'd be cool to do some-
Israeli counselor Anat
stores or will pick up your bottles
thing on my own as well as through
them for the deposit.
Federation," she said. "My mom and I came up with
benefit — raising money
a bottle drive. I've helped with other fundraisers, but
too," says Gold, daughter of
this is the first one I did myself, to an organization of
Bloomfield. Reach Gold
my choosing. It means more that I started it and put
my mind to it."
- Keri Guten Cohen, story development editor
The Oct. 21 reunion for Vernor School alumni turn-
ing 55 this year has been canceled. The Classes of
1966 and 1967 last met five years ago.
"Although the initial response to holding the
reunion again was high and enthusiastic, the num-
ber needed for the restaurant was not obtained,"
said reunion organizer Carol Karbal Blender of
Renee M. Yarzig is a chess fanatic,
having learned the game as a child
playing with her parents' Holocaust
survivor friends in Southfield. Now
she lives in New York City, runs
Pegasus Media Productions and
teaches after-school and senior citi-
zen chess classes.
She also founded "Cross-
Generation Chess," a program blend-
ing chess play between generations
and classical music that she started
nearly five years ago at the Jewish
Community Center in Manhattan.
- Shelli Liebman Dorfman, staff writer
Bottles Aid Israel
Vernor Reunion Called Off
The northwest Detroit school will not be open for
tours on Saturday, Oct. 21. If anyone knows Vernor
alumni planning to tour the school that day even
if they weren't attending the evening dinner, please
notify them of the cancellation, Blender empha-
- Robert A. Sklar, editor
Renee Yarzig concentrates on
her chess game with a young
opponent in New York City.
She also worked to reopen the Chess
and Checkers House in Central Park
after it had been closed for 10 years.
And she organizes an annual youth
chess tournament with the Central
"Torah teaches everyone to respect
all mankind — chess is the perfect
social equalizer," says Yarzig, who
sees chess as a great way to blend
people of all races, ages, religions,
nationalities and economic levels.
"It only matters how well you play
Now Yarzig is taking her program
national. She'll host a chess match
from noon-3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 26,
in the front lobby of the JCC in West
Bloomfield. She's hoping to attract
senior citizens who will challenge
and be challenged by children, K-12,
playing numerous chess games.
This is not a rated tournament,
Yarzig says, but rather an exchange
of chess plays, enabling both genera-
tions to communicate and play chess
while listening to live classical music
performed by award-winning jazz
pianist Kasaun Henry, 29, a chess
champion from Harlem. A compli-
mentary lunch will be served.
The Cross-Generation Chess
Program is free and open to all. To
register, contact Yarzig at (917) 822-
3141, fax (212) 338-5350, e-mail to
email@example.com or go to
- Keri Guten Cohen,
story development editor
Looking for something fun
to do this weekend? Need an
uplifting lecture or a place to
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October 19 2006