Book Fest plans girl’s night out

By Lois Caplan

EVER SINCE I LEARNED THAT DELIA EPHRON IS COMING TO ST. LOUIS, I have been dying to tell you about her visit. On Wednesday evening, May 2 at Macy’s West County Mall you can share a great girls’ night out with her. If her name does not grab you, let me refresh your memory of Ephron, an award winning author and screenwriter (“You’ve Got Mail,” “Hanging Up” and soon to be released “The Lion is In”). She is also the sister of writer Nora Ephron; the two collaborated on the play, “Love, Loss and What I Wore,” which has been lighting up Off-Broadway in New York for the past two years.

Ephron will be joined by Diane Kline and Cary Goldwasser, creators of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch column, “Quirk Out!” for a night of “fun, freedom and fancy.” There will be makeovers, modelling, gift bags prize drawings and refreshments starting at 6:30, with the author presentation at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $15 or free if you have St. Louis Jewish Book Festival Series Plus tickets.

Another Book Festival program, this one featuring the great and beloved Neil Sedaka on Wednesday, May 16, is evidence that the festival is no longer just a fall event. The Sedaka event, which is billed as an “Evening of Conversation, Books and Song,” will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Staenberg Family Complex, 2 Millstone Campus Drive.  Sedaka will be signing his children’s books, which come complete with musical CDs, and will take questions from the audience.

For reservations and more information about these two delightful events, call 314-442-3299 or visit .

THE HEARTFELT BEAUTY EVENT on May 18, 19 and 20 to benefit the Children’s Heart Association sounds like three days of beauty, courtesy of Dillard’s stores and Dior. Dillard’s is taking the whole program very seriously. For example, there will be free spa treatments and a free New Look Spring Makeover and 10 percent off all Dior products as well as refreshments. 

Why all the fuss over fundraising for the Children’s Heart Foundation? Because it raises money to fund important research for the best methods of diagnosis treatment and prevention of congenital heart defects, the No. 1 most common birth defect in the United States and around the world.

Roberta Cohen, Fundraising and Corporate Support Chair for the Children’s Heart Foundation, asked me to also tell you about a related fundraiser at Busch Stadium on Saturday, May 26th that will benefit both the Children’s and Adult Congenital Heart Association.  For more information on this baseball event call 314-570-5020.

NEW KID SUPPORT is a program for children coping with cancer in the family.  Created and sponsored by the Cancer Support Community of Greater St. Louis (formerly The Wellness Community) it is described as “an evidence-based 10-week peer support program for those ages 5 to 16 who have a parent, grandparent or any other family member or friend with cancer.” This program is led by licensed therapists experienced in working with children affected by cancer in the family, helping them with communication skills, relaxation techniques and to identify feelings that will be helpful to them. The program launches in May. There is a required parent orientation on Monday, April 23 at 6 p.m.  Interested? Call the coordinator, Kimberly Lawson at 314-238-2003, x247.

SUPER KUDOS TO THE STUDENTS OF THE LADUE SCHOOL DISTRICT who had a fantastically successful “ Fill the Bus” campaign to help fill the shelves of the Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry and the St. Patrick Center for the Homeless. This year’s contribution totaled a whopping 6,349 canned goods and non-perishable food, almost doubling contributions from last year’s campaign. An effort of the entire school district, the kids, the faculty and the parents learned the joy of stuffing a school bus full of nourishing food while replenishing the depleted shelves.