ChaiLights calendar: March 14-30

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Friday, March 14

Covenant Place Cabaret: Pianist Paul Hertenstein will perform at 1 p.m. in Covenant II’s Milford and Lee Bohm Social Hall, 8 Millstone Campus Drive. Free and open to the public; refreshments are provided. RSVP to 314-432-1610.


Saturday, March 15 

Crown trip to Botanical Garden: Join Crown Center for a 9:30 a.m. bus trip to the Missouri Botanical Gardens and explore the 2014 Orchid Show. On Saturday mornings admission is free but the orchid show is $5; bus fare is $2. Call 314-991-2055 to RSVP.

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Vashti’s Cabaret at Shaare Emeth: Congregation Shaare Emeth presents Vashti’s Cabaret at 7:30 p.m. at Congregation Shaare Emeth, 11645 Ladue Road. The cabaret-style Purim shpiel, Megillah reading and havdalah will feature authentic cabaret performers and the Not-So-Ready-For-Purim Players. For adults ages 13 and up. Drink and snacks provided. Free, but RSVP to Shaare Emeth at 314-569-0010. For more information, call or visit shaare-emeth.org/purim.

Purim in the City with Moishe House: Join Moishe House St. Louis, Next Dor STL, JGrads, Young Adults of Bais Abe, Makor and Q-Jews as they take on a few bars and read the Megillah. The group will meet at 8 p.m. at Next Dor for drinks and a backdrop will be set up for photos. At 8:30, the group will head to Central Reform Congregation for the Megillah reading. At 9:15, they will head to Llewellyn’s, followed by Dressel’s at 10, SubZero at 10:40 and then Brennan’s from 11:30 to 1:30 for an optional Megillah reading and a complimentary drink. Check Moishe House’s Facebook page for updates on the schedule for the evening.


Sunday, March 16 

NHBZ’s PurimPalooza: Nusach Hari B’nai Zion will hold PurimPalooza, an exotic Purim Seudah, with feasting and fun with a Persian masquerade theme, at 6 p.m. (mincah at 5:45). Enjoy authentic Persian cuisine with chef Reven Ben Chabib as well as a costume contest, music, jokes and creative kids activities. Adults are $15, $8 per child, with a $45 maximum cost per family. RSVP at 314-991-2100 Ext. 2. The shul is located at 650 N. Pine Road in Olivette.

Bais Abe/Torah MiTzion Purim Seudah: At 5 p.m. celebrate Purim with friends, food, wine, games, face-painting, trivia, live-music and more at Bais Abraham Congregation, 6910 Delmar Boulevard. The cost for the event (includes dinner) is $12 is for adults and $9 for children age 3 to 12 (under age 3 are free). RSVP required  to [email protected] 

Purim Carnival at Epstein: The community is invited to a Purim Carnival at Epstein Hebrew Academy, 1138 N. Warson Road, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Enjoy games, a bounce house, face painting, a photo booth, puppy petting and more.  Tickets are 25 cents (activities cost 1-2 tickets), with an all-day pass for $5 per child (under 10 years) or $10 per child (10 and up) — with a household maximum of $40. Food and refreshments will be available for purchase.

Comedy night at ‘Purim Night Live’: The Jewish Community Center’s Helene Mirowitz Center of Jewish Community Life is coordinating the inaugural “Purim Night Live,” an  evening of Jewish comedy, in search of the best joke-teller in St. Louis. The event takes place at 7 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center Staenberg Family Complex, 2 Millstone Campus Drive; free and open to the public (ages 18 and older).  The cast of the New Jewish Theatre’s upcoming production, “Old Jews Telling Jokes,” will make a cameo appearance and  a rabbinic panel of judges from sponsoring congregations will include Rabbi Andrea Goldstein from Shaare Emeth, Rabbi Ari Kaiman from B’nai Amoona, Rabbi Brigitte Rosenberg from United Hebrew and Rabbi Lane Steinger from Shir Hadash Reconstructionist Community. Participants are invited to bring their funniest “clean” joke or two to share. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top winners. RSVPs required by March 12 to Rabbi Horwitz at [email protected] 

Reading of the Megillah at Covenant: Fulfill the mitzvah of hearing the Megillah read on Purim — Larry Gornish will read the Megillah in its entirety in Hebrew. Enjoy homemade hamantaschen following the reading. The reading will begins at 11 a.m. in Covenant I’s Royal Dining Room, 10 Millstone Campus Drive. Free and open to the public. Bring your own grogger

Annual family Purim shpiel, carnival: Don a costume for Purim and join the feasting and merriment at the Annual Family Purim Schpiel and Carnival at Congregation Shaare Emeth, 11645 Ladue Road. The Purim shpiel begins at 10:30 a.m. followed by the Purim carnival, with a special preschool area, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will feature a bounce house, balloon animals, face painting and carnival games for all ages (wristbands for unlimited play $15), as well as hamantaschen, hot dogs, hamburgers, veggie burgers and nachos (cash only). Make craft bags for the students of Oak Hill Elementary School. Take bags of goodies to homebound congregants. Bring a can of food to donate to the food pantry. For more information, call Shaare Emeth at 314-569-0010 or visit shaare-emeth.org/purim.

St. Louis Women’s Megillah Reading: Join other local women for an expert and spirited reading of Megillat Esther by and for women, using the Megillah written by the St. Louis Megillah Writing Project at the home of Bonnie Goldmeier, 219 Topton Way in Clayton. The group will facilitate fulfilling the mitzvah of matanot l’evyonim by collecting funds and making sure they are distributed on Purim day (donations will be in memory of Merle Hartstein). Dvar halacha is at 9:30 a.m. Reading begins 9:35 a.m. sharp. 

Purim celebration at Aish HaTorah: Aish HaTorah will hold a Purim celebration for all ages from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Enjoy Haman-led horse rides, an original Megillah reading, festive brunch, costume party and hamantaschen. The festivities will take place at the Aish Firehouse, 457 N. Woods Mill Road in Chesterfield. The cost is $8 for adults, $5 for children (family maximum cost of $25); no charge for children in Aish Hebrew School. RSVP to 314-862-2474 or [email protected] 

Jewish War Veterans Post 644 March meeting: The March Jewish War Veterans Post 644 meeting will be held at 10 a.m. at the Jewish Federation Kopolow Building, 12 Millstone Campus Drive. The Ladies Auxiliary meets at the same location/time. Spouses and family members are welcome to attend. Active duty and reserve veterans are also welcome. Bagels and coffee will be served. For more information, contact Commander Dennis Cohen 636-532-7172.


Monday, March 17

Holocaust Survivors and Descendants meeting: The St. Louis Holocaust Survivors and Descendants group holds its monthly meeting at 3 p.m. at the Jewish Federation Kopolow Building. All survivors, their children, grandchildren and descendants of victims of the Holocaust are welcome. The group will meet Cultural Leadership participants from Clayton High School, who have been traveling and studying about discrimination. Those needing a ride may call David Halpern at 314-583-6392.Meetings are free and programs vary from month to month. For more information, call Sofia Kent, 314-878-8405 or [email protected]; or Liz Lippa, 314-802-7750 or [email protected] 

Purim Party at Covenant Place: Join residents of Covenant Place, 10 Millstone Campus Drive, in celebration of Purim during dinner at 5 p.m. Make a crown and/or enter the Queen Esther contest at 3:30 p.m. Dinner will be served at 5 p.m. The menu will include roast turkey and gravy, whole wheat bread stuffing, roasted vegetables, chilled salad greens with cranberries apples and pecans, parker house rolls and hamantaschen. Open to the community. For reservations call 314-442-3149.  The suggested donation per meal is $3.50 for 60+, and $8 per meal 59 and under.


Tuesday, March 18

Torah Study at Covenant Place with Rabbi Gertzulin of the Cedars: Rabbi Yaakov Gertzulin, director of religious affairs at the Cedars of Town and Country, will lead a discussion of the week’s Torah portion at 10 a.m. in the Harmony Room of Covenant House I, 10 Millstone Campus Drive.  Free and open to all but RSVPs requested to 314-432-1610.

Covenant Place OASIS discussion hour: Enjoy meaningful conversations in topic-based discussions led by an OASIS peer. Group meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at 1 p.m. in the Friendship Room of Covenant House II, 8 Millstone Campus Drive. Free and open to the community.

Bingo and luncheon at NHBZ: The Nusach Hari B’Nai Zion Sisterhood will hold its membership luncheon and bingo event at noon in NHBZ’s auditorium. Lunch is free with “paid-up” memberships of $12 and guests are welcome with a $7 donation. Open to the community; RSVP to Rachael at 314-395-6017.


Wednesday, March 19

Alzheimer’s Caregiver Support Group: The Alzheimer’s Association Caregiver Support Group will meet from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Adult Day Center at the JCC’s Staenberg Family Complex. Monthly support groups are sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association in collaboration with the JCC and led by a trained facilitator. Care for family members may be available but must be made by advance registration. Contact caseworker Elaine Most for more information: 314-442-3261.


Starting March 19 & 25

Mussar Institute classes to be offered through CAJE

Central Agency for Jewish Education will offer two sessions beginning this month of a 14-week introductory course on Mussar, a millennium-old Jewish tradition of personal spiritual development based in Torah. Sessions of “A Season of Mussar I” will be led by CAJE educator and certified Mussar facilitator Cyndee Levy and will utilize course materials developed for the modern learner by Alan Morinis of the Mussar Institute. The first session will be offered from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesdays beginning March 19; the second will held from 9:30 to 11 a.m. Tuesday mornings beginning March 25. Both classes will be held at CAJE, inside the Jewish Federation Kopolow Building, 12 Millstone Campus Drive. Tuition for each class is $136, and scholarships are available. To register or for more information, contact Levy at 314-442-3754 or [email protected], or visit cajestl.org.


Thursday, March 20 

Stylin’ at the Resale Shop: The Resale Shop is hosting author and NCJW volunteer Nancy Nix-Rice for “What You Don’t Know You Don’t Know about Dressing Well” from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Resale Shop, 295 N. Lindbergh Boulevard in Creve Coeur.  She will debunk the “must-have’s” in fashion and explain how to showcase a woman’s own unique beauty. Nix-Rice’s book “Looking Good Everyday” will be available for sale and signing. Enjoy light refreshments and 25 percent off  purchases from the Resale Shop. RSVP to [email protected] or 314-993-5181. 

Covenant Support Council fundraiser: Join residents of Covenant Place, 10 Millstone Campus Drive, and enter to win raffle prizes during its ‘The Choice is Yours’  Support Council fundraiser. Ticket purchases will benefit Covenant Place’s Support Council fund. The menu will include baked meatloaf, garlic mashed potatoes, roasted eggplant and tomatoes, a hot corn muffin and a fresh pear.  Dinner starts at 5p.m and The Klassy Kickers will perform at 6.  Open to the community. To RSVP, call 314-442-3149. Suggested donation per meal is $3.50 for 60+ and $8 per meal 59 and under.

Exploring ‘Broadway treasures’: From “Guys and Dolls” and “The Music Man” to “Fiddler on the Roof,” join a musical tour of Frank Loesser, Jerry Bach, and Meredith Willson during a St. Louis NORC event facilitated by Robert Schwartz. The event takes place from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Gathering Place at the JCC’s Staenberg Family Complex. Second in a series of four. Free and open to the community but RSVPs required to Laura at 314-442-3255. 


Starting Thursday, March 20 

NJT to stage Arthur Miller’s ‘The Price’: The New Jewish Theatre’s 2013-14 season continues with Arthur Miller’s classic play “The Price,” which runs March 20 through April 6 in the Jewish Community Center’s Wool Studio Theatre, 2 Millstone Campus Drive. Tickets are $37 to $41 and are available at newjewishtheatre.org or from the NJT box office at 314-442-3283. 


Friday, March 21

Film at Covenant Place: Covenant Place will screen the film “Robot & Frank” at 1 p.m. at Covenant II’s Helene Mirowitz Theatre, 8 Millstone Campus Drive. The film stars Frank Langella, Susan Sarandon, Peter Sarsgaard and Liv Tyler and is rated PG-13.  Free and open to the community; refreshments provided. 

Third Friday at Moishe House: Join Moishe House and Birthright Next at 7:30 p.m. for Third Friday. Enjoy food, friends, and maybe even a little March Madness. Extra food/drinks are always welcome. For more information, email [email protected]


Saturday, March 22

Lunch & Learn at Bais Abe: Washington University Professor of Jewish History and Thought Hillel Kieval will speak on “Birkat Haminim: Why is There a Prayer About Heretics in the Shemonah Esrei? And Who Are (Were) the Heretics?” during a Shabbat Lunch & Learn. Lunch will follow davening; Kieval will then speak. Free and open to the community. Bais Abraham is located at 6910 Delmar Boulevard in University City. For more information, call 314-721-3030 or www.baisabe.com.


Sunday, March 23

Lecture by archivist from U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum: Artwork created by child Holocaust survivors will be the focus of a public lecture at 1 p.m. Sunday, March 23 at the St. Louis Holocaust Museum in the Jewish Federation Kopolow Building, 12 Millstone Campus Drive. “Children’s Drawings of Weir Courtney,” will feature Rebecca Erbelding, archivist at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, who will discuss this extraordinary cache of post-war drawings.  A light reception will follow the program. This lecture, co-sponsored by the USHMM and the Holocaust Museum, is free and open to the public. RSVP by March 20 to Jed Silberg in the USHMM’s Midwest Regional Office at [email protected] or 847-433-8099. For information, call Silberg or contact Dan Reich of the Holocaust Museum at 314-442-3714 or [email protected]


Tuesday, March 26

Moishe House Twisted Tuesday: Join Moishe residents from 5 to 7 p.m. at Buffalo Wild Wings, 1210 Strassner Drive in Brentwood. The group will meet at the bar. For more information, email [email protected]


Wednesday, March 26

Crown Center Yiddish Group: Join Crown Center’s Yiddish Group at 1:30 p.m. if you enjoy speaking, listening or learning Yiddish. The group includes residents of Crown Center and participants from the community and is facilitated by Thelma Edelstein and David Levine. Call 314-991-2055 for more information. Crown Center is located at 8350 Delcrest Drive. 

Great voices of opera: Listen to original recordings and view antique phonographs and slides of performers with presenter Eliot Katz, during a St. Louis NORC event at 1 p.m. at the Jewish Federation Kopolow Building. Open to the community but RSVP required to Laura at 314-442-3255.


Thursday, March 27 

Crown Center trip to see documentary: Crown Center will lead a trip to see “Waking in Oak Creek,” showing at the Missouri History Museum at 6:15 p.m. The documentary was produced by Patrice O’Neill, daughter of a Crown Center resident. The 30-minute film documents the courageous police response and powerful community actions that took place in the aftermath of the hate crime shootings at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in 2012. The museum will facilitate a discussion following the film. The screening is free, but the bus fare is $2. Call 314-991-2055 to RSVP. 

Madness with Moishe House: Join Moishe House at 8 p.m. to watch the South and West NCAA basketball regionals. The games will be on at Moishe House and some snacks will be served. For more information, email [email protected]

Exploring ’Broadway Treasures’: Robert Schwartz will present “Broadway Treasures” from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Gathering Place at the Jewish Community Center Staenberg Family Complex, 2 Millstone Campus Drive. The St. Louis NORC presentation will include music, discussion, anecdotes and singing. Free and open to the community but RSVPs required to Laura at 314-442-3255.


Friday, March 28

Multi-Generational Shabbat Service: Join Crown Center at 6 p.m. as members of The Shabbat Service Group community volunteers and BBYO chapter Esperanto AZA #2486 join with the Crown residents to pray, learn and have fun. Open to the community; refreshments will be served.  Call 314-991-2055 to RSVP. 


Saturday, March 29  

Awareness Shabbat at B’nai Amoona: Congregation B’nai Amoona’s Social Action Committee will hold a volunteer recognition and awareness shabbat on the congregation’s interfaith activities. Rabbi Carnie Shalom Rose has been presenting lectures following some Shabbat services on Maimonides. Brigham Young University’s Neal A. Maxwell Institutes for Religious Scholarship and the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints have printed volumes on the writings of Maimonides. During the Volunteer Recognition and Awareness Shabbat, church member Mary Pedersen will present a set of the books for B’nai Amoona’s Paul and Betty Mendelson Library. For more information call 314-576-9990. 


Sunday, March 30

Bais Abraham to celebrate 120th anniversary with gala event: For related story, see Editor Ellen Futterman’s ‘News & Schmooze’ column this week.

JCC plans Jewish Drum Circle event: Join the first St. Louis Jewish Drum Circle, led by Percussionist Robert ‘Honi’ Fishbone from Central Reform Congregation, from 4 to 6 p.m. at the JCC’s Staenberg Family Complex’s Arts & Education Building. Participants will play drums as one and tune in to the spirit and essence of what it is to be Jewish — and what it is to be a human being.  Fishbone has facilitated drum circles for more than 20 years for all types of groups and will bring his experience and his joy of drumming to this session. Participants will learn basic playing techniques on a variety of instruments, including African-style drums (participants may bring their own drum if they have one — or an African-style drum will be provided). This session is limited to 20 participants, ages 16 and up, on a first-come basis. Contact Diane Maier at [email protected] 314-442-3190 to RSVP; $10 fee. Coordinated by the JCC’s Helene Mirowitz Center of Jewish Community Life.

Kol Rinah plans ‘It Takes A Haggadah to Raise a Jewish Child’: Learn how the traditional four children types of the Passover Haggadah give insight into the behaviors of our children and grandchildren today and may help us build meaningful and positive relationships between adults and children – in our homes, synagogue and especially at  seders. This free educational event, presented by Joyce Olshan and sponsored by Kol Rinah’s Adult Education Committee, takes place at 9:30 a.m. at Kol Rinah, 829 N. Hanley Road. For more information call 314-727-1747 or visit www.kolrinahstl.org.

‘Princess with Pride’ shopping event for women and teens: The St. Louis Kollel “Eishes Chayil” Women’s Division will present its pre-Pesach “Princess with Pride” shopping event for women and teens from 1 to 5 p.m. at Young Israel, 8101 Delmar Boulevard in University City. The Kollel bookstore will feature cookbooks, haggadahs, hot water urns, warmers, matzah covers, bug checkers, kosher lamps, Kiddush cups, foil pans, Pesach-themed toys, kitchen supplies and hostess gifts including handmade mezuzahs by Batya Rich. Other vendors include: Orli’s Store and Devorah Soroka Wig Design, jewelry from LHM Creative Design, Seagreen Expressions and B-Dazzled. Alterations by Odell. There will be a wine tasting and fresh salads from Taste of Jerusalem (with Chinese carryout by Jon Rubin Catering also available). DVDs will help keep children occupied while parents shop. There will be a raffle drawing and a percentage of proceeds benefit the Kollel.  For more information, contact Shoshana Kowalsky at 314-726-6047 or [email protected]

Preschool parents’ workshop & ‘Digital Mensches’ rescheduled to March 30: “The Wonder Years: Celebrating the Mishegas of the Preschool Years” and “Raising Digital Mensches,” community events featuring Sharon Duke Estroff that were cancelled because of the weather on March 2 have been rescheduled for March 30. Estroff, a syndicated columnist and award-winning educator, headlines the workshop. She also wrote “Can I Have a Cell Phone for Hanukkah?” and is a featured parenting and education writer for numerous national publications. For more information, contact Marianne Chervitz: 314-442-3454 or [email protected] 


Ongoing

Classes at Covenant Place: The following classes are free and open to the public.  For information call 314-432-1610.  Covenant Place is located at 8 Millstone Campus Drive in Creve Coeur. Classes take place in Covenant II’s Milford & Lee Bohm Social Hall, unless noted otherwise.

• Wii Bowling every Wednesday at 3 p.m. League play starts Feb. 12. 

• Yiddish Club meets every other Monday at 7 p.m. in the Covenant I Harmony Room.  Group facilitated by David Levine.  All levels welcome.  

• RPI physical therapists lead Tai Chi at 11:15 a.m. on Mondays, and chair aerobics exercises at 11 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

• Larry Glass leads chair yoga at 11 a.m. on Wednesdays and Fridays.

• Music therapist Troy Jones leads bell choir on the second and fourth Thursday of the month. 

• Meet with AW Health Care Registered Nurse to discuss medical questions Tuesdays at 2 p.m. in Covenant’s dining room, 10 Millstone Campus Drive. 

• OASIS ExerStart evening exercise class for adults 50+, 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays; $5 fee for 20-week course (scholarships available).