Martin Luther King Jr., University of Carol, and Carnegie Coleslaw

Lois Caplan

MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. was not the only one with a dream. In the early 1960s the St. Louis Section, National Council of Jewish Women dreamed of building a facility for low income seniors and, voila, the Delcrest, a 10-story, 144 apartment complex was constructed. I was one of those dreamers. Primarily the building was to provide protected living, but over the years the project has doubled in size and quintupled in services and is today Crown Center for Senior Living. Not only is it a wonderful residence, it is also a community center for seniors in the Delmar-McKnight University City neighborhood.

Last week I received a note from Nikki Goldstein, executive director of Crown Center, in which she said “I’ve enclosed a letter from a resident.  I thought you should see…your vision still lives.”  The resident had moved into Crown Center a year ago, and his letter was a beautiful message of thanks and gratitude for such an affordable, comfortable and congenial home.  “Dear Nikki,” he wrote, “you and the Board members have created the finest place in the world to live.  If someone offered to give me a mansion today, I would turn and run in the opposite direction, all the way back to Crown Center.” This from a person who worried as his savings had dwindled and who now enjoys life with no concerns about the future. “My budget no longer is in question. The future is guaranteed.  I am at peace.” Would you call this a dream come true for all of us who helped build Crown Center?

Beth Shalom Cemetery ad

WELCOME TO PATCH, the new media kid on the block. Patch is an online, neighborhood newspaper edited by Jim Baer who you might remember as a writer and a KMOX announcer for amateur athletics and prep sports. Baer explained that Patch is a project of AOL. A year ago, there were only 30 Patches across America; today there are 780, spreading like a prairie fire from coast to coast. In the St. Louis area alone, 24 Patches each cover strictly local news, including sports, government, education, business, dining and the arts.   Baer’s bailiwick is the Ladue-Frontenac Patch. “Patch has a vision to cover local news intensely, and give the public a news source they’ve wanted and needed for years,” Baer explained. ” We do five volunteer days in our community.  I personally spent a day with wonderful children at the Lemay Child and Development Center.” Baer and his wife are members of United Hebrew Congregation. He has been writing or doing interesting things like running the Bowling Hall of Fame for 40 years. To see for yourself, go to

FOR 12 MONTHS, from October 2009 through September 2010, Dorothy Firestone wrote monthly Pantry Plus pamphlets for the Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry. She provided a year’s worth of recipes based on what was in the bags the Pantry gave away that month.  To this day she does not know if anyone used any of the recipes. “They might have loved or hated them or never tried any of them. I do not know,” she lamented.  I do know that included in those recipes was Firestone’s delicious coleslaw, which she calls “Almost Carnegie Coleslaw.” So I will share the recipe with you and tell you that it is a real winner. It’s salt-free, too.

Dorothy Firestone’s ‘Almost Carnegie Coleslaw’

1 to 1 ½ pounds thinly shredded or sliced cabbage (if using bagged shredded cabbage, rinse it under cold water and set aside to drain.

1 medium carrot, peeled and grated

1 small onion minced

¼ cup oil, preferably canola

½ cup sugar

2/3 cup cider vinegar

1 teaspoon celery seed

1 teaspoon dry mustard                                                                                               

Diced yellow or green bell pepper and minced parsley, optional.

Combine the grated cabbage, carrot and onion in a metal bowl.  Combine the oil, sugar, vinegar, celery seed and mustard in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Pour over cabbage and mix well.  Add optional bell pepper and parsley. Refrigerate. This slaw will stay nicely in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks.  Serves 6-8.


CAROL SHAPIRO’S UNIVERSITY OF CAROL resumes on January 12 for eight consecutive Wednesdays beginning with “Women Photographers of the 20th Century” and closing with “Peter Paul Rubens” (two lectures). In between she will lecture on Frida Kahlo, Chuck Close, David Hockney and two lectures on the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice. Note, please, that Shapiro is giving only one class a week on Wednesdays.

To reserve your place call her at 314-567-6553.