Jewish Friendship Group news

Marilyn Anthony

The dining room at the Vistas was overflowing for the recent Chanukah Party. Larry Stillman wrote an even funnier presentation than last year – hard as that is to believe. Songs were sung, stories were told to the twinkling candles while a most delicious meal was enjoyed by all. A high stakes (nickels!) Dreidel game took place at one table with the winnings going to the Tucson Jewish Museum. Luckily no one called the patrol to report us for gambling on-site.

2018 is around the corner and the JFG Board has arranged monthly activities for our members’ enjoyment. We have a dinner scheduled on January 30 at the redone Mesquite Grill, a full Potluck with our yearly Trivia Competition on February 20 and, due to many requests, we have planned a Dinner Dance in the HOA Two Ballroom for March 17. Polish up your dancing shoes! Of course, there will be our annual JFG Seder on April 2. Consider yourselves booked!

Our recent Ladies’ Coffee at the home of Sharon Triester co-hosted by Barbara Kessler was a lovely morning of delicious food and catching up with friends. Our thanks to Sharon and Barbara for having us over and for totally ignoring my constant exhortations that nothing hot or especially plentiful is required at these coffees. The latkes were a real treat!

Thanks to all the ladies who signed up to host in the coming months so that this activity will continue. We now have hosts until April but require hosts to sign up for May onwards. To host a Ladies’ Coffee, kindly contact Leslie Nagy at

The December meeting of the Co-Ed Book Club discussed All Who Go Do Not Return by Shulem Deen, a most interesting autobiography of an ultra-orthodox Hasid who totally lost his faith. Having grown up in an unaffiliated Hasidic family, Shulem himself chose to join an insular sect who spoke only Yiddish and kept themselves totally separate from all outside influences. Deen studied, lived, married and had five children within the community before becoming a heretic in discovering the outside world. The book led to a spirited discussion on those Hasidic sects who live apart from the contemporary world, how they use the system to live, how they view non-members of their group and how rigid a life they impose on their members. The meeting had to be called to a close as we could have gone on talking about this all afternoon.

On January 11 the Book Club meets at the home of Sam Horowitz to examine Heretics by Leonardo Padura, a sweeping detective novel of art theft, anti-Semitism, contemporary Cuba and crime from a renowned Cuban author. Please RSVP to Sam by January 4. Come at 11:45 a.m. for a snack and conversation. Bring a bag lunch if you want.

JFG dues for 2018 of $18 per person are due in January. Please send your check to Laurie Colen, 63845 E. Orangewood Lane.

For further information about the JFG, please contact Bill Kaplan at