Summer is here…July 4th is on Monday…and the sun keeps shining! Let’s hope we have one of those legendary beautiful Portland summers! But the mood is dampened when this week alone we hear about terror attacks in Turkey, Israel, and other parts of the world. All while we are about to celebrate our country’s Independence Day. May we continue to be the land of the free and the home of the brave.
I am excited that Ed Tonkin has assumed the role as Chair of the Board of the Jewish Federation. Ed is a committed and passionate leader who is definitely listening and learning. (In the next few months you will have an opportunity to share your thoughts with Ed as he/we listen to the interests/needs/desires of our Jewish community.) In fact, the first thing he wanted to do was meet with the Jewish Federation professional team and the partner agency executive directors and their presidents for their insights and thoughts. In a short time period we have met with over half the agencies – the remaining few we will meet in the next 10 days.
These meetings have been very informative. First of all, Ed is curious about learning more about the current work of each of our partner agencies, as well as their future plans. Our Jewish community is blessed to have such a wide array of programs and services being offered. Moreover, the future plans for these organizations are truly inspiring.
The authenticity and openness in these conversations make me very proud. There is a mutual understanding that we depend on one another to make our Jewish community successful. Ed and I are looking forward to future conversations with the other agency leaders, and to expand our conversations throughout the Jewish community.
Now, with summer upon us, here are a few fun summer activities for you and your family:
Join the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland and the Mittleman Jewish Community Center (MJCC) for a fun night of Hillsboro Hops baseball on Wednesday, July 27 at Ron Tonkin Field. They will be playing the Boise Hawks. We have a whole section reserved for the Jewish community down the right field line. Game starts at 7:05 pm and the gates open at 6:00 pm. Click here to purchase your tickets by July 17 and use the password JEWISHPDX.
In addition, the Jewish Federation and the MJCC are excited to invite community members 50+ (new to Portland or connecting to our community) to a walking tour of Jewish Portland and happy hour led by author and Oregon Jewish Life contributor Polina Olsen. This fun, social, and healthy activity is a wonderful way for people in this age group to meet others of a similar age/life stage. Keep in mind there is a great deal of walking involved. Here is the link for more information and to register. This is a free program (including happy hour), but is limited to only 25 people. Sign up today!
Please mark your calendar for Sunday Parkways coming July 24 for Northeast Portland and August 21 in the Southeast. Come and say hello at the Federation booth. The MJCC and Moishe House will be tabling with us, too!
Finally, know a 6-9 year old boy who may want to be in a Steven Spielberg movie? Here is a casting notice (we did not write it) we just received:
ROLE "EDGARDO" — BOY age 6-9. This is a unique and very challenging part for a truly special boy. The story deals with the complexity of an extremely intelligent and gifted child's situation – his desire to return to his family and the faith of his ancestors, pitted against his ability to learn the Catechism and engage with the Pope on a level far beyond his years. He should appear to be a Jewish Italian child. We are not looking for any kind of Italian accent. Lead role.
STORY LINE "The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara"— Steven Spielberg is making a film about the true story of EDGARDO MORTARA - a 6 year old Jewish boy from Bologna who was reported to have been secretly Baptized by a maid, and was deemed by the Catholic church therefore to be Christian. Pope Pius IX (to be played by Mark Rylance) decreed that the boy could not remain with his Jewish family. He was seized by the Papal State and taken to the Vatican where his indoctrination into Catholicism began. This was a cause célèbre of mid-nineteenth century European politics and the domestic and international outrage against the pontifical state's actions may have contributed to its downfall amid the unification of Italy. This is an incredible story of real historical relevance.
To submit: email email@example.com. Subject line: EDGARDO SUBMISSION / Name of boy, city/state. Body of email: Parents/Guardians contact info (names/phone), boys name/age/d.o.b, city/state of residence, along w/current non retouched photos. If you'd like to include a brief introduction, bio or resume, please do! Please note any related, special, or fun facts so we get to know him!
Who knows, we may have the next great actor from our Jewish community!
Shabbat shalom and have a safe and enjoyable July 4th weekend. And come on out to the Hops game – it will be a lot of fun!