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A look at some of the stories the Jewish Ledger ran in 2013…

 Super Sunday, the largest fundraiser of the Jewish Federation of  Western Massachusetts, was held on Super Bowl Sunday – Feb. 3. Volunteers made calls from both the Springfield JCC and Lander-Grinspoon Academy in Northampton.


Super Sunday, the largest fundraiser of the Jewish Federation of
Western Massachusetts, was held on Super Bowl Sunday – Feb. 3. Volunteers made calls from both the Springfield JCC and Lander-Grinspoon Academy in Northampton.

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Congregation B’nai Torah (CBT) in Longmeadow  welcomed more than 50 teenagers from  Connecticut and Western Massachusetts for the Hebrew High School of New England (HHNE)  Longmeadow Shabbaton on Jan. 4th-6th.  Seventh, eighth and ninth graders from Heritage Academy, Yeshiva Academy, HHNE, Hebrew  Academy, and local public schools shared  Shabbat together on this memorable weekend.  Photo by Tali Edry

Congregation B’nai Torah (CBT) in Longmeadow
welcomed more than 50 teenagers from
Connecticut and Western Massachusetts for the Hebrew High School of New England (HHNE)
Longmeadow Shabbaton on Jan. 4th-6th.
Seventh, eighth and ninth graders from Heritage Academy, Yeshiva Academy, HHNE, Hebrew
Academy, and local public schools shared
Shabbat together on this memorable weekend.
Photo by Tali Edry

The 8th Annual Pioneer Valley Jewish Film Festival, which ran from  April 4-18, featured 20 award-winning international films including  documentaries about faith, art,  and history; action; dramas;  and coming-of-age stories from around the world.

The 8th Annual Pioneer Valley Jewish Film Festival, which ran from
April 4-18, featured 20 award-winning international films including
documentaries about faith, art,
and history; action; dramas;
and coming-of-age stories from around the world.

Temple Beth El in Springfield celebrated its centennial with several events, including a gala concert, “Soul to Soul: Yiddish and African-American Music Meet in a Celebration of Two Cultures.”

Temple Beth El in Springfield celebrated its centennial with several events, including a gala concert, “Soul to Soul: Yiddish and African-American Music Meet in a Celebration of Two Cultures.”

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The middle schoolers of Lubavitcher Yeshiva Academy in Longmeadow traveled to Israel from Feb. 10-20 visiting sites around Israel. Here they can be seen, “Going back in time to the age of the Mishnah”. From left to right, an Israeli medic, Rochel Wolff, Shira Ben Naim, Esti Garfield, Rabbi Chaim Kosofsky; Front: guide Rivkah Magder, Jazz Schmidt, Aviana Schwartz, Bryna Kosofsky, Bryna Etel Kosofsky and Zelda Meyer.

The middle schoolers of Lubavitcher Yeshiva Academy in Longmeadow traveled to Israel from Feb. 10-20 visiting sites around Israel. Here they can be seen, “Going back in time to the age of the Mishnah”. From left to right, an Israeli medic, Rochel Wolff, Shira Ben Naim, Esti Garfield, Rabbi Chaim Kosofsky; Front: guide Rivkah Magder, Jazz Schmidt, Aviana Schwartz, Bryna Kosofsky, Bryna Etel Kosofsky and Zelda Meyer.

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Sue Polansky, a long-time volunteer in the Jewish community and president of the Western New England Region of Hadassah, was honored at the Rose Luncheon in April in Agawam. The event, sponsored by Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts, pays tribute to Jewish women for their outstanding volunteer work.

Sue Polansky, a long-time volunteer in the Jewish community and president of the Western New England Region of Hadassah, was honored at the Rose Luncheon in April in Agawam. The event, sponsored by Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts, pays tribute to Jewish women for their outstanding volunteer work.

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Howard Borer, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts, welcomed more than 400 Jewish educators from 40 states, Canada and Israel to the NewCAJE  Conference at Nichols College in the Central Massachusetts town of Dudley in July.

Howard Borer, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts, welcomed more than 400 Jewish educators from 40 states, Canada and Israel to the NewCAJE
Conference at Nichols College in the Central Massachusetts town of Dudley in July.

Western New England University hosted  a retirement reception in honor of Rabbi Jerome Gurland in early 2013. Rabbi Gurland served Western New England for 31 years, teaching and tending to spiritual life on campus.

Western New England University hosted
a retirement reception in honor of Rabbi Jerome Gurland in early 2013. Rabbi Gurland served Western New England for 31 years, teaching and tending to spiritual life on campus.

Members of the Western Massachusetts Jewish community participated in The Community Trip to Israel in April.  The 131 participants included people from Springfield,  Longmeadow, Northampton, Amherst and the Berkshires.

Members of the Western Massachusetts Jewish community participated in The Community Trip to Israel in April.
The 131 participants included people from Springfield,
Longmeadow, Northampton, Amherst and the Berkshires.


In June, more than 90 percent of members  of Temple Emanuel and Temple Sinai,  the Reform Jewish Synagogues of Worcester,  approved the “integration” of the two entities  form a new congregation,  Temple Emanuel Sinai (TES).  The effort was led by Emily Holdstein  and Carlton Watson, co-chairs of the  Integration Steering Committee.

In June, more than 90 percent of members
of Temple Emanuel and Temple Sinai,
the Reform Jewish Synagogues of Worcester,
approved the “integration” of the two entities
form a new congregation,
Temple Emanuel Sinai (TES).
The effort was led by Emily Holdstein
and Carlton Watson, co-chairs of the
Integration Steering Committee.

In June, the Springfield  Jewish community honored Stu Greene, who  retired as the Springfield JCC’s longtime director of health and physical  education, head coach of the Cudas swim team and head coach of the JCC’s Maccabi team.  The celebration included  a tribute dinner and a day of athletics and outdoor family activities.

In June, the Springfield
Jewish community honored Stu Greene, who
retired as the Springfield JCC’s longtime director of health and physical
education, head coach of the Cudas swim team and head coach of the JCC’s Maccabi team.
The celebration included
a tribute dinner and a day of athletics and outdoor family activities.


The Hadassah New England chapter held its New England HealthFest on Sunday, April 21 in Marlborough. The event featured 40 booths with Health & Wellness programs, exhibitors, sponsors, and partner organizations. Shown here are Carol Goodman Kaufman, founder and chair of the New England HealthFest of Worcester, Robin Shuman, Nancy Falchuk, Evan Falchuk (of Boston) and Ellen Masters of Berkshire Hills.

The Hadassah New England chapter held its New England HealthFest on Sunday, April 21 in Marlborough. The event featured 40 booths with Health & Wellness programs, exhibitors, sponsors, and partner organizations. Shown here are Carol Goodman Kaufman, founder and chair of the New England HealthFest of Worcester, Robin Shuman, Nancy Falchuk, Evan Falchuk (of Boston) and Ellen Masters of Berkshire Hills.

A capacity crowd filled the University of  Massachusetts Club in Boston on June 4, 2013  for UMass Hillel’s “Tribute to Excellence,”  which honored Aaron Lansky, founder of the  Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, and Charlie  Nirenberg, founder of Dairy Mart Convenience Stores and First Merchants Group.

A capacity crowd filled the University of
Massachusetts Club in Boston on June 4, 2013
for UMass Hillel’s “Tribute to Excellence,”
which honored Aaron Lansky, founder of the
Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, and Charlie
Nirenberg, founder of Dairy Mart Convenience Stores and First Merchants Group.


In September, The Woods Museum of Springfield opened the special exhibit, "100 Years of Jewish Life in Springfield." The exhibit features a 12-panel installation and cases of artifacts collected from 15 Jewish organizations in Springfield.

In September, The Woods Museum of Springfield opened the special exhibit, “100 Years of Jewish Life in Springfield.” The exhibit features a 12-panel installation and cases of artifacts collected from 15 Jewish organizations in Springfield.

More than 250 people attended The Torathon:  A Journey into Jewish Life and Learning, presented by the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts Nov. 16. The evening of learning took place at  Congregation Beth Israel in Worcester.

More than 250 people attended The Torathon:
A Journey into Jewish Life and Learning, presented by the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts Nov. 16. The evening of learning took place at
Congregation Beth Israel in Worcester.

More than 350 riders participated in UMass  Hillel’s Annual Ride to Provide held Oct. 6  in Amherst.

More than 350 riders participated in UMass
Hillel’s Annual Ride to Provide held Oct. 6
in Amherst.


More than 100 attended the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Western Massachusetts (JEF) Legacy Book of Life event on Oct. 2 organized to celebrate donors to JEF’s and Harold Grinspoon Foundation’s Create a Jewish Legacy program. The Book of Life, a compilation of donors’ stories, was also  unveiled at the event, held in Holyoke.

More than 100 attended the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Western Massachusetts (JEF) Legacy Book of Life event on Oct. 2 organized to celebrate donors to JEF’s and Harold Grinspoon Foundation’s Create a Jewish Legacy program. The Book of Life, a compilation of donors’ stories, was also
unveiled at the event, held in Holyoke.

A group of 13 from the Greater Worcester area went on a mission to Israel in November. Half of the participants in the educational trip, led by the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts and its executive director Howard Borer, were making their first ever trip to Israel.

A group of 13 from the Greater Worcester area went on a mission to Israel in November. Half of the participants in the educational trip, led by the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts and its executive director Howard Borer, were making their first ever trip to Israel.

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