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Much planning was needed for the upcoming KCMO Candidates Forum taking place at 6 p.m. May 13 at the University Academy auditorium. During the planning sessions students from University Academy and HBHA divided into groups to undertake such a large-scale event. Each group has worked diligently to ensure their part of the forum goes smoothly.

Filled with incredible enthusiasm and a singular goal to bring Kansas Citians together to better understand the political issues facing Jackson County, Missouri, 116 University Academy and Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy high school students have been working for the last several months on a social justice project that resulted in an upcoming Candidates Forum. 

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We all have a story. The challenge is to tell it in a way that is meaningful to us. And if it becomes a treasured tale for future generations, then we have truly made our mark on history. 

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The Jewish Community has had a mikvah — ritual bath — as part of its community since the late 1880s. The Kansas City Community Mikvah is located inside Kehilath Israel Synagogue and was operational a few months after the Overland Park building opened in 1986. Almost 30 years later, it’s been renovated and will be celebrated with a Chanukat Habayit re-dedication ceremony on May 10. 

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Elisa Pener serves as health coordinator for HBHA and the Jewish Community Campus. Here she is pictured with first-graders Emily Ball (left) and Ethan Hobbs.

She’s known as Nurse Pener to hundreds of people who have had ties to Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy over the past 18 years as well as those who work, play or otherwise spend time at the Jewish Community Campus. As nurses are recognized across the nation next week on National Nurses Day May 6, Elisa Pener will be praised for her skills as a nurse and much, much more.

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In response to the devastating natural disaster in Nepal, Chabad at KU hosted a Kosher Hot Dog Day on campus on Tuesday and donated all the funds to the KU Nepal Student Association to pass on to their families in need. Pictured is a group of KU Chabad students along with members of the KU Nepal Student Association at the hot dog stand.

JOURNALIST WRITES AUTOBIOGRAPHY — Our own Jerusalem-based Israel correspondent Sybil Kaplan has written an autobiography of the exciting time in her life and the life of Israel of the 1970s, titled “Witness to History: Ten Years as a Woman Foreign Correspondent in Israel.” She was one of the few women foreign correspondents of the time and a new immigrant in Israel. Kaplan was the first woman journalist to gain permanent press credentials for a Jewish paper from the Israel Government Press Office. The book’s epilogue chronicles her six visits back to Israel from 2001 on, as well as her daughter coming to live in Israel. From time to time she still writes for The Chronicle.

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“Tradition.”

“If I Were a Rich Man.” 

“Sunrise, Sunset.”

The legendary songs and characters of “Fiddler on the Roof” return to Kansas City in a brand new production by Spinning Tree Theatre. Directed by Michael Grayman, with choreography by Andy Parkhurst and featuring a cast of 23 actors, dancers and singers, the musical will be performed Wednesdays through Sundays from April 23 to May 10 at the Just Off Broadway Theatre. This is Spinning Tree’s final show of its fourth season, and celebrating the 50th anniversary of a classic seemed like an appropriate way to close the curtain on 2015. 

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An $11.7 million renovation of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City will showcase the internationally celebrated Marion and Henry Bloch Collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Art, which will go on permanent view in Spring 2017. The collection was showcased during the 2007 opening of the Bloch Building and bequeathed to the museum under the leadership of Director Emeritus Marc F. Wilson in 2010. The art will be integrated with the museum’s European collection, a project that is the result of a thoughtful planning process and strategic initiative. The renovation of galleries begins this summer on the Plaza level of the Nelson-Atkins Building. 

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Abe Meth

NEVER FORGET — M.J. Rosenbloom brought to my attention that 102-year-old Holocaust survivor Abe Meth was pictured in the Jewish News in Phoenix. Rosenbloom said Meth moved here from Hungary in 1948 and lived here until the mid-70s, when he moved to Arizona. While he lived here, Meth served in many capacities at Congregation Beth Shalom. Meth is pictured speaking at an April 12 interfaith Yom HaShoah service, where he discussed his work with Raoul Wallenberg, who saved thousands of Jews in Nazi-era Hungary.

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The Zeta Beta Tau fraternity has expelled four men in response to an Islamophobic post on the social media app Yeti, according to a statement it released to the Kansan Monday night. At press time Tuesday afternoon, The Chronicle was not able to  obtain the identifications of the four students kicked out of the fraternity.

The statement cited a zero-tolerance policy for racism and discrimination as the reason the fraternity expelled four members within 24 hours of them admitting involvement, it said.

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Soccer has taken Yael Averbuch around the world. As a professional soccer player she has played for both Swedish and Russian teams internationally, and has played for both Washington and New Jersey in the States. As a member of the United States women’s soccer team she has competed with and against the best in the world.

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Today’s grandmother may enjoy being the family’s household manager, spend her time happily volunteering or wear a business suit as the CEO of a major corporation. In children’s books however, grandmas often look like bubbie from the old country.

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Goodman JFS of Broward County (GJFS) has selected Jacob Schreiber as the organization’s new CEO. Schreiber’s appointment is effective May 1. He comes to South Florida after serving as president and CEO of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City.

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