Chanukah candles

Featured event

Wednesday, Dec. 11

Generations After Family Celebration: 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. A celebration of family traditions hosted by the Center for Holocaust Education and Human Dignity. Bring a friend or family member, a story about a special holiday tradition, a song or a recipe. Bagels and other refreshments will be provided. To register, call 480-897-0588 or visit evjcc.org

Events

Saturday-Sunday, Nov. 23-24

Annual ArtFest of Scottsdale: 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Old Town Scottdale’s Civic Center Plaza, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd., Scottsdale. Honoring the local artist community, this year’s ArtFest will feature more than 120 artists selling paintings, sculptures, jewelry, metal art, ceramics and glass art, as well as authors and visual artists. Admission and parking are free; dogs are welcome. For more information, visit 888artfest.com.

Monday, Dec. 9

Unorthodox Podcast Live Broadcast: 7-10 p.m., Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. Unorthodox is the world’s leading Jewish podcast. Hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick and Liel Leibovitz of Tablet Magazine, each episode brings interesting guests, news and more. Tickets: $30 for members, $45 for guests, $18 for those under 30. Space is limited. Register by Dec. 2. For more information, contact Nicole Garber at nicoleg@vosjcc.org or 480-481-7024.

Meetings, Lectures & Classes

Mondays

Mahjong Mondays: 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. Every Monday, except on Jewish or legal holidays. No RSVP is necessary. This free program is intended for players with prior experience. Be sure to bring a current mahjong card and a set if you have one. For more information, visit evjcc.org or call 480-897-0588

Wednesdays

‘The Valley News’: 10-11:30 a.m., Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. The class focuses on current events and is led by Dr. Michael Epner. No registration required.

Third Sunday of every month

Jewish War Veterans: 10 a.m., Arizona State Veterans Home, 4141 N. S. Herrera Way, Phoenix. Scottsdale Post 210 welcomes all Jewish veterans to its monthly meetings. Refreshments served at 9:30 a.m. Call 602-256-0658 for more information.

Wednesday, Nov. 20

JACS: Support Group for Jewish Alcoholics, Addicts and their Friends and Family: 7:30 p.m., BJE Library, Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. No charge. For more information, call the Shalom Center, visit jacsarizona.com or email jacsarizona@gmail.com

Thursday, Nov. 21 

The Life and Tragedy of King David: 9 a.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. Free, but registration required at evjcc.org/open-beit-midrash.

Talmudic Heroes: 10 a.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. Cost: $14. Registration required at evjcc.org/open-beit-midrash.

Mini-courses open to the public: 10:30-11:30 a.m., Beth Emeth Synagogue, 13702 W. Meeker Blvd., Sun City West. A series of 3-4 classes throughout the year on a variety of subjects. Topic: ‘What you should know about the Israeli government.’ A primer on how the Knesset and the parliamentary system works. Who are the major parties, what are their main platforms and how do they decide who gets to hold what offices in the country? No charge for members, $10 per class for non-members. For more information, call 623-584-7210 or email bethemethaz@gmail.com.

EVJCC Interfaith Series: 11 a.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. Anjileen Gumer of the Sikh community discusses the history, theology and practice of Sikhism. Includes kosher lunch after the presentation. $14 ($20 after Nov. 17). 480-897-0588, evjcc.org/open-beit-midrash

Being Inspired by the Religious Geniuses of other Faiths: 1-2 p.m., Congregation Beth Israel, 10460 N 56th St., Scottsdale. Who is a religious genius? What are the qualities that make him or her special and how can these speak to everyone? Speaker: Alon Goshen-Gottstein, founder and director of the Elijah Interfaith Institute. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

People of the Book Group: 3 p.m., Temple Chai Small Sanctuary, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. Discussion of “My Russian Grandmother and Her American Vacuum Cleaner,” by Meir Shalev. RSVP to ssilverman18@gmail.com

Book discussion group: 7 p.m., Cutler-Plotkin Jewish Heritage Center, 122 E. Culver St., Phoenix. Topic: “Rachel’s Tomb” by J.A. Bernstein. Discussion led by Michael and Jennie Kronenfeld, Ph.D. Free. RSVP to lbell@azjhs.org or call 602-241-7870. 

Luther was an Anti-Semite – What Does That Mean For Us?: 7-8:30 p.m., Temple Chai, 4645 E Marilyn Road, Phoenix. Martin Luther shaped western culture. He also contributed to anti-Semitism, eventually inspiring the Third Reich. Is there another way of dealing with this issue than simply condemning Luther? Speaker: Alon Goshen-Gottstein, founder and director of the Elijah Interfaith Institute. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Jewishness in a Time of Crisis: Lessons from Weimar Germany: 7-9 p.m. Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. Discussion led by Professor Paul E. Nahme, Ph.D., Dorot assistant professor of Judaic studies and assistant professor of religious studies at Brown University. Free admission. For more information, visit vosjcc.org/events.

Friday, Nov. 22

Jewish Singles dinner: 5-8 p.m., El Chorro, 5550 E. Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley. Jewish singles group for ages 50 plus. To RSVP, contact Alaxandria Brown at tinaalaxandria.brown@russlyon.com.

Monday, Nov. 25

The Distorted Mirror: What Yiddish Cartoons Reveal about Jewish Life in the early 20th Century: 1-2 p.m., Temple Beth Shalom, 12202 N 101st Ave., Sun City. With the advent of the Yiddish press, Jewish artists began to develop a visual language with which they were able to describe their own communities. Speaker: Eddy Portnoy. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Cactus ORT Book Signing: 1 p.m., Mountain Gate Apartments Clubhouse, 4602 E. Paradise Village Parkway N., Phoenix. Steve Weitzenkorn will discuss and sign his book, “Shakespeare’s Conspirator,” a historical novel about Amelia Bassano Lanier (1569-1645), an Elizabethan woman who may have written many of Shakespeare’s plays. Free and open to the public. For more information, call Ellen at 602-953-9307.

Caring for our Loved Ones: 7 p.m., Temple Chai Small Sanctuary, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. A Jewish support and resource group for families and caregivers. No charge, but donations welcome. For more information, contact Marci Beliak at 602-971-1234 ext. 211 or at mbeliak@templechai.com.

The Bizarre Tales of Yiddishland: What the Yiddish Press Reveals about the Jews: 7-8:30 p.m., Congregation Or Tzion, 16415 N 90th St., Scottsdale. Eddy Portnoy discusses his new book, “Bad Rabbi and Other Strange but True Stories from the Yiddish Press,” which mines century-old Yiddish newspapers to expose the seamy underbelly of pre-WWII New York and Warsaw, the two major centers of Yiddish culture in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Monday, Nov. 25 and Dec. 30

English/Hebrew Book Club: 11 a.m.-noon, Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. Sharpen conversation skills in both English and Hebrew. Read a book in English, then hone your conversation skills in both languages through a book discussion. Last Monday of the month. Free for members, $5 for guests. For more information, visit vosjcc.org/events or call 480-481-7090.

Tuesday, Nov. 26

Yiddish Music Class: 11:45 a.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. An exploration of Yiddish music, old and new. Instructor Sandra Bernoff explores Yiddish music from during the Holocaust. Cost: $8. RSVP at 480-897-0588 or evjcc.org/arts-and-culture.

Hope for Today: 7 p.m., Temple Chai Small Sanctuary, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. Spiritual program of recovery for those who suffer from the debilitating effects of chronic pain and chronic illness, based on the Twelve Steps of AA. Contact: cpa-az@cox.net. No charge.

Friday, Nov. 29

Thanksgiving Family Hike & Picnic Lunch: 8:30 a.m.-noon, Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. A family friendly hike, playground fun and picnic lunch. Depart The J at 8:40 for a one mile hike at George “Doc” Cavalliere Park. Bring a picnic lunch. Free for members. To register, please call at 480-481-7090.

Sunday, Dec. 1

Valley Jewish Singles Brunch: noon, Chompie’s, 4550 E. Cactus Road, Phoenix. Ages 50-plus. Reservations required: valleyjewishsingles@cox.net

Tuesday, Dec. 3

Jews and Whiteness: 1-2 p.m., Congregation Beth Israel, 10460 N. 56th St., Scottsdale. A lecture on the contentious history and sociology of Jews and racial definition. Speaker: Dr. Marc Dollinger. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Black Power, Jewish Politics: Reinventing the Alliance in the 1960s: 7-8:30 p.m., Temple Solel, 6805 E. McDonald Drive, Paradise Valley. Dr. Marc Dollinger will discuss his recent book, “Black Power, Jewish Politics: Reinventing The Alliance In The 1960s.” Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Tuesdays, Dec. 3, Dec. 17 and Dec. 31

Alzheimer’s Caregiver Support Group: 10-11:30 a.m., Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. This grassroots group will meet every other Tuesday. Free and open to the community. Patient care not available during the group session. For more information, contact the Desert Southwest Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association at 1-800-272-3900 or alz.org/dsw.

Wednesday, Dec. 4

Facing Antisemitism: How Should We Respond?: 7-8:30 p.m., Temple Chai, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. A panel event on the current trend of rising anti-Semitism, featuring Marty Haberer of the Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix, Carlos Galindo-Elvira of the Anti-Defamation League of Arizona and Paul Rockower of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Phoenix. Facilitated by Joani Frankel. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Monday, Dec. 9

The Torah Case for Reparations: 1-2 p.m., Temple Chai, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. Speaker: Rabbi Aryeh Bernstein. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

There’s a Riot Goin’ On: Violence in Rabbinic Thought: 7-8:30 p.m., Temple Chai, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. Speaker: Rabbi Aryeh Bernstein. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Sunday, Dec. 15

Israeli Movie Series: 3 p.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. Screening of “Torn,” a documentary about a Polish Catholic priest who discovers that he was born to Jewish parents. Suggested donation: $5. For more information, call 480-897-0588 or email adrian@evjcc.org.

Tuesday, Dec. 17

Hanukkah Baking Class: 7 p.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. Holiday baking class with chef Melinda. Registration required. Tickets: $18. Register at evjcc.org.

Wednesday, Dec. 18

“But Now God is Not One:” Kabbalah as the Cry of a Broken World Longing for Redemption: 1-2 p.m., Temple Beth Shalom, 12202 N. 101st Ave., Sun City. Speaker: Dr. Nathaniel Berman Suggested donation of $18. Visit valleybeitmidrash.org for more information.

A Poetic Mythology for our Age of Anger? The Furious Emergence of Gods, Devils, and Human Beings in Kabbalah and its Lesson for Today: 7-8:30 p.m., Temple Chai, 4645 E. Marilyn Road, Phoenix. Speaker: Dr. Nathaniel Berman. Suggested donation: $18. Register at VBMTorah.org.

Thursday, Dec. 19

EVJCC Interfaith Series: 11 a.m., East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler. President Gary Smith of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Includes kosher lunch after the presentation. $14 ($20 after Dec. 15). 480-897-0588, evjcc.org/open-beit-midrash

Family

Mondays

Breakfast Babies: 9-10:30 a.m., The Brunch Café, 15507 N. Scottsdale Road, Suite 100, Scottsdale. A fun-filled morning gathering for parents and grandparents with babies or toddlers. Complimentary coffee and a chocolate-covered strawberry with the purchase of any meal. Includes a story time picture book reading. Call 480-398-7174 or visit brunchcafe.com for more information.

Baby dance classes: 9:15-9:45 a.m., Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics & Dance Center, 15801 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. For babies who are walking up to age 2 ½. This baby dance class is a fun introduction to music, movement and dancing. Babies will dance to the music while using all kinds of different props and toys. Parent/grandparent participation is required. Free. Advanced registration not required, limited to first 20 children who arrive. Call 602-992-5790 or visit arizonasunrays.com for more information.

Thursdays

Baby dance classes: 9:30-10 a.m., Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics & Dance Center, 15801 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. For babies who are walking up to age 2 ½. This baby dance class is a fun introduction to music, movement and dancing. Babies will dance to the music while using all kinds of different props and toys. Parent/grandparent participation is required. Free. Advanced registration not required, limited to first 20 children who arrive. Call 602-992-5790 or visit arizonasunrays.com for more information.

Mondays and Wednesdays

Baby gym classes: 9-9:30 a.m., Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics & Dance Center, 15801 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. Parents (and grandparents) are invited to bring in their babies, ages 6 months to 18 months. This parent-child class uses tumbling mats, balance beams, parallel bars and trampolines. Work on strength, balancing and coordination with your baby. Free. This is a “drop in” class; advanced registration is not required. Call 602-992-5790 or visit arizonasunrays.com for more information.

Wednesdays and Fridays

Baby gym classes: 9:30-10 a.m., Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics & Dance Center, 3923 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix. Parents (and grandparents) are invited to bring in their babies, ages 6 months to 18 months. This parent-child class uses tumbling mats, balance beams, parallel bars and trampolines. Work on strength, balancing and coordination with your baby. Free. This is a “drop in” class; advanced registration is not required. Call 602-992-5790 or visit arizonasunrays.com for more information.

Sunday, Nov. 24

Mitzvahpalooza with PJ Library: 2-4 p.m., Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. Join PJ Library and Pardes Jewish Day School for an afternoon of mitzvot making. Families can learn about local non-profits and make a mitzvah project for each one. Open to all ages. Free admission. For more information or to register, contact Marcy Lewis at pjlibrary@vosjcc.org

 

Shabbat

First Friday of every month

First Fridays: 6:30-8 p.m., Beth Emeth Synagogue, 13702 W. Meeker Blvd., Sun City West. Begins Nov. 1. Traditional Friday night services with a twist; each month a special aspect, theme or prayer from the Shabbat evening liturgy is focused on. Questions about the service, and Jewish prayer in general, will be answered to help each person. No fee, open to everyone, Jewish and non-Jewish alike. For beginners and experienced members. For more information, call 623-584-7210 or email bethemethaz@gmail.com.

First Saturday of every month

Kavana Café: 8:45 a.m., Congregation Or Tzion, 16415 N. 90th St., Scottsdale. This is an informal opportunity to learn with Rabbi Micah Caplan prior to Saturday-morning services. A light breakfast will be served. For more information, visit congregationortzion.org or call 480-342-8858.

Every Saturday

Torah Express: Noon, Congregation Or Tzion, 16415 N. 90th St., Scottsdale. On Shabbat mornings, during the congregation’s Kiddush lunch, join Rabbi Micah Caplan and other Jewish professionals and teachers from the community for an in-depth study of the Torah portion of the week. No RSVP required. For more information, visit congregationortzion.org or call 480-342-8858. 

Saturday, Dec. 21

Sippy Cup Shabbat: 10-10:45 a.m., Congregation Kehillah, 5858 E. Dynamite Blvd., Cave Creek. This special Shabbat morning is designed for parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles of toddler age children and is open to all families in the community. Welcome the first day of winter and prepare for the beginning of Chanukah with Shabbat music, dancing stories and more. RSVP to Renee by Dec. 18th at 602-369-7667 or via email at info@congregationkehillah.org.

Chanukah

Sunday, Dec. 8

Ezras Cholim 1st Chanukah Gift Boutique & Expo: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Ezras Cholim, 7118 N. 7th St., Phoenix. Chanukah expo with gifts, food, local Jewish vendors and raffles for Chanukah prizes. Free admission. Please bring non-perishable food for Chanukah food drive. Call 602-492-4989 for more information. 

Sunday, Dec. 15

Storytime with Temple Emanuel of Tempe: 1 p.m., Changing Hands Book Store, 6428 S. McClintock Drive, Tempe. Celebrate Chanukah with stories and songs with Rabbi Dean Shapiro from Temple Emanuel.

Wednesday, Dec. 18

Family celebration: 5:30-7:30 p.m., Temple Emanuel of Tempe, 5801 S. Rural Road, Tempe. Celebrate Chanukah with latkes, crafts, dreidl derby and a singalong.

Seniors

Wednesday, Nov. 20

Lunch & Learn: Your Medicare Questions Answered: 11 a.m.-noon, Valley of the Sun JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. Health insurance broker Charmaine Wages answers questions about understanding the bills from Medicare, doctors and insurance companies. Free admission. For more information or to register, call 480-481-7090.

Thursday, Dec. 5

Memory Café: 10-11:30 a.m., Beth El Congregation, 1118 W. Glendale Ave., Phoenix. Jewish Family and Children’s Service hosts a monthly Memory Café event, which will include refreshments along with stimulating, interactive programming geared toward those who have memory loss and their care partners. Keith Johnson of Sankofa Island Magic is this month’s special guest artist. For more information or to confirm times, please contact Kathy Rood at 602-452-4627 or via email at kathy.rood@jfcsaz.org.

Arts

Monday, Dec. 9

BNC Roz Fischer Concert & Conversation: 1 p.m., Palo Cristo Church, 3535 E. Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley. Child prodigy Ethan Yang, age 16, will perform classical violin music. He will be accompanied by award-winning pianist Wei Xing. Refreshments will be served. Tickets: $7 at the door. No reservations required. For more information, contact Joan Sitver at Joansitver @aol.com. 

Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, Dec. 25-Jan. 19

Old Jews Telling Jokes: 2 p.m., 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. start times, Herberger Theater Center, 222 E. Monroe St., Phoenix. The Off-Broadway comedic performance visits Phoenix. For more information about the show or to order tickets, visit playhouseinfo.com or call 602-252-8497. JN

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