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Giving

Families leaving a legacy

For members of the Jewish community who want to create a permanent charitable endowment that will benefit the community long after they’re gone, one of the most notable ways to accomplish this is through the Jewish Community Foundation’s Endowment Book of Life.

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Special Section: Real Estate & Home Guide

Refresh your home with room-by-room renovations

If your favorite room is outdated and dingy, a renovation may be all you need to make the old feel new and to fall in love with your home all over again.

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High Holiday Planner

The High Holiday Planner features articles to help you get ready for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur: A Sephardic seder for Rosh Hashanah; Easiest Rosh Hashanah dinner ever; Celebrity cooks share their Rosh Hashanah recipes; Tiny acts bring great rewards; We need to stop overcooking.

Get Connected

Programs match different ages, stages

Whether you are new to town or entering a new phase in your life, the Valley’s Jewish community offers many ways to get involved.

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Simchas

Jewlyweds: a community for couples

When Marina Awerbuch moved from Toronto to attend graduate school at Arizona State University, she immediately made a connection with Jewish Arizonans on Campus (JAC) and jLive, run by Rabbi Jordan Brumer.

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Summer Cool

VOSJCC opens new pool

With summer on the way, the new lap pool at the Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center in Scottsdale opened May 16. It is the first element of the JCC’s aquatics center infrastructure to open. 

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Passover

Market holds pet Passover seder

In an effort to raise awareness of its kosher-for-Passover canned pet food, Evanger’s Kosher Pet Foods hosted a pet-friendly and family-friendly seder for pets April 18 at Choice Pet Market’s Scottsdale location on Scottsdale Road and Shea Boulevard.

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Good Health

Our Good Health special section features articles about spiritual coaching, helping families adjust when a child is diagnosed with autism, and how children can cope with ADHD. 

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Jewish News Best of brunch 2016

Inclusion

Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month

February is Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month and Jewish News has collected articles about efforts to promote inclusion of the disabled in the worldwide Jewish community.

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Families & Camps

Family trip to Israel is life-changing

Our trip to Israel over this past winter break was with my mom, my dad, my younger sister, my grandpa, my dad’s cousins and two friends. Overall, there were 10 of us, plus our guide. We decided to travel with a guide, which, in hindsight, was the right decision because we had no idea where to go or what to do.

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Hanukkah Planner

Delicious treats for the Hanukkah dessert table

It is a truth universally acknowledged that we can never get tired of Hanukkah latkes and sufganiyot (the holiday’s deep-fried jelly doughnuts). But there’s no harm in adding some culinary variety to this year’s Festival of Lights. Pastry chef Paula Shoyer offers a doughnut recipe with a twist as well as two alternative recipes that are great for Hanukkah and will satisfy any sweet tooth.

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Thanksgiving Planner

Sides add interest to main course

While the turkey is the center of the Thanksgiving feast, there’s a lot to be said for the appeal of the side dishes – warm soups, savory potatoes, hearty vegetable recipes and festive beverages. Here are some new ideas to liven up your holiday table.

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Giving

Program gives Jewish nonprofits training to ‘secure the future’

Few conversations are tougher to have than the one about planning what will happen when you die. So it’s not surprising that it’s been tough for nonprofits to seek commitments for bequests, gifts made from the estate of a person who has died.

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Get Connected

Connect with your community

With 5776 on the horizon, it’s time to reflect on the past year and think ahead to next year. As with any new year, Jewish or secular, looking to the future usually means making resolutions, many of which include how we spend our hours and days. If you’re looking for new ways to invest your time while connecting with your community, Jewish News has rounded up a few organizations you might consider joining or volunteering with to make 5776 more fulfilling.

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High Holidays

How to get back on proper path

We live with a practical tradition. We begin the Jewish New Year with 10 days devoted to introspection. Between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, we are asked to review our past failures and victories, to evaluate our relationships and how we can make things better for ourselves and those we care for. We take stock of our lives and try to put ourselves back on the right path.

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High Holiday Planner 5776

High Holiday Planner

As 5776 approaches, Jewish News has collected articles to help prepare for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur on new High Holiday-themed books for children, easy and elegant menu recipes, Jewish New Year cocktails, a reflection on whether one can atone through social media, as well as a call to be welcoming to singles and the childless.

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Simchas

Food trucks are hot party trend

Food trucks, a staple of the culinary scene in cities like Los Angeles and New York, are gaining popularity in the Valley. While the mobile eateries can be found around town at office complexes, festivals, farmers’ markets and other locations, many are also hirable for birthdays, bar/bat mitzvahs, weddings and other private events.

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Back to School

Starbucks Club: a habit of giving

Traditionally, Chabad centers on college campuses are funded entirely by donors – alumni, parents and community members.

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Mature Living 2015

Exercise is key to maintaining seniors’ brain and body health

Living an active lifestyle is important at any age, but for seniors it’s critical. Exercise can contribute to better health and well-being, provide an energy boost and help delay the aging process. Regular exercise can also help seniors manage and improve existing conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease and osteoporosis. But before starting any exercise or fitness program, seniors should check with their doctors to make sure they are ready to proceed. Exercise benefits seniors both mentally and physically – not just in the gym, but outside as well.

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Summer Cool 2015

Staycation deals end summer on a high note

Craving a vacation but don’t have the time or money (or both) for a full-fledged getaway? Don’t despair; Arizona’s world-class resorts are just a short drive away, and many are offering summer specials to make a staycation an affordable and attractive prospect.

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Weddings

Creative bachelor parties

The bachelor party probably won’t be the groom-to-be’s last night out with the guys, but it should be one of the most memorable. If you’re inclined to forgo the wilder type of bachelor blowout, here are some ideas for great parties:

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Good Health 2015

Focus on Nutrition

Our latest Good Health special section, sponsored by Cypress HomeCare Solutions, focuses on nutrition.

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Wednesday 09/20/2017
Jewish wedding gift do's and don’ts
Posted: September 20, 2017

Not another challah board! That’s the collective cry heard ’round the Jewish world when newlyweds receive a Judaica gift they already possess. Don’t be that friend — follow my simple do’s and don’ts for Jewish wedding gifts.

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12 essential planning steps for brides-to-be
Posted: September 20, 2017

The beautiful fall weather in Arizona is right around the corner, which means we’ll start seeing an uptick in weddings around the Valley.

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Second-time brides share what to wear for your special day
Posted: September 20, 2017

Every bride wants her wedding day to be special, whether it’s her first or second nuptials. There are many more considerations the second time around. Often, there are children involved. Usually, the couple is paying for the ceremony on their own, so finances can factor in more. There’s also the question of what was done the first time and how you want to make wedding No. 2 the same — or totally different.

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From cruise ships to resorts, Jewish destination weddings mix intrigue and tradition
Posted: September 20, 2017

The groom was 60 years old and the wedding was seven years ago, yet the magic and romance of the moment continues to inspire not only the couple themselves, but also the 800 witnesses to that momentous occasion — many of them complete strangers.

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Seven ways to make the broken glass moment last a lifetime
Posted: September 20, 2017

Im eshkachech Yerushalayim, tishkach yemini. If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning.”

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Wednesday 09/13/2017
East Valley JCC selects teens for new leadership program
Posted: September 13, 2017

With the High Holidays just around the corner, now is a natural time for reflecting on the mitzvot performed throughout the year and to pause and consider what more can be done in the coming year.

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Wednesday 09/06/2017
Five things to know when selling your home
Posted: September 06, 2017

Home sellers might have aging floors or outdated carpet. They might have overgrown plants in the front yard, making a good hiding place for a burglar. Or they might be at an age when removing 30 years of junk is too tall a task to do without assistance.

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Refresh your home with room-by-room renovations
Posted: September 06, 2017

If your favorite room is outdated and dingy, a renovation may be all you need to make the old feel new and to fall in love with your home all over again.

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Wellness: Men's Health

Hall not shy on prostate cancer

If you want a frank depiction of what it’s like to receive a prostate cancer diagnosis, read Derrick Hall’s story at pro-state.org. The Arizona Diamondbacks president, diagnosed with prostate cancer at age 42 in September 2011, depicts his dazed post-diagnosis state, including his inability to dial his wife’s number to let her know the news. 

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Wednesday 09/06/2017
A perk of desert living: fall planting season
Posted: September 06, 2017

Every year as the summer days start to shorten and temperatures slowly drop, the Arizona Nursery Association hosts its Southwest Horticulture Annual Day of Education, Conference. Aspiring arborists, nursery owners, landscape professionals, master gardeners and even motivated homeowners swarm to the event to network and learn from the finest plant educators Arizona has to offer. So what brings an entire industry together? The season.

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A taste of honey: Rosh Hashanah recipes
Posted: September 06, 2017

Jewish families around the world begin Rosh Hashanah meals by dipping apples in honey, symbolizing their hope for a sweet New Year. They also drizzle honey into holiday cuisine.

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Kids learn about holiday at The J’s first Rosh Hashanah New Year’s Eve party
Posted: September 06, 2017

Grandparents, parents, children and other family and friends are invited to party like it’s 5778 at the Valley of the Sun JCC’s (The J) first Rosh Hashanah New Year’s Eve party.

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Wednesday 08/30/2017
Personalize your Rosh Hashanah table
Posted: August 30, 2017

Each year, as the High Holidays approach, much thought is given to spiritually preparing for the holiday, reflecting on the past year and making plans for the New Year. A great deal of time also goes toward planning the holiday meal, from the food to the guests. But how can all these considerations be incorporated together? One local designer thinks it starts with the table.

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Chompie’s introduces two new challahs just in time for High Holidays
Posted: August 30, 2017

A dining staple for Jews across the Valley, Chompie’s is introducing some new treats just in time for the High Holidays.

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Find organic, locally sourced food for your Rosh Hashanah meal
Posted: August 30, 2017

Between food allergies, kosher laws, finicky children and other dietary constraints, putting together a healthy High Holiday meal that everyone enjoys can be tough. To help, here are some Rosh Hashanah foods from a number of traditions, along with suggestions for where to find organic and/or locally sourced options.

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Valley organizations work to brighten the High Holidays for seniors
Posted: August 30, 2017

Thanks to a number of area Jewish agencies, homebound seniors don’t have to miss out on High Holiday celebrations.

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Wednesday 08/16/2017
Area synagogues welcome new clergy, say goodbye to retiring rabbis
Posted: August 16, 2017

With summer almost over and the Jewish New Year less than a month away, many Valley Jews will be reconnecting with their synagogues, some of which are welcoming new clergy and saying goodbye to others.

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Jewish youth organizations offer teens fun ways to engage with community
Posted: August 16, 2017

Getting teens to become involved in community organizations isn’t always easy. But when they do venture out, many describe their experiences as “life-changing,” “the best times of my life,” “home away from home” and “I just feel connected there.”

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Four great ways to get connected and engaged with your community
Posted: August 16, 2017

Social interaction is part of being a happy, healthy human being. But all too often, we get caught up with family and work. We forget to go outside and get connected to our neighbors.

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Wednesday 08/09/2017
Simple home upgrades can save energy and money
Posted: August 09, 2017

Enhancing your home’s energy-efficient features is a savvy way to make the space more livable, while also making a smaller impact on the environment and your bank account.

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Monsoon season is back, and so is the damage it causes
Posted: August 09, 2017

Monsoon season always has a way of keeping Valley residents on their toes. Newcomers are always surprised by the storms’ ferocity, while longtime and native Valley residents tend to forget the damage they can cause.

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Smart homes evolving and changing our everyday lives
Posted: August 09, 2017

We’ve all seen the progression from corded landlines to mobile phones, and from mobile phones to smartphones. Now we’re witnessing smart homes emerge, changing the way we live

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Smart homes evolving and changing our everday lives
Posted: August 09, 2017

We’ve all seen the progression from corded landlines to mobile phones, and from mobile phones to smartphones. Now we’re witnessing smart homes emerge, changing the way we live

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Wednesday 08/02/2017
Seniors face extra dangers during Arizona summer
Posted: August 02, 2017

When it comes to weather, Minnesota is the opposite of Arizona. In the depths of winter, Minnesota residents hunker down in their homes and wait for the spring thaw to comfortably enjoy the great outdoors. Of course, here in Arizona, we hunker down in the summer months when temperatures can get as high as 120 degrees and wait for the coolness of fall and winter. One thing both places have in common, though, is that extreme temperatures can take a toll on older adults.

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Jewish seniors learn that ‘love can happen at any age’
Posted: August 02, 2017

After her husband Jerry died, Harriet Vogel started writing letters to him.

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A new home for a new phase in life
Posted: August 02, 2017

It’s tough to see Mom and Dad moving into the stage of life where they need additional care. But just because they’re getting older doesn’t mean you have to “put them in a home.”

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Wednesday 07/12/2017
Real Estate & Home Guide: Think right-sizing, not downsizing when decorating
Posted: July 12, 2017

s people become empty nesters or retire, they are finding themselves looking around at the space they occupy and realizing it no longer suits their needs.

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Real Estate & Home Guide: Tips for downsizing your home and lifestyle
Posted: July 12, 2017

Whether you’re a recent empty nester or simply looking to lower the amount of your mortgage, many Americans are now opting for smaller houses — bucking a century-long trend of building bigger. But if you’re used to bonus rooms and basements, downsizing from a large home with rooms to spare to a smaller, more functional one can be a frustrating transition.

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Real Estate and Home Guide: Summertime is home-buying time in the Valley
Posted: July 12, 2017

The Valley’s real estate market is as hot as our soaring summer temperatures. Unique to Arizona, our real estate market is exceptionally strong for both buyers and sellers. This is a rare market opportunity that will benefit both sides of a transaction. This, in addition to low down-payment options and relaxed lending regulations, are attracting more buyers to the market. As a result, with more buyers, sellers are able to sell their homes for more money and in less time. This combination only adds to the traditionally busy Arizona summer market.

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Wednesday 07/05/2017
Plan a family vacation all three generations can enjoy
Posted: July 05, 2017

Do the words “family vacation” fill you with a sense of dread? Grandparents, children, grandchildren — the entire family all in one place!

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Food for thought
Posted: July 05, 2017

If you can finish this advertising jingle — “When it says Libby’s, Libby’s, Libby’s on the label, label, label, you will...” — you are most likely a baby boomer and can remember canned mush posing as vegetables that you could not even get the dog to eat.

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Wednesday 06/21/2017
Recipe: Scallion pancakes, a popular street food in Shanghai
Posted: June 21, 2017

These tasty pancakes are often cut into triangles and dipped into sauce. Allow yourself a bit of prep time as it takes some muscle to roll them.

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Adventures in Shanghai’s surprising Jewish cuisine
Posted: June 21, 2017

To find the Shanghai Jewish Center on a recent trip to China, I drove by a guarded gatehouse, past a series of windowless buildings to a large white villa with an elegant marble staircase and grand portico. Inside the brightly lit foyer, a Chinese woman escorted me through heavy wooden doors to what must have been the living room, but was now furnished with eight tables and a wine cabinet. Two businessmen — one in a kippah — chatted quietly over their dinner.

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Wednesday 06/14/2017
Self-interest transforms good into evil
Posted: June 14, 2017

Shelach, Numbers 13:2-26

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A child’s refresher course on being a good guest at a b’nai mitzvah service
Posted: June 14, 2017

Your child has turned 12, she’s in sixth grade, and suddenly your mailbox, or your inbox, is filling up with invitations. Some are plain and others extravagant, but all bear the same message – your child has been invited to a bar or bat mitzvah!

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Volunteers creating guide for local Jewish mitzvah projects
Posted: June 14, 2017

When it comes time for b’nai mitzvah students to select a mitzvah project, there are many organizations that can benefit from the students’ community service efforts.

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Wednesday 05/24/2017
Resorts offer luxury packages for Valley residents
Posted: May 24, 2017

The Memorial Day weekend signals the start of the summer resort season here in the Valley. As the snowbirds head back north to escape the heat, resilient Arizonans get the opportunity to experience many of the beautiful luxury resorts the Valley has to offer – at steep discounts. Take a look at our Summer Staycation Resort Guide and find a summer resort package you and your family can enjoy.

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Monday 04/10/2017
Make style the focus of your home renovation
Posted: April 10, 2017

If a home makeover is on your horizon, it’s the perfect time to take note of design trends that may help shape your project. Today’s hottest looks leave plenty of room for personal interpretation, so it’s easier than ever to incorporate the latest looks for a home that seamlessly blends your personality with on-trend decor and design elements.

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Wednesday 03/29/2017
Top 5 money-saving tips for your big event
Posted: March 29, 2017

It was 1980 and I was new at school. I wore purple my first day, because everyone liked purple, and I tried to be friendly without looking desperate.

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Is bracing for a change the best idea?
Posted: March 29, 2017

There’s nothing quite like the combination of puberty and peaking in Jewish adulthood: You walk up to the pulpit, prep to pronounce prayers from the Torah, then suddenly pause to pull leftover bagel from your braces.

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Tuesday 03/21/2017
Finally, Jewish camp for adults
Posted: March 21, 2017

NEW YORK – The campers wake up in their cabins on Friday morning, dress and go to breakfast. Next comes a range of activities – arts and crafts, archery, kickball.

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Wednesday 03/01/2017
Spring has sprung: seize the season
Posted: March 01, 2017

As the glorious weather precedes the spring equinox, chants of “This is why we live here” can be heard throughout the Valley of the Sun. For Phoenicians, amnesia is bliss, as we repress all memory of those triple digit days. Knowing how precious time and the mild temperatures are, let’s celebrate spring in the garden. Grab your aging loved one, and seize the season.

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Area Agency schedules public hearings about services for older adults
Posted: March 01, 2017

As part of process to involve the public in identifying unmet needs of older adults in Maricopa County and how best to serve them, the Area Agency on Aging has scheduled public hearings at three Valley locations from March 6-8.

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Book created for Jews with Alzheimer’s
Posted: March 01, 2017

The book is large and fits comfortably on a lap. The color photographs nearly fill each page. Each image depicts real people doing everyday Jewish things — a young girl eating matzah ball soup; a bubbe and her grandchildren lying in the grass; a man wearing tefillin, praying. The sentences are in large print; they are simple (“Mother says the blessing over the candles”) and easy to read.

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Wednesday 02/22/2017
The mother of the groom tells all
Posted: February 22, 2017

When my son announced that he was planning to ask his girlfriend to become his wife, my husband and I were ecstatic. We had waited a long time for this moment and quickly made arrangements to join the couple for the formal engagement.

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Jewish destination weddings mix intrigue, tradition
Posted: February 22, 2017

The groom was 60-years-old and the wedding was seven years ago, yet the magic and romance of the moment continues to inspire not only the couple themselves, but the 800 witnesses to that momentous occasion – many of them complete strangers.

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Wednesday 02/15/2017
Camp Briefs: Camp Shemesh, Friendly Pines
Posted: February 15, 2017

Camp Shemesh holds ‘sneak peek’: Camp Shemesh will offer a preview of its activities at a sneak peek event 1:30-4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at the Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale.

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Tuesday 02/14/2017
Agencies offer financial assistance for camp
Posted: February 14, 2017

Several agencies offer financial assistance to families who want to send their children to summer camps.

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Preschools reach out to grandparents
Posted: February 14, 2017

Jewish preschools in Phoenix and Scottsdale are making a point to include grandparents into their preschool world.

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Gesher Disability Resources helps with camp inclusion
Posted: February 14, 2017

Parents want their children to enjoy going to school or summer camp, but for the parents of children with physical, learning or behavioral challenges, the gulf between wanting and happening can seem impossibly wide.

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These Jewish summer camps are proud to be basic
Posted: February 14, 2017

In the summer of 2010, with just hours to go before campers arrived for the first day of the first season of Eden Village Camp, director Yoni Stadlin got some bad news from the health department: A procedural issue had delayed the issuance of a permit and the camp could not open as scheduled.

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Wednesday 01/18/2017
Camps strive for screen-free environment
Posted: January 18, 2017

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children spend an average of seven hours a day in front of a screen – from TVs and cell phones to video games and computers. So when parents look at summer camps for their children, many seek out screen-free experiences. Jewish News recently talked with the five sleepaway camp directors to find out their technology policies. This is a small sample of what they said.

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Wednesday 01/11/2017
Spring cleaning all year long
Updated: January 16, 2017 - 4:29 pm

Everyone has that one friend or family member with a messy home so crammed with possessions, it’s ready to explode. The rooms and pantry are disorganized, and objects are strewn across the house. They say they will clean it up, but year after year, you attend the holiday party and the house is a big mess. What better gift for that person than a way to get their home and bulging closets organized?

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Wednesday 11/30/2016
Duet provides support to family caregivers
Posted: November 30, 2016

When you are part of a duet, you can always count on each other’s support.

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Facing atrocity with faith and hope
Posted: November 30, 2016

This story is about Magda Herzberger. She is a concentration camp survivor who is 90 years old and is unique. Some concentration camp survivors understandably do not write and speak about the Holocaust. It is too difficult. But Magda does. She is speaking at a private university in Phoenix this month.

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How to live your dream in your senior years
Posted: November 30, 2016

How will you live your senior years? Will you be standing on your head? Or dancing on land or ice? Some choose to use their later years to find or rekindle their dreams …and go beyond.

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A concierge service for seniors
Posted: November 30, 2016

As the adult child of a senior, Alison Betts watched her widowed mother become more and more frustrated trying to find and schedule service providers to come to her home.

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JFCS launches Creative Aging program for seniors on Dec. 12
Posted: November 30, 2016

Jewish Family & Children’s Service is offering a pilot program of Creative Aging classes from January through May 2017. Participatory arts classes for boomers and other seniors will be held in three six-week sessions at four different locations around the Valley. Arts disciplines included in the pilot are Creative Writing, Dance, Readers’ Theatre and Vocal Music.

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Wednesday 11/09/2016
Fall recipes from new cookbooks
Posted: November 09, 2016

Two new kosher cookbooks provide new delicious recipes for the holidays: “Kosher Taste” by Amy Stopnicki and “Kosher By Design Brings It Home” by Susie Fishbein.

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A Closer Look: Special Needs

CJSN emphasizes inclusion

The Council for Jews With Special Needs (CJSN) offers many resources and programs for Valley Jews with disabilities and their families to help them fulfill spiritual, cultural and religious needs in a variety of settings. 

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Simchas

Preparing for special days

If the words “kosher catering” conjure up visions of bland and unhealthy food, and memories of bar and bat mitzvahs past still haunt you, remember that planning your upcoming simcha doesn’t have to be a monotonous process full of seen-it-befores or tried-that-onces. With the help of creative kosher catering professionals – or by simply looking within yourself – your special day can be one of a kind. 

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