Denver, redux

Hope Alper of Berkeley was among 10,000 volunteers at the Democratic convention in Denver. Stationed in the huge convention center — the site of the daytime action — she found herself driving a cart around the building, which she said “was almost as much fun as driving a convertible over the Golden Gate Bridge.” Other Bay Area folks in Denver for the convention were Hope’s son David Alper (who goes to the University of Colorado), Chana Kranzberg and Aaron Keyak, the he’s press secretary of the National Jewish Democratic Council. Alper stopped by the Denver Art Museum, which was designed by Daniel Libeskind and displays the architect’s customary effects of angles and lighting, and learned it’s “affectionately called DAM by the locals.” Libeskind is the designer of our own Contemporary Jewish Museum, which has interesting angles and lighting itself.

Chickens and eggs

Glenn Lurie reports that there were lots of great chicken and/or egg entrees at the Second Annual Kosher Cook-Off at B’nai Israel Jewish Center in Petaluma, but apparently no answer to that age-old question (you know … which came first?). Chicken or eggs were the “must-have” ingredients in recipes. The event raised $5,000 for the congregation’s men’s club. And the grand winners for appetizers and entrees were (respectively) tarragon chicken-egg salad and Thai chicken coconut soup both created by the Center’s Hadassah. It was a “cluckin’ good time,” Lurie wrote.

A momentous occasion

Paul Shkuratov, a long-time volunteer at j., celebrated his bar mitzvah at San Francisco Congregation B’nai Emunah last weekend. The son of Hanna and Anatoly Shkuratov, Paul emigrated from Ukraine in 1992, and at 38 is thrilled to be a bar mitzvah.

Short shorts …

Poets Stewart Florsheim and Naomi Lowinsky will be reading at Expressions Gallery in Berkeley on Sept. 26. Both are children of German Jewish immigrants and the topic will be included in the selections … Rabbi Shalom Bochner, formerly of Santa Cruz Hillel, has joined Berkeley Congregation Netivot Shalom as the director of lifelong learning, running the Hebrew schools, Shabbat morning programs, youth activities and adult education. Replacing him at Santa Cruz are Rabbi Fern Feldman and Heather Paul, the new program director … At the East Bay’s Center for Jewish Living and Learning, Michal Marks is the new director of educational services. She’ll consult with local schools and Midrashas. Ohad Meyer is the director of Youth Programs and will coordinate youth programming and direct Midrasha retreats and excursions … New board officers at Jewish Family & Children’s Services of the East Bay are Ben Hamburg, president; Ruth Phillips, vice president; Rhoda L. Agin, secretary; and Leon Hmelnitsky, treasurer. Sandra P. Epstein is the immediate past president … Micaela Hellman-Tincher of Palo Alto has joined the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism’s public policy fellowship in Washington, D.C. She will serve as an Eisendrath Legislative Assistant.

Did he stay or did he go?

Some weeks back, I asked readers whether they thought the Israeli boyfriend of the Palestinian woman in the S.F. Jewish Film Festival’s movie “Strangers” stayed in Paris with her or went back to Israel to serve in the IDF. Heather Silverman of Palo Alto, who saw 23 (!) films in the festival, writes, “There is no really good, simple answer to this existential dilemma (personal vs. the political) … Both are plausible, both have repercussions, and these are the issues that the filmmaker wants us to discuss.”