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Jewish Community Center

Festival Events & Schedule

2018 St. Louis Jewish Book Festival Schedule

2019 Winter/Spring Bookend Events

Included with Premier Pass

March 14, 7pm: Alyson Richman

Thursday, March 14, 7pm
Tickets: $20

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From the #1 International bestselling author of The Lost Wife and The Velvet Hours comes an emotionally charged story about a mother’s love, a teacher’s promise and a child’s heart.

Katya, a rising ballerina, and Sasha, a graduate student, are young and in love when an unexpected tragedy befalls their native Kiev. Years later, after the couple has safely immigrated to America, the consequences of this incident cause their son, Yuri, to be born with a rare health condition that isolates him from other children. Maggie, a passionate and dedicated teacher agrees to tutor Yuri at his home, even though she is haunted by her own painful childhood memories. As the two forge a deep and soulful connection, Yuri’s boundless curiosity and unique wisdom inspires Maggie to make difficult changes in her own life. And she’ll never realize just how strong Yuri has made her – until she needs that strength the most.

Fall 2018 Festival Lineup

2018 Brochure
Purchase a Premier Pass

Keynote Speaker

November 4, 7pm: Peter Sagal

Sunday, November 4, 7pm
Staenberg Family Complex, Edison Gymnasium
Tickets: $45

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As the host of National Public Radio’s Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!, Peter Sagal is heard by more than 3 million people every week, broadcast on 450 public radio stations nationwide and via a popular podcast. The show received the prestigious Peabody Award in 2008, the same year it celebrated its 10th Anniversary. The hour-long show has captivated news junkies across the country with its lighthearted approach to current events, and has become the biggest and most beloved weekend radio phenomenon since A Prairie Home Companion.

Sagal is also the host of PBS’ new series, Constitution USA with Peter Sagal. The show follows him as he travels across country—on a Harley Davison Road King—to find out where the Constitution lives, how it works, its history and its vital relevance today.

A native of Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, Sagal attended Harvard University, and has worked as a literary manager for a regional theater, a stage director, an actor, an extra in a Michael Jackson video (Remember the Time), travel writer, an essayist and a staff writer for a motorcycle magazine. He is the author of numerous plays that have been performed in large and small theaters around the country and abroad. He has also written a number of screenplays, including an original screenplay that became, without his knowledge, the basis for Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights.

Sagal is a radio host, author, humorist and commentator on current events with a remarkably eclectic career and an inquiring mind. Peter Sagal is also the author of a new book, The Incomplete Book of  Running. He lives in Chicago with his wife and three daughters.

2018 Festival

November 5, 1pm: Rose Levy Beranbaum

Monday, November 5, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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In this book of no-fuss recipes everyone should know, trusted baking expert and three-time winner of a James Beard Award, Rose Levy Beranbaum guides you through every recipe for can’t-fail results—with a streamlined, simplified approach and more than 600 mouthwatering and instructive photos. Throughout Rose’s Baking Basics, Rose shares her unique tips and methods for unlocking the secrets to the best flavors and foolproof results, for a treasury of essential recipes you’ll use forever.

Author’s treats will be served!

Sponsored by The Rubin Family Foundation

November 5, 7pm: Martin Fletcher

Monday, November 5, 7pm
Tickets: $20
Returning Festival Favorite!

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The tumultuous early years of the young Jewish state are brought to vivid life through the eyes of two German Jewish brothers in Promised Land. Arie survived the Holocaust in Europe. Peter, one year older, was chosen for the Kindertransport and sent to America. They find each other again in Israel, knowing everyone else in their family has been murdered. Peter becomes a top Mossad agent and Arie becomes a scheming businessman, but they have fallen in love with the same woman. The brothers’ jealousies and intrigues are mirrored by the young nation’s very own struggles to survive. Author Martin Fletcher spent many years as the NBC News Bureau Chief in Tel Aviv and has won many awards, including five Emmys.

Sponsored by Sidney Guller, Howard Hearsh in loving memory of Betty Hearsh, Terry & Harvey Hieken, Phyllis & Stephen Kamenetzky, Felicia & Steve Malter, Judi Scissors & Sam Broh

November 6, 10:30am: Rebecca Erbelding

Tuesday, November 6, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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America has long been criticized for refusing to give harbor to the Jews during World War II as Hitler and the Nazis closed in. Rescue Board tells the extraordinary unknown story of the War Refugee Board, FDR’s unpublicized effort late in the war to save the remaining Jews. Author Rebecca Erbelding is an archivist, curator, and historian at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

Sponsored by Berger Memorial Chapel/Richard & Linda Stein and Emily Stein MacDonald, Rosalie & Jerome Brasch, Silk Foundation (Susan Godwin Kofkoff & Richard Kofkoff, Gary Godwin & Deborah Godwin)

November 6, 1pm: Jamie Bernstein

Tuesday, November 6, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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The oldest daughter of revered composer/conductor Leonard Bernstein offers a rare look at her father on the centennial of his birth in a deeply intimate and broadly evocative memoir. In Famous Father Girl, Bernstein mines the emotional depths of her childhood and invites us into her family’s private world. Deeply moving and often hilarious, Bernstein’s beautifully written memoir is a great American story about one of the greatest Americans of the modern age.

Sponsored by Gallop Family Foundation, Marsha & David Soshnik, Webster University

November 6, 7pm: Sports Night

Tuesday, November 6, 7pm
Staenberg Family Complex, Edison Gymnasium
Tickets: $25

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Moderator: Randy Karraker, 101 ESPN Radio

Benjamin Hochman
The Big 50: St. Louis Cardinals is an amazing, full-color look at the 50 men and moments that make the Cardinals the Cardinals. St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Benjamin Hochman recounts the living history of the team, counting down from No. 50 to No. 1. Learn about and revisit the remarkable stories, featuring greats like Stan Musial, Bob Gibson, Mark McGwire, Albert Pujols, and Yadier Molina.

David Goldstein
Alley-Oop to Aliyah: African American Hoopsters in the Holy Land chronicles four decades of African Americans traveling to Israel to play professional basketball. In that time, more than 800 have made the journey, many of whom have fallen in love with the country and chosen to return year after year. Alley-Oop to Aliyah examines how they end up in Israel in the first place, the multitude of distinctive aspects of their lives there, the challenges and difficulties they face, and the reasons some choose to return to Israel year after year or even make it their home.

Sponsored by Brown Smith Wallace, Diane & Paul Gallant, Gail Glaser, Kuhn Foundation, Howard N. Lesser

Before Sport’s Night, join us for the St. Louis Jewish Sports Hall of Fame 8th Induction & Dinner Ceremony at 5pm.
$36 per person; includes a ticket to Sports Night
Reservations required by October 23. Contact Phil Ruben, 314-442-3279.
The St. Louis Jewish Sports Hall of Fame was established in 1992 to honor Jewish individuals who have distinguished themselves in the area of athletics.

November 7, 10:30am: Mark Weinberg

Wednesday, November 7, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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Former special advisor and press secretary to President Ronald Reagan shares an intimate, behind-the-scenes look inside the Reagan presidency—told through the movies they watched together every week at Camp David in Movie Nights with the Reagans. Mark Weinberg’s unparalleled access offers a rare glimpse of the Reagans—unscripted, relaxed, unburdened by the world, with no cameras in sight. Each chapter discusses a legendary film, what the Reagans thought of it, and provides warm anecdotes and untold stories about his family and the administration.

Sponsored by Goldstein & Pressman, P.C.

November 7, 1pm: Angela Himsel

Wednesday, November 7, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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How does a woman who grew up in rural Indiana as a fundamentalist Christian end up a practicing Jew in New York? Angela Himsel is the seventh of eleven children from a family that belonged to an evangelical branch of Christianity, the Worldwide Church of God. In search of the Holy Spirit, Angela decided at nineteen to study at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem. But instead of strengthening her faith, she was introduced to a thrilling new world. And she began to think that maybe everything she’d been taught was wrong. Those three words–“maybe I’m wrong”–set her on a completely different path, and, ultimately, she found her own form of salvation in the most unexpected place: a mikvah on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Told with warmth, humor, and a multitude of religious and philosophical insights, A River Could Be A Tree traces a seemingly impossible journey of faith, family and friendship.

Sponsored by Nancy & Jerry Raskas

November 7, 7pm: Izzy Ezagui

Wednesday, November 7, 7pm
Tickets: $20

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Combining refreshing candor with self-deprecating wit, this inspiring memoir will encourage readers to live up to their aspirations despite seemingly impossible odds. On January 8, 2009, Izzy Ezagui—an American who had enlisted in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) at nineteen—lost his arm in a mortar attack on the border of the Gaza Strip. In this stirring and wryly humorous memoir, Izzy recounts his tortuous trek through rehabilitation to re-enlistment as a squad commander in the IDF. He became the world’s only one-armed Special Forces sharpshooter. Through his motivational speeches across the world, and now through this book, Disarmed, he encourages people to seek their own power, and to face whatever adversity life throws at them.

Sponsored by Paul & Betty Mendelson

November 8, 10:30am: Catherine Price

Thursday, November 8, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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Is your phone the first thing you reach for in the morning and the last thing you touch before bed? Do you frequently pick it up “just to check,” only to look up forty-five minutes later wondering where the time has gone? Do you say you want to spend less time on your phone, but have no idea how to do so without giving it up completely? If so, How To Break Up With Your Phone is your solution. Award-winning journalist Catherine Price presents a practical, hands-on plan to break up, and then make up, with your phone. The goal? A long-term relationship that actually feels good. In a world of hyper-distraction, this book makes the case for unplugging and making time for friends, family, or reflection.

Sponsored by Ken & Nancy Kranzberg

November 8, 1pm: Rachel Herz

Thursday, November 8, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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In Why You Eat What You Eat, acclaimed neuroscientist Rachel Herz mixes the social with the scientific to uncover how psychology, neurology, and physiology shape our relationship with food and how food alters the relationships we have with ourselves and with one. Rachel Herz uncovers the fascinating and surprising facts that affect food consumption: bringing reusable bags to the grocery store encourages us to buy more treats; our beliefs about food affect the number of calories we burn; TV alters how much we eat; and what we see and hear changes how food tastes.

Sponsored by The Harvey Kornblum Foundation, Saint Louis Science Center

November 8, 7pm: Wendy Sherman

Thursday, November 8, 7pm
Staenberg Family Complex/Edison Gymnasium
Tickets: $25

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Distinguished ambassador Wendy Sherman combines personal storytelling and expert insight to show readers how they can put diplomatic values like courage, persistence, and empathy to work in their own lives. In Not for the Faint of Heart, Sherman shares stories of her time in the State Department negotiating the most sensitive issues of our time (often as the lone woman in the room), along with personal stories that show how our private experiences affect our professional lives. Not for the Faint of Heart brings readers inside the world of international diplomacy and into the mind of one of our most effective diplomatic negotiators, revealing that success takes courage, the ability to forge common ground, and an understanding of the nature and use of power.

Sponsored by Eileen Schneider Edelman, Fox Family Foundation, Margie Horowitz, Myrtle & Bernard Kornblum’s Changing World Fund

November 9, 10:30am: Rabbi Elana Zaiman

Friday, November 9, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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Authentic connection with ourselves and with those we love is at the core of writing forever letters. We can share our wisdom and personal experiences; express our love and gratitude; accept responsibility for misunderstandings and hurts; ask for forgiveness and forgive. Through inspirational stories, sample letters and writing guidance, Rabbi Elana Zaiman’s book, The Forever Letter, serves as our companion on a transformational journey of self-discovery and uplifting and deepening our relationships.

Sponsored by Maxine & Steven Mirowitz, Rabbi Carnie & Mrs. Paulie Rose

November 9, 1pm: Stephen Flatow

Friday, November 9, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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This is the story of one brave father’s determination to bring his daughter’s murderers to justice through the American justice system. Stephen M. Flatow says he was “just a real estate lawyer in New Jersey” until April 9, 1995. Flatow’s life changed that day when he learned his daughter Alisa, a twenty-year-old college student traveling in Israel, had been the victim of a terrorist bus-bombing. After he discovered the Iranian government had directly sponsored the bomber, Flatow decided to sue the terror state. It was not to be quixotic, as Flatow, working with a superb Washington lawyer and an astute forensic researcher, not only won a dramatic verdict against Iran, but collected a huge judgment.

In A Father’s Story: My Fight for Justice Against Iranian Terror, Stephen M. Flatow recalls the events surrounding his successful lawsuit.  A major motion picture based on Flatow’s life is in development with producer Scott LaStaiti and Palantir Group.

Sponsored by Ilene & Howard Pakett and Family

November 10, 7pm: Comedy with Sarge

Saturday, November 10, 7pm
Staenberg Family Complex/Edison Gymnasium
Tickets: $40
Returning Festival Favorite!
RSVP by November 1

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Born black and Jewish in Miami Beach, Florida, “Sarge” (as he’s known nationwide) is one of the most hilarious, high energy, triple threat entertainers working anywhere in the country today. Not only is he a top notch comedian and an excellent singer, he became a piano virtuoso at the age of five. Also, Sarge is 27 years clean and sober and he works as a clinician in treatment centers and prisons from Miami to Malibu.

Sponsored by Stuart & Marie Block

Contact: Amy Pakett, 314.442.3152

November 11, 10:30am: Allison Yarrow

Sunday, November 11, 10:30am
Takes place at MaTovu, 4200 Blaine Avenue, 63110
Tickets: $5

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To understand how we got here, we have to rewind the VHS tape. 90s Bitch tells the real story of women and girls in the 1990s, exploring how they were maligned by the media, vilified by popular culture, and objectified in the marketplace. Trailblazing women like Hillary Clinton, Anita Hill, Marcia Clark, and Roseanne Barr were undermined. Newsmakers like Monica Lewinsky, Tonya Harding, and Lorena Bobbitt were shamed and misunderstood. The advent of the 24-hour news cycle reinforced society’s deeply entrenched sexism. Meanwhile, marketers hijacked feminism and poisoned girlhood for a generation of young women.

Yarrow’s thoughtful, juicy, and timely examination is a must-read for anyone trying to understand 21st-century sexism and end it for the next generation.

November 11, 7pm: Broadway Salutes 40 Years of the St. Louis Jewish Book Festival

Sunday, November 11, 7pm
Staenberg Family Complex/Edison Gymnasium
Tickets: $40
RSVP by November 1

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Join us for a truly special evening to celebrate 40 amazing years of the St. Louis Jewish Book Festival. Ben Nordstrom and April Strelinger, stars of The Muny, The Rep and STAGES ST. LOUIS, along with students from the Webster University Conservatory, will sing and entertain with songs from your favorite Broadway musicals. Under the musical direction of Steve Neal, the evening will be filled with music from the golden age of Broadway to the hits of today.

Sponsored by J Associates

November 12, 10:30am: Missouri's Own Panel

Monday, November 12, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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Moderator: Jane Henderson, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Juli Berwald, Spineless: The Science of Jellyfish and the Art of Growing a Backbone
Juli Berwald’s journey into the world of jellyfish is a personal one. Over a decade ago she left the sea and her scientific career behind to raise a family in landlocked Austin, Texas. Increasingly dire headlines drew her back to jellies, as unprecedented jellyfish blooms toppled ecosystems and collapsed the world’s most productive fisheries. What was unclear was whether these incidents were symptoms of a changing planet or part of a natural cycle.

Berwald’s desire to understand jellyfish takes her on a scientific odyssey. Gracefully blending personal memoir with crystal-clear distillations of science, Spineless reveals that jellyfish are a bellwether for the damage we’re inflicting on the climate and the oceans and a call to realize our collective responsibility for the planet we share.

Dr. Richard Lazaroff, Some Assembly Required
The parenting journey can be a life-changing experience, and when going somewhere new, guidelines are often helpful. In Some Assembly Required, author Dr. Richard Lazaroff offers a pediatrician’s advice for parents attempting to raise successful and emotionally healthy children by making intentional choices starting in infancy and continuing through adolescence. With a list of online and print resources included, Dr. Lazaroff shares his personal and professional experiences and lessons learned from his thirty-five years of work with humor, guidance, and wisdom about what often lies just beneath the everyday challenges of parenthood.

Jonathan Losos, Improbably Destinies: Fate, Chance, and the Future of Evolution
Jonathan Losos reveals what the latest breakthroughs in evolutionary biology can tell us about one of the greatest ongoing debates in science. He takes us around the globe to meet the researchers who are solving the deepest mysteries of life on Earth through their work in experimental evolutionary science. Improbable Destinies will change the way we think and talk about evolution. Losos’s insights into natural selection and evolutionary change have far-reaching applications for protecting ecosystems, securing our food supply, and fighting off harmful viruses and bacteria. This compelling narrative offers a new understanding of ourselves and our role in the natural world and the cosmos.

Sponsored by Gail & David Berwald, Bethe & Gary Growe, Gloria & Sanford Spitzer Foundation

November 12, 1pm: Anthony LeDonne - CANCELLED

Do to unforseen circumstances, Anthony LeDonne will not be appearing on Monday, November 12 at 1pm. Should he become available in the future, we will happily bring him in for an event.

November 12, 7pm: Rebecca Rosen

Monday, November 12, 7pm
Takes place in the Edison Gymnasium/Staenberg Family Complex
Tickets: $25
Returning Festival Favorite!

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After serving as a spiritual medium for more than two decades, Rebecca Rosen knows with absolute clarity that the spirit world is always trying to get our attention. Our departed loved ones and spirit guides intervene in our lives daily to let us know that our real-life struggles have a rhyme, a reason, and a purpose and that we’re not alone to figure it all out.

In What the Dead Have Taught Me about Living Well, Rosen shares the daily practices and spiritual tools she relies on to recognize and interpret signs from beyond. This new perspective will help you better understand and navigate your day-to-day world so that new opportunities and possibilities unfold in all aspects of your life. Through personal insights and shared extraordinary stories from the Other Side, she answers the question she’s asked most frequently: How can my departed loved ones help guide me to live my best life?

Sponsored by Regina Shapiro & Paula Sigel in Memory of our Fathers Hymen & Harry “Pete” Glovinsky, Karen Yoffie

November 13, 10:30am: Dennis Turner

Tuesday, November 13, 10:30am
Staenberg Family Complex/Edison Gymnasium
Tickets: Free
RSVP by November 1

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This event is free of charge as part of our Mitzvah Authors Program.

What Did You Do In The War, Sister? is a fictional memoir based on actual events. The inspiration for the book came from hundreds of letters and other accounts written by Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur who were living in German-occupied Belgium and Italy during World War Two.

Author Dennis J. Turner created a composite character and order of nuns to give voice to the letter writers. Sister Christina, an Ohio farm girl, joined the Sisters of Our Lady to teach English and agricultural skills to school girls. Assigned to Belgium in 1939, she worked Nazi-occupied Belgium for the duration of World War Two. Soon the nuns were risking their lives by joining forces with the Belgian Resistance to hide refugees, Jews, and downed American pilots. Turner’s story covers military and civilian life during Nazi occupation, the Battle of the Bulge, and Belgium’s liberation by the Allied forces. This evocative account runs through August 1945.

Sponsored by Judith Gall

November 13, 1pm: Marilyn Rothstein

Tuesday, November 13, 1pm
Tickets: $20
Returning Festival Favorite

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Husbands and Other Sharp Objects is a heartwarming, hilarious novel for anyone who has ever had a family, from the author of Lift And Separate. After a lifetime of marriage, Marcy Hammer, a Jewish woman living in Connecticut, is ready to get herself unhitched–just as everyone else in her life is looking for a commitment. Her new boyfriend, Jon, wants to get serious, and her soon-to-be ex-husband, Harvey, The Bra King, wants to get back together. When Marcy’s headstrong daughter, Amanda, announces a secret engagement to Harvey’s attorney, Marcy finds herself planning her daughter’s wedding as she plans her own divorce.

Marilyn Simon Rothstein grew up in New York City, earned a degree in journalism from New York University, began her writing career at Seventeen Magazine, married a man she met in an elevator, and owned an advertising agency for more than twenty-five years.

Sponsored by Debbi Grebler in Memory of
David M. Grebler

November 13, 7pm: Adam Valen Levinson

Tuesday, November 13, 7pm
Tickets: $20

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Armed only with college Arabic and restless curiosity, Adam Valen Levinson set out to “learn about the world 9/11 made us fear.” From a base in globalized and sterilized Abu Dhabi, he sets out to lunch in Taliban territory in Afghanistan, travels under the watchful eye of Aleppo’s secret police, risks shipwreck en route to Somalia, investigates Yazidi beliefs in a sacred cave, cliff-dives in Oman, celebrates New Year’s Eve in Tahrir Square, and, at every turn, discovers a place that matches not at all with its reputation.

While politicians and media eagerly stroke the flames of Islamophobia, Valen Levinson crosses borders with abundant humor and humanity. Seeking common ground everywhere, he finds that people who pray differently often laugh the same. He became a bar mitzvah at twenty-one (instead of the usual thirteen), and slowly learned how childish it was to live by decisions and distinctions born of fear. The Abu Dhabi Bar Mitzvah is his story.

Sponsored by Judith & Ted Isaacs

November 14, 10:30am: Beck Dorey-Stein

Wednesday, November 14, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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In 2012, Beck Dorey-Stein was just scraping by in DC when a posting on Craigslist landed her, improbably, in the Oval Office as one of Barack Obama’s stenographers. The ultimate DC outsider, she joined the elite team who accompanied the president wherever he went, recorder and mic in hand, eventually traveling to 45 countries around the globe.

On whirlwind trips across time zones, Beck forged friendships with a tight group of fellow travelers—young men and women who, like her, left their real lives behind to hop aboard Air Force One in service of the president. Set against the backdrop of a White House full of glamour, drama, and intrigue, From The Corner of the Oval is the story of a young woman making unlikely friendships, getting her heart broken, learning what truly matters, and discovering her voice in the process.

Sponsored by Bob Germain and Bruce Glatter

November 14, 1pm: Samantha Harris

Wednesday, November 14, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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Millions watched Samantha Harris cohost Dancing with the Stars and Entertainment Tonight and then share the story of her breast cancer diagnosis at age 40. After the initial shock and recovery from a double mastectomy, she sought answers to why it could have happened and ways to improve her overall health.

Now the Emmy®-winning journalist, nutrition advocate, certified personal trainer, and mother of two offers her real-world strategies for overcoming adversity and systematically improving your total well-being. Your Healthiest Healthy combines her humorous, sometimes harrowing, always inspiring journey with research-backed advice, insights from doctors and scientists, and effective tips into an easy-to-follow, eight-step road map. Her practical advice will empower you to eat better, work out smarter, reduce toxins around you, master your medical awareness, handle health crises, strengthen your relationships, boost your positivity, and build resiliency. With this complete program, you can maximize your health, energy, and happiness for life.

November 14, 7pm: Nora Krug - Kristallnacht Program

Wednesday, November 14, 7pm
Tickets: $10

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Belonging is a revelatory, visually stunning graphic memoir by award-winning artist Nora Krug, telling the story of her attempt to confront the hidden truths of her family’s wartime past in Nazi Germany and to comprehend the forces that have shaped her life, her generation, and history.

Nora Krug’s drawings and visual narratives have appeared in publications such as The New York Times, The Guardian, and Le Monde diplomatique. She is an associate professor in the Illustration Program at Parsons School of Design in New York and lives in Brooklyn with her family.

In partnership with the Holocaust Museum and Learning Center – in memory of Gloria M. Goldstein.

Sponsored by The Delmar Gardens Family, Stan & Jean Margul, Gloria Feldman & Family in Loving Memory of Rubin Feldman

November 15, 1pm: Andy Theising and Rabbi Jeffery Marx

Thursday, November 15, 1pm (NEW TIME)
RSVP by November 1
This event is free of charge as part of our Mitzvah Authors Program.

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Join us for a look at Jewish immigration through one family’s experience. Rabbi Jeffrey Marx (Santa Monica, CA) will discuss his ongoing research regarding the Jewish immigration experience in the 19th century and speak to the Breakstone Family’s immigration and the establishment of a significant American presence. Dr. Andrew Theising, author of Main Street USA, will speak about one member of that family – Henry Bregstone – who settled for a time in St. Louis and became one of the Midwest’s most prolific photographers.

Enjoy a photography exhibit before the speakers.

November 15, 7pm: Nell Scovell - Women's Night

Thursday, November 15, 7pm
Tickets: $25
RSVP by November 1

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You’ve almost certainly laughed at Scovell’s jokes–you just didn’t know it until now. Just the Funny Parts is a juicy and scathingly funny insider look at how pop culture gets made. For more than thirty years, writer, producer and director Nell Scovell worked behind the scenes of iconic TV shows, including The Simpsons, Late Night with David Letterman, Murphy Brown, NCIS, The Muppets, and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, which she created and executive produced.

In 2009, Scovell gave up her behind-the-scenes status when the David Letterman sex scandal broke. Only the second woman ever to write for his show, Scovell used the moment to publicly call out the lack of gender diversity in late-night TV writers’ rooms. Her criticisms fueled a cultural debate. Two years later, Scovell was collaborating with Sheryl Sandberg on speeches and later on Lean In, which resulted in a worldwide movement. Now, Scovell opens up with this fun, honest, and often shocking account. It’s part memoir, part how-to, and part survival story.

Sponsored by Eidelman & Traub DDS, Inc., Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of St. Louis

November 16, 10:30am: Dr. Elisha Waldman

Friday, November 16, 10:30am
Tickets: $20

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In This Narrow Space, Dr. Elisha Waldman, an American pediatric oncologist working at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, describes his struggles as a doctor in the Israeli healthcare system. As he cares for his vulnerable young patients, Waldman explains how navigating the unique political, economic, cultural, linguistic, and religious challenges of the hospital affects how he constructs his identity as a physician, an American, an Israeli, and a Jew.

This Narrow Space is not only Waldman’s personal story, and it is also the story of the hospital, its staff, patients, and their families—and even of Jerusalem, Israel, and the Middle East as a whole. From the opening pages, Waldman shows that his experiences are closely intertwined with those of others. It is to his credit that he gives the hospital, its employees, and those they serve such central roles in the book.

Sponsored by Barnes Jewish Hospital

November 16, 1pm: Jocelyn Wurzburg

Friday, November 16, 1pm
Tickets: $20

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Jocie follows the author’s transformation from a typical Southern Jewish American princess into an honored civil rights activist. Born in 1940, Jocelyn Wurzburg reached adulthood in Memphis during its 1960s turmoil. Her value system was turned upside down and Jocie tried to straddle the life she was reared to live and the life that was revolting against her former self. From the State House to the White House, this book charts her journey through sacrifice and even death, but also through crazy-fun situations and meetings with incredible people.

Sponsored by Carole C. Levin


2018-2019 Bookend Events

Included with Premier Pass

October 4, 7:30pm: Dr. Michael Greger

Thursday, October 4, 7:30pm
Congregation Shaare Emeth, 11645 Ladue Road, 63141

Tickets: RSVPs and tickets are required; $40 general admission; $150 VIP Admission (limited number available)
VIP Admission includes reserved premium seating, an autographed book (How Not to Die), an exclusive pre-event reception at 6pm with Dr. Greger, and a cooking demonstration of recipes taken from Dr. Greger’s Cookbook by Caryn Dugan (stlveggirl) and tasting by Chef Marianne Moore.
Premier Pass Holders should RSVP by calling Amy Bornstein at 314-442-3152.

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The American Parkinson Disease Association – Greater St. Louis Chapter presents the Elliot & Mary Ann Stein Speaker Series featuring Dr. Michael Greger, M.D. FACLM, a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. How Not to Die reveals the groundbreaking scientific evidence behind the only diet that can prevent and reverse many of the causes of disease-related death. Dr. Michael Greger, examines the fifteen top causes of death in America and explains how nutritional and lifestyle interventions can sometimes trump prescription pills and other pharmaceutical and surgical approaches, freeing us to live healthier lives.

Sponsored by The American Parkinson Disease Association – Greater St. Louis Chapter

October 25, 7pm: Howard Schwartz

Thursday, October 25, 7pm
Jewish Federation of St. Louis, 12 Millstone Campus Drive, 63146
Free Event

Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav is widely recognized as the greatest Jewish storyteller of all time. Until now, only thirteen of his stories were widely documented, but folklorist Howard Schwartz has located dozens of his other tales, collected here in A Palace of Pearls: The Stories of Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav for the first time in English. RSVP required by October 18.

In Partnership with the Center for Jewish Learning
Sponsored by the Saul Brodsky Jewish Community Library

October 30, 7pm: Sally Kohn

Tuesday, October 30, 7pm
Tickets: $20

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In The Opposite of Hate, writer, activist and CNN political commentator Sally Kohn talks to leading scientists and researchers, investigating the evolutionary and cultural roots of hate and how simple incivility can be a gateway to much worse. She travels to Rwanda, the Middle East, and across the United States, introducing us to terrorists, white supremacists, and even some of her own Twitter trolls, drawing surprising lessons from these dramatic examples, including inspiring stories of those who left hate behind. As Kohn boldly confronts her own shameful moments, whether it’s the girl she bullied as a child or her own deep partisan resentment, she points the way toward change.

November 3, 7pm: Sarah Kendzior

Saturday, November 3, 7pm
Tickets: $20
Interviewed by Wendy Jaffe, Representing Booksource

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Local St. Louisan, Sarah Kendzior, provides a clear-eyed account of the realities of life in America’s overlooked heartland in The View from Flyover Country, a piercing critique of the labor exploitation, race relations, gentrification, media bias, and other aspects of the post-employment economy. The View from Flyover Country, with an updated introduction and epilogue that reflect on the ways that the You-Know-Who presidency was the certain result of the realities first captured in Kendzior’s essays, is necessary reading for anyone who believes that the only way for America to fix its problems is to first discuss them with honesty and compassion.

Sponsored by Booksource

January 21, 7pm: MLK Day Commemoration - Sam Graham-Felsen

Monday, January 21, 7pm
FREE event
Clayton High School, 1 Mark Twain Circle, 63105

Green explores a cross-racial friendship of two middle school boys in 1992. David Greenfield, nicknamed “Green” is one of only two white boys at an all-black school. This coming of age novel which poignantly reflects racism, privilege and what it means to try to overcome built-in barriers to relationships.

Graham-Felsen, a former Obama campaign staffer, will moderate a discussion with leaders from local schools about education, class and modern day civil rights.

This program is presented in partnership with the Barbara and Michael Newmark Institute for Human Relations at the Jewish Community Relations Council.