Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

Articles written by Alix Wall

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  • A destination b'nai mitzvah industry is taking shape on Maui, as this teen learned after COVID scrambled her original plans

    Alix Wall|Mar 25, 2022

    (JTA) - Feeling the sand between her toes was Teva Goldstein's favorite part of her December 2021 bat mitzvah on the island of Maui. She and her family all wore white, accessorized with purple leis. The beach in Hawaii was nearly 4,000 miles from her home in Dallas, another thousand miles from where she had lived for most of her life in Maryland. Yet her family had chosen it to mark her bat mitzvah, the moment when she would symbolically assume adulthood among the Jewish people. The path to the...

  • He was sentenced to life in prison - rescue dogs - and a rabbi - helped him find redemption

    Alix Wall|Sep 17, 2021

    VACAVILLE, Calif. (JTA) – Soon after Jon Grobman was released from prison, where he had once thought he would die, he headed back inside voluntarily - this time with canine sidekicks. Grobman was returning as the newest hire of a nonprofit group, Paws for Life K9 Rescue, that had been instrumental in his own long and difficult road to redemption. He won't easily forget the words of the judge who sentenced him to life without parole. "If I felt that you had any promise to ever amount to a...

  • Texas Jewish teen helps unite Democrats and Republicans

    Alix Wall|Mar 20, 2020

    Adam Hoffman isn’t your average American Jewish teen. The grandchild of Holocaust survivors on his mother’s side, he’s a sixth-generation Texan on his father’s side. An Orthodox native of Houston and graduate of Jewish day schools, Hoffman, 19, is now a freshman at Princeton University in New Jersey. What makes Hoffman really unusual, however, is his success bringing together Democrats and Republicans in this deeply polarized political era—despite, or perhaps because of, his public identification as a political conservative. (He’s president o...

  • Home cooking classes where Israel and Jewish culture are always on the menu

    Alix Wall|Jul 6, 2018

    SAN FRANCISCO (JTA)-In the compact, open kitchen of the apartment here that Dalit Gvirtsman shares with her husband, about a dozen women are jostling for space. One is chopping tomatoes, another is sauteing onions and another is squeezing a few dollops of honey into cooked egg noodles. Just beyond, the dining room table is set; each place setting features a napkin with the Israeli flag. A platter of bourekas with miniature Israeli flags has already been demolished. It's another monthly...

  • Rock legend Phil Lesh gathers musician friends for a Grateful Dead Passover

    Alix Wall|May 6, 2016

    SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (JTA)-"Why can't we eat veggie burritos tonight? Will I be miracled? Will they play 'The Wheel?' Will Phil sing?" These four additional questions were asked at a Passover seder this week that's quickly becoming a new Bay Area tradition. Fans of the legendary psychedelic band the Grateful Dead celebrated Passover for the third year in a row Wednesday night at Terrapin Crossroads, the Marin County club owned by the band's bassist, Phil Lesh. This was the first year that seders...