Articles written by Julie Wiener

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How to choose a Passover Haggadah

(MyJewishLearning via JTA)—With thousands of published Haggadahs available for purchase, choosing the one that is best for your seder can be overwhelming. For an overview of the many possibilities,... Full story


Passover seder: How to be a good guest

(MyJewishLearning via JTA)—If you’ve never been to a Passover seder, you might be feeling a bit intimidated at the prospect. Relax. The seder is an opportunity for celebration, discussion and lots of tasty food. Here are some things to know befor... Full story


How to make your own Passover Haggadah

(MyJewishLearning via JTA)-Making your own Haggadah is not just a money saver, but also a great way to educate yourself about the Passover seder, add a unique twist to the festive meal and have a more... Full story


Chanukah gift ideas for newcomers to the tribe

(MyJewishLearning via JTA)-Do you have friends or family members who are new to the tribe? Maybe they recently converted, married a Jew or became newly interested in their Jewish roots? Or maybe... Full story


Is it really a shock that one-third of Americans wouldn't hide Jews?

(JTA)-Is the glass one-third empty or two-thirds full? A poll commissioned by distributors of the Holocaust film "Return to the Hiding Place" asked 1,000 Americans a question many Jews have pondered:... Full story


The top Jewish newsmakers of 5775

(JTA)-Whether you love them or hate them-or your feelings are purely pareve-these 13 Jews repeatedly made the news in 5775. David Blatt  American-Israeli coach David Blatt, in his first season as... Full story


NPR's Nina Totenberg reclaims dad's stolen violin, now worth millions

(JTA)-Jewish violin virtuoso Roman Totenberg enjoyed a long life, making it to the ripe old age of 101. But that wasn't quite long enough to be reunited with the prized instrument that was stolen... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    Features    May 29, 2015

Natalie Portman raps Bibi, hearts Alan Dershowitz

(JTA)-Hollywood Reporter's new cover story interview with actress Natalie Portman may be one of the most heavily Jewish-themed articles the magazine has ever published. In it, the Israel-born... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    Features    May 29, 2015

Could an Israeli invention end cooking as we know it?

(JTA)-Plenty of mobile apps help consumers order meals for delivery or offer recipes. But a new app developed by Israeli entrepreneurs will actually prepare the food for you on your kitchen counter.... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    May 15, 2015

Who is Ayelet Shaked, Israel's new justice minister?

(JTA)-Ayelet Shaked (pronounced ShahKED), Israel's newly appointed justice minister and a member of the right-wing Jewish Home party, has quickly risen to prominence having served just two years in... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    Opinions    April 3, 2015

Must bar/bat mitzvah kids be video stars?

(JTA)—Another slick bar mitzvah invitation video of questionable taste has gone viral. This time it’s for the impending bar mitzvah of Brody Criz, whose invitation consists of him starring in a Jew-ified medley of pop-song parodies—including... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    June 13, 2014

A holiday is born: Red Army vets promote 'Rescue Day of European Jewry'

NEW YORK (JTA)-Sol Lapidus earned the Order of Lenin, the Soviet Union's highest medal, for his role as a partisan fighter in the Belarussian forest during World War II. Lapidus proudly wore the... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    Features    May 30, 2014

What do Rick Perry, Sean Penn, Sheldon Adelson and Chris Christie have in common?

NEW YORK (JTA)-The last time New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie spoke at a venue attended by Sheldon Adelson, he alienated the Republican Party mega-donor and other hawkish pro-Israel Jews by referring... Full story


With a nudge from advocates, more Jewish groups embracing paid parental leave

NEW YORK (JTA)-The United States is the only industrialized country in the world not to mandate paid maternity leave, and only 11 percent of private-sector American employees have access to it. But a... Full story


Dollinger, who rescued husband from Gestapo, dies at 111

NEW YORK (JTA)-Gisela Kohn Dollinger tricked death twice. Soon after Kristallnacht, when she was 36, Dollinger persuaded the Gestapo to release her husband, rather than send him to a concentration cam... Full story


'Anti-Barbie' is a runaway crowd-funding success

NEW YORK (JTA)-Almost exactly 55 years after Barbie made her debut at the American International Toy Fair, a more realistically proportioned alternative to the iconic fashion doll has become a... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    Features    March 7, 2014

Jewish communal awareness of disabilities is growing, but advocates say not enough

NEW YORK (JTA)-In the coming months, six young Jews with disabilities will start paid internships at major Jewish federations through a pilot program. If successful, the program will expand to communi... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    February 21, 2014

BunkConnect program offering bargains for first-time campers

NEW YORK (JTA)-Think Expedia or or countless other vacation discount finders online, but instead to connect kids to Jewish camps. The Foundation for Jewish Camp announced Monday that it is... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    January 17, 2014

Day schools trying to put new face on financial aid

NEW YORK (JTA)-Tehiyah Day School in El Cerrito, Calif., had a problem. Like many Jewish day schools throughout North America, Tehiyah has plenty of students from lower-income families and a number... Full story


Jet-setting Edgar Bronfman flexed muscles for Jewish causes

(JTA)-In 1992, Edgar Bronfman was preparing to leave North America for Paris for his first meeting with then-French President Francois Mitterand at the Elysee Palace when at the last minute Bronfman... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    January 3, 2014

Many U.S. Jewish cemeteries in neglect

NEW YORK (JTA)-For years, the historic Jewish cemetery was so overgrown with weeds, plagued by toppled headstones, and littered with fallen branches, beer cans and snack-food wrappers that at least a... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    December 20, 2013

Swarthmore Hillel picks fight over campus group's Israel guidelines

NEW YORK (JTA)-With an estimated Jewish population of 275 undergraduates, the Quaker-founded Swarthmore College outside Philadelphia is home to one of the smaller Hillel chapters in the country. But... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    December 20, 2013

Initiative seeking to improve Hebrew literacy in America

NEW YORK (JTA)-For the first 3 1/2 weeks of the summer, one group of 5-year-olds at Ramah Day Camp in Nyack, N.Y., was "very quiet" as the children went about the typical camp activities, according... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    December 20, 2013

Hoping to build 'relational' communities through better data

NEW YORK (JTA)—Before Sacha Litman shares his data analysis with his synagogue clients, he likes to have the board members and staff guess the contents. Which programs are most expensive and most popular? Who is more satisfied, senior citizens or n... Full story

 By Julie Wiener    News    December 13, 2013

Brooklyn school's failing grade unusual among Hebrew charter schools

NEW YORK (JTA)-On a bright autumn morning, Hebrew songs and phrases fill the sun-drenched, freshly painted blue and white classrooms of New York's Harlem Hebrew Language Academy Charter School. A... Full story


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