Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

By Gloria Yousha
Scene Around 

Scene Around


Rachel Shipley

"Start in your own backyard"...

That sounded like a solid piece of advice so I am going to reach out via this column. With all the reports of stolen passports in the news lately, I decided to look for my own passport just to make sure it was safe. During my search I came upon a paper with a piece of information that I want to check out. It contained the names Boris and Rebecca Berestesky, Montreal, Canada, and said that they were the people who sent steamship ticket money to my maternal grandparents to flee Ukraine for Canada just before the turn of the last century. It also said that Rebecca was my Grandmother's sister. Thanks to that voyage, my grandparents, Jerome and Dora Elick (changed to Alicke, probably by Canadian immigration authorities) and their young son, Jack and young daughter, Betty, made their home in Montreal, where, in 1908, my mom, Sally, was born.

I have family members trying to find out if children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc., exist for these people. But I was told to start in my own backyard. If you know of anything pertaining to this matter, contact me.

Three cities I consider "home"...

One is New York City (Brooklyn) where I was born and raised; then there is Winter Park, where my spouse and I lived for decades and raised our family; and there is Sao Paulo, Brazil, where I left a piece of my heart.

I read this recently in the Lubavitch International News (from the Chabad-Lubavitch Global Network): "With the opening in December of the new ten Yad Jewish Center in Sao Paulo, Brazil, the acclaimed soup kitchen has evolved and grown. Now the social services arm of Chabad of Sao Paulo is providing access to the kinds of benefits that will raise the quality of life for the city's struggling Jewish population."

Did you know that Chabad-Lubavitch is making life better for Jews all around the world? They are. Would you believe, even Russia and Germany? (Believe... because they are!) You can talk to our local Chabad-Lubavitch rabbis to see how you can help their causes, or you can send a donation to Lubavitch International, Machne Israel, 770 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11213-9817.

Everyone needs a Jewish Mother...

I received this email this morning. I pass it on to you: "To be a life coach," says RACHEL SHIPLEY. "You have to know life-and have lived it. Some take a course and get initials after their name. So nu, I've got initials after my name: E.J.M. That stands for Experienced Jewish Mother." And with that statement, Rachel is launching yet another career to add to her list: mother of four, grandmother of five, veteran of RCA records and nightclubs with sister LYNN, networking guru, counselor to prime ministers, and president of Trading Wise, Inc., an international marketing company. "Listen," says Rachel, leaning in, "everybody needs a Jewish mother. We are famous for listening, being sympathetic and giving some very solid advice. We provide a good ear, a shoulder to lean or cry on and in a pinch, chicken soup." Rachel ticks off her qualifications. "I've been in business, raised my family, worked internationally, run charitable events and dispensed advice for years. So now, I'm-you could say-formalizing the process. I call it 'Write Your Next Chapter' when you are ready-let me help you turn the page." Rachel says that the key to being a good counselor is listening well and helping people really solve their own problems. "I can ask the right questions and help them on their way. To me, the next chapter is always the most exciting." (I know Rachel personally... she is wonderful, bright, caring, super-smart, a caregiver extraordinaire... I aspire to be like her. That is probably the highest compliment I can give her... and she deserves all the compliments she gets!) To learn more about Rachel's talents, go to her website: http://www.writeyournextchapter.com.

Knitting for happiness...

You know by now how much I enjoy telling you about wonderful people who do wonderful things. I just had that opportunity with Rachel Shipley and now I received another email... this one from NANCY LUDIN, executive director of the Jewish Pavilion. Read on: "JUDY COHEN adds sunshine to our day when she arrives at the Jewish Pavilion carrying home-knit blankets for seniors who reside in long-term care. The residents so appreciate the gifts, and believe it or not, they are often cold, even in Florida. Special thanks to Judy and all the gals who knit for the Jewish Pavilion (JO FISCHER, SHARON SISSELSKY, LILLIAN TOBIA and SHIRLEY KATZ.)"

(Gee, I know how to crochet Granny Squares! Although my fingers are usually too cold to crochet, even in Florida!)

"Don't cry for me, Argentina"...

Can you guess? It's true... the fabulous musical EVITA is opening up at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, March 25. EVITA tells Eva's passionate and tragic story through Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber's most dazzling and beloved score, including "Don't Cry for Me Argentina," "Another Suitcase in Another Hall" and "High Flying Adored," together with "You Must Love Me," the Oscar-winning hit from the film EVITA. After researching the life of Eva Peron for many years, Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber released EVITA in 1976 as a concept album with Julie Covington as Eva and it became a worldwide hit. Soon after, the production debuted on stage in London's West End starring Elaine Paige and directed by Hal Prince.

The production transferred to Broadway and opened in 1979 starring Patti LuPone, who went on to win one of the seven 1980 Tony Awards the show earned.

This has been followed by a string of professional tours and worldwide productions and numerous cast albums, as well as a major 1996 film of the musical starring Madonna and Antonio Banderas. The musical was revived in London in 2006, and on Broadway in 2012. And now it is coming to town presented by the Florida Theatrical Association.

To purchase tickets, phone 1-800-430 8903.

More wonderful entertainment...

Following rave reviews, enthusiastic audiences and sold-out performances, SPANK! The Fifty Shades Parody has added another three weeks of performances at The Abbey in downtown Orlando. Previously scheduled to close on March 23, the show will now run through April 13.

Tickets to SPANK! can be purchased at TicketWeb.com or by calling 1-866-468-7630. To purchase tickets in person, visit the Orlando Broadway box office located at 100 South Eola Drive, Suite 101, in downtown Orlando. Groups of eight or more can purchase tickets by calling 407-704-6116. General admission tickets for SPANK! are $40 and Table seating ranges from $50-$60. VIP tickets are also available for $75 and include upfront table seating, a complimentary glass of wine, a cast meet & greet and a signed poster from the cast.

Judy Cohen holding knit blanket

One for the road...

Hymie enters a Catholic church and confronts the priest.

"I am 93 years old. My wife is 91. We have been happily married for 64 years. Last week I had crazy, joyous sex with a 27-year-old supermodel."

The priest is aghast.

"Why don't you go to confession, old man?"

Hymie replies, "Why should a Jewish man such as myself go to confession?"

The priest is confused.

"If you're Jewish, why then are you telling me this story?"

Hymie replies, "I'm telling everyone!"

(He should be proud... after all he could have keeled over from a heart attack!)


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