Good morning, New York. Today, New York City will begin requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccinations for a range of activities, including dining at an indoor restaurant, working out at a gym or strolling through a museum. (Enforcement will not begin, however, until Sept.13, to allow businesses time to develop plans for the change.)
YOUR MOMENT OF (JEWISH) ZEN
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer can be seen rapping alongside Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. at Sunday’s “It’s Time For Hip Hop In NYC” series in The Bronx.
- Watch the video here.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK
A woman is suing Bob Dylan for sexually abusing her when she was 12 under a New York law that temporarily lifted limitations on such lawsuits.
- The woman, identified in court documents as JC, says the Jewish rock star groomed and exploited her in his room at the Chelsea Hotel over six weeks in 1965, when Dylan was 24, USA Today reported on Monday. She says she suffered physical and psychological harm.
- A lawyer for Dylan vigorously denied the charges, the newspaper reported.
- The New York State legislature, in the wake of the #MeToo movement exposing the exploitation of women, in 2019 passed the Child Victims Act, allowing people to sue their alleged assailants for a window of time, which ended Saturday. The woman filed the lawsuit the day before.
Christopher Massimine, a theater executive who had helped to revitalize the Folksbiene, the NY-based Yiddish theater company, resigned as the managing director of the Pioneer Theater Company in Salt Lake City after reports that he had embellished his resume.
- Salt Lake City’s Fox affiliate KSTU-TV reported earlier this year that Massimine did not have a master’s degree from New York University, as he claimed. In addition, he was never a full-time employee of the Dramatists Guild, wasn’t born in Italy, and the national organization that he claimed gave him a national arts advocacy award does not appear to exist, The New York Times reported.
- Massimime left the Folksbiene in 2019, after a seven-year run as the company’s first non-Jewish CEO that included the Off-Broadway success of “Fiddler on the Roof” in Yiddish. Sources told The Times he left after having invested theater funds in an unrelated production without authorization.
- Quotable: “He did a great deal to raise the profile of the company and was sometimes prone to exaggeration, which I have learned is typically a tool of impresarios and showmen,” said Beck Lee, who served as a publicist for the Folksbiene during much of Massimine’s tenure.
Brooklyn native Herman Edel, who served as mayor of Aspen, Colorado, from 1979 to 1983, died Friday in Ashland, Oregon. He was 95. Edel was one of the founders of the original synagogue in Aspen, securing its first Torah from an organization in London that rescued Torahs seized by the Nazis during World War II. Edel also turned down what he said was a bribe from Donald Trump. According to Edel, the future president said the then mayor would get “many, many shekels” if he okayed a a large hotel at the base of Aspen Mountain. “I was mad at him for one, bringing in my Jewish heritage, which is none of his f-ing business and for trying to bribe me,” he told an interviewer in 2016.
TODAY’S BIG IDEA
Losing Afghanistan: A former staff writer for The Jewish Week recalls taking part in a 2001 junket intended to “show the people of Afghanistan that Americans, including those closest to those killed in the 9/11 attack, bore them no ill will.” At the time, Larry Cohler-Esses writes in the Forward, “I feared what would follow as tens of thousands of similarly well-intentioned American troops and officials were primed to come in after them. Would this end like Vietnam, I wondered?”
REAL ESTATE NEWS
The Shefa School, the Jewish community day school for children with language-based learning disabilities, plans to move to a new building at the beginning of school in 2023.
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- The 12-story building at 17 West 60th Street is located across from Columbus Circle and Central Park. It will allow Shefa to increase its capacity to nearly 350 students – up from 200 this fall.
- The school has launched a capital campaign to renovate the space.
Exterior work is approaching completion on a 14-story Upper West Side condominium that will house Shaare Zedek Synagogue and, pending negotiations, Kehilat Hadar on its first floor, YIMBY reports.
- The congregation won approval in 2019 to sell its building at 212 West 93rd St. to the condo developers. The demolished building was constructed in the early 1920’s and dedicated in 1923.
PEOPLE & PLACES
Local music fans and philanthropists celebrated UJA-Federation of New York’s Al Berg Summerfest Concert on Wed., Aug. 11 at the Arts Plaza Lawn of Tilles Center LIU Post. The outdoor event, which returned in-person after last year’s virtual festivities, raised funds to support UJA’s annual campaign.
- The annual celebration, offered through UJA-Federation’s New Leadership Campaign, recognized a number of local community leaders for their efforts during the last 18 months of the pandemic through UJA’s partner Jewish Community Centers: Adam Cole of Commack; Stephanie Faust of Roslyn; Yehuda Mor of Atlantic Beach; Fred Richman of Jericho; Shauna Richman of Jericho; and Jim Wagler of Fresh Meadows.
The National Endowment for the Humanities announced a grant for preservation of materials documenting the 123-year history of the Forward, the Jewish newspaper.
- In New York, 35 projects at the state’s cultural organizations will receive $3.6 million in NEH grants.
WHAT’S ON TODAY
Sarit Yishai-Levi discusses her debut novel “The Beauty Queen of Jerusalem,” and the new Israeli TV series based on it, with journalist and author Sandee Brawarsky. Yishai-Levi will talk about growing up in a seventh-generation Jerusalem family, her transformation from journalist to novelist and watching her characters come to life in an eagerly anticipated drama. Register for this Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center event here. 11:30 a.m.
Israel Policy Forum presents a video briefing on Iran, Hezbollah and other regional Islamist actors, featuring Atlantic Council Nonresident Fellow David Daoud and Israel Policy Forum Policy Advisor Neri Zilber. Register here. 2:00 p.m.
Photo, top: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (center) raps alongside Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. (in blue shirt) at a “It’s Time For Hip Hop In NYC” concert in The Bronx, Aug. 15, 2021. (Courtesy @rubendiazjr)