Friday, January 29, 2010

Weekly Report 1.29.10

It’s cold outside, but things are heating up inside the Museum as we gear up for our fiftieth anniversary celebrations. Here are some highlights.


Ilene Dackman-Alon and the rest of the program staff continue to work on our spring, summer, and fall calendars, with special to attention to the upcoming opening of The Synagogue Speaks exhibition on 21 March. Deborah Cardin and Simone Ellin are working with the Lloyd Street Rededication Committee to plan our synagogue rededication events. Simone is working on press materials for The Synagogue Speaks, and Lauren Silberman is designing invitations, press kits, and ads for upcoming programs and exhibitions.

This week, Ilene attended a committee meeting at the Center for Jewish Education for the upcoming community-wide program, The Amazing Race, which will take place on Sunday 2 May. Based on the popular and highly acclaimed reality TV show, the program engages participants in competitive activities that highlight the variety of connections between Baltimore and Israel. The Amazing Race is part of CJE’s Reveal Israel project, funded by the Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Fund for the Enrichment of Jewish Education and planned in conjunction with Melitz: Centers for Jewish Zionist Education.

Simone and the web team hired a new vendor, Whiteboard Media, to put the finishing touches on our beautiful new website. Simone also participated in a meeting about the Chosen Food exhibition website.


Thirty students and parents participating in the Lessons of the Shoah high school interfaith program visited the JMM on Sunday 24 January. During their visit they learned about basic tenets of Judaism through a tour of our historic synagogues led by JMM docent Alvin Fisher. They also participated in small group conversations so that Jewish students could share their personal observances of Judaism with their peers. Our next program is a visit to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum scheduled for Sunday 7 February.

On Monday, City Neighbors Charter School (Baltimore City Public School) brought 15 students and teachers to tour the Museum. On Wednesday, Friendship Heights Community Center brought 21 adults to participate in a tour. On Thursday, Beth Tfiloh brought their 6th graders to see the Lloyd Street Synagogue and the Voices of Lombard Street exhibition as the first stop of a day-long trip through Jewish Baltimore.

Yesterday, 48 teachers participated in a teacher training workshop at the JMM on the topic of Anne Frank and Beyond: Using Diaries to Teach About the Holocaust. Most of the teachers were from Baltimore City public schools, though educators from other school districts, independent schools, Catholic schools, and home school families also attended. Christina Chavarria from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum facilitated the morning sessions. The afternoon portion of the program included a diary making workshop led by local artist Sara Glik, followed by a dramatic reading of Words That Burn Within Me, a book of poetry by Holocaust survivor Hilda Stern Cohen read by her husband Dr. Werner Cohen and friend Rosemary Warschawski. Teachers also had the opportunity to learn about JMM educational programs.


Deb Weiner gave a presentation to the Friends of Chevrah Thelim in Norfolk, Va., on Sunday, on the topic of Coalfield Jews: Immigration and Continuity.

On Tuesday, Lauren Silberman spoke to 16 current fine arts and art history students at her alma mater, George Washington University, regarding career choices in the arts. She was one of five panelists.

Harvey Schwartz, volunteer and docent both at the JMM and at the United States National Park at Ft. McHenry, gave a talk titled The Jews of Fort McHenry to the Baltimore Lodge of B’nai Brith. The presentation was a program of the JMM Speakers Bureau, which is generously sponsored by Attman’s Delicatessen.


A centerpiece of our fiftieth anniversary commemorations is Telling Time, a major oral history initiative. We’re currently recruiting interviewers to help us collect fifty interviews in 2010. The completed interviews will become a permanent part of the Museum’s archive. Response so far has been very positive, but we can always use more interviewers, so please consider participating.

We will be hosting our first oral history training session on Sunday 28 February (snow date 14 March). For more information or to sign up for a training session, please contact Jobi Zink at or 410-732-6400, ext. 226.

Best wishes for the weekend.

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