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Letters to the Editor

Last week's open letter to the Colorado Jewish community from Radio Chavura co-host Dean Rotbart sparked intense reactions from readers. Indeed, it was the most read and forwarded issue of the Radio Chavura newsletter since we began in July 2012.

Read what our subscribers had to say here.

Leonard Nimoy recording American Jewish Music from the Milken Archive 
Photo courtesy of Milken Family Foundation

In exclusive Radio Chavura interviews, Richard Sandler and Paul Schwendener of the Milken Archive of Jewish Music recall their unique collaboration with Leonard Nimoy z'l on American Jewish Music from the Milken Archive with Leonard Nimoy

Snow did not deter supporters of JEWISHcolorado from turning out in force for the annual CHOICES dinner.
Photo by Avital Rotbart

View 24 exclusive photos from the event, featuring speakers and guests, here.

Weddings, Engagements, Bat & Bar Mitzvah Photos from Photography by Avital. Click here
Kollel Poster

Are You a History Buff? Would You Like to Meet Other Jewish Fans of History? Click here
Hey Girl
A behind-the-scenes photo at the filming of Denver musician Julie Geller's newest music video, Hey Girl.
Photo by Avital Rotbart

View Julie's latest video here.


'Ages & Stages' discussion held February 19th.
Featuring Rachel Kodanaz (top left) and Jamie Sarche, (bottom right).

Photos by Avital Rotbart

Learn from the past, live for now, and anticipate the future by planning. See 45 exclusive photos from this enlightening event, here.

Were You There? Who Do You Recognize?

The Bubbes Jewish video awards were presented at The Jewish Experience's annual Wine & Cheese
Photo by Avital Rotbart

The red carpet was out for Colorado's Jewish filmmakers and supporters of The Jewish Experience on February 21st. See more than 200 exclusive photos from the event here.

Hank Greenberg

DAT HS Seniors
Senior Fever: Four DAT High School seniors try on their graduation gowns.
The school's graduation is scheduled for May 19th.
Reprinted from DAT High School newsletter. Photo by Naomi Lev

Photography by Avital
 Children * Parties * Graduations * Camps * Events * Reunions

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For Recent Audio Interviews on Radio Chavura, Click Here
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Dates To Note


  • TONIGHT: Author John Rosengren will discuss his book, Hank Greenberg: The Hero of Heroes.  7 pm. Jewish Community Center. Tickets at the door.  $10.  Under 18 years of age $5. Presented by B'nai B'rith Denver.  (See ad above)
  • Friday, March 6th - Temple Micah's Purim Jam - Hear Purim limericks and tunes. Free. 6:30 pm.  Bring your own dinner and arrive a little early to enjoy eating with others.
    Rabbi Joe Black
    Rabbi Joe Black
  • Wednesday, March 11th - DJDS Annual Dinner. Grand Hyatt Denver. 5:30 pm.
  • Saturday, March 14th - Rabbi Joe Black in Concert. A PJ Library Community Event. Temple Emanuel. 4 pm to 6 pm.
  • Sunday, March 15th - 11th Annual Mitzvah Mania. Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum.  1 pm to 4 pm.
  • Tuesday, March 17th - Denver Community Kollel's 17th Anniversary Celebration. Aish Denver. 6:30 pm. (See ad above)
  •  Friday, April 17th - Jewish National Fund Annual Breakfast. Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum.  7:30 am to 9:00 am. 


Letters to the Editor



An email to Radio Chavura's Dean Rotbart in response to his
February 22nd open letter to the Colorado Jewish community about security at the DAT High School.

View additional letters to the editor, and Dean Rotbart's replies, by clicking here.

SPECIAL REPORT: Netanyahu Speaks to Congress

  • Exclusive: Seven of Colorado's Nine Congressional Leaders To Attend
  • Commentary: Diana DeGette Set to Snub Israel
  • A Prominent Denver Rabbi's Call To Action
  • Elie Wiesel's Full-Page Ad in Support of Netanyahu

Colorado Votes on Netanyahu

By Maxwell Rotbart

Both of Colorado's U.S. Senators and five of our state's U.S. Representatives plan to attend Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to a Joint Session of Congress on March 3rd, based on interviews or exclusive email responses provided to Radio Chavura by all nine elected officials.

Only Congresswoman Diane DeGette (CO-01) confirmed she does not plan to attend, while Congressman Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) says he hasn't yet decided. 

The speech has become something of a litmus test for those in Congress measuring how fully they stand behind Israel, which has historically enjoyed strong bipartisan support in Congress.

A nuclear Iran is a red line issue. The Obama Administration has repeatedly pledged to Israel and the American public it will never permit Iran to cross that line and obtain the capability of producing nuclear weapons.

Yet part of what is prompting the urgency of Mr. Netanyahu's address before Congress are credible indications that the United States and the so-called P5+1 negotiating partners (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) now seem close to reaching an agreement with Iran that would leave Iran poised to go nuclear.

In a post on his Facebook page, Congressman Mike Coffman (CO-06), whose district includes Aurora, wrote, "shame on anyone, Republican or Democrat, who won't stand with our great friend and dearest ally."

Some influential senators and representatives have publicly decried Mr. Netanyahu's decision to speak despite the objections of the Obama Administration. Even a few prominent American Jewish leaders and organizations have discouraged him from appearing before Congress, fearful that his participation might jeopardize Israel's long-standing bipartisan support.

But Mr. Netanyahu, according to the Israeli press, has made it clear to his advisors that he considers America's softening resolve in negotiations with Iran, and the likelihood that Iran will soon obtain nuclear capability, to be an existential threat to the Jewish State.

Known as a dynamic speaker, Mr. Netanyahu will no doubt not only spell out why he believes the survival of the State of Israel is at stake, but also why Iran poses a regional and global threat.

Iran's leaders have repeatedly called for Israel to be "wiped off the map," and Iran is already testing missiles capable of delivering weapons of mass destruction to Europe and the United States.

To read an extended version of this article, including comments from Senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner, and Representatives Ken Buck and Doug Lamborn, click here.Degette_snub

Commentary: DeGette Poised to Snub Israel
And Her Many Pro-Israel Constituents
Congressman Fred Upton (R-MI) and Congresswoman Diana DeGette
In a video discussing the 21st Century Cures initiative
By Dean Rotbart

Colorado Congresswoman Diana DeGette's veiled excuse for snubbing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu when he addresses a Joint Session of the U.S. Congress on March 3rd is so flimsy as to be fully transparent.

Her decision is pure, grotesquely partisan politics and a slap in the face to the thousands of pro-Israel constituents - both Jewish and non-Jewish alike - who have helped elect Congresswoman DeGette to office nine consecutive times.

A large percentage of greater-Denver's pro-Israel voters live in Congresswoman DeGette's 1st Congressional District. DeGette, a Democrat, has held the seat since 1997, when she succeeded Patricia Schroeder.

DeGette is a Congresswoman of national stature, serving as a chief deputy whip and as a member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

Her actions - and in this instance, blatant inaction - reflect not only on her home district, but also on Congress as a whole.

While Prime Minister Netanyahu's remarks next month before Congress will be the most important in Israel's 66-year history, Congresswoman DeGette will be a very visible no show.

This past Friday (February 13th), Congresswoman DeGette's office confirmed to Radio Chavura that she doesn't plan to attend Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech due to a scheduling conflict.

To read the full version of this commentary, including statements from Congresswoman DeGette's staff, click here.Alter

Rabbi Daniel Alter Calls on Community to Contact DeGette and Perlmutter


In an email sent February 16th to members of the DAT Minyan, Rabbi Daniel Alter encouraged members of the community to contact Representatives Diana DeGette and Ed Perlmutter and ask them to attend Prime Minister Netanyahu's address to a Joint Session of Congress on March 3rd.  Congresswoman DeGette told Radio Chavura she will not attend, while Congressman Perlmutter told Radio Chavura he is still undecided.

"Unfortunately, our own representative, Mrs. Diana DeGette, is the only representative from Colorado who at this time has no intent to attend," Rabbi Alter wrote. "I just sent a letter to her office asking that she reconsider what I believe to be a mistake."
Rabbi Daniel Alter
Rabbi Alter

Rabbi Alter acknowledged that while not all Jews may be supportive of the way that Mr. Netanyahu came to speak before Congress, "at this point in time, having a number of members of Congress boycott his speech (especially if they are almost all from one party) would be bad for Israel, bad four our country and bad for the US-Israel relationship." 

Rabbi Alter, who has been head of the Denver Academy of Torah since 2006, and his wife, Rivka, were honored at the school's 22nd Annual Gala, held on February 23rd.

Rabbi Alter provided Congresswoman DeGette's local contact information:
Denver Office
600 Grant Street, Suite 202
Denver, CO 80203-3525

Elie Wiesel: "Will You Join Me....?"

Nobel Peace Prize winner and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel says he will attend Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech before Congress. In full-page ads run in major newspapers earlier this month he asked people of good conscious to show their support for Mr. Netanyahu and for Israel's right to protect itself against the Hamans of our age.

"President Obama, Vice President Biden, distinguished members of Congress, I ask you - As one who has seen the enemies of the Jewish people make good on threats to exterminate us, how can I remain silent," Wiesel asks. "As Queen Esther said when addressing her King: 'How can I behold the destruction of my people?'"

Photography by Avital
 Children * Parties * Graduations * Camps * Events * Reunions

Gift Cards Now Available - Give the Gift of Lifetime Memories!

Contact Avital by email at 1-844-2-AVITAL (228-4825) or
Visit her new website: to learn more.

Today marks 10,692 days since Jonathan Pollard ( was imprisoned in the United States. That's more than 30 years behind bars!  The median sentence for the offense Pollard committed - one count of passing classified information to an ally - is 2 to 4 years. 

Read Maxwell Rotbart's column, Separating fact from fiction about Jonathan Pollard, on

Please click on the images below to show your support for each of Denver's top-tier Jewish day schools: