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August 8, 2014     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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August 8, 2014

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, AUGUST 8, 2014 PAGE 3A By Christine DeSouza Assistanat Editor If someone needs to get something done in Cassel- berry, call Sandi Solomon. Running for her third term as Casselberry city commis- sioner seat 3, Solomon has that rare ability to see what needs to be done and gets it done. Eight years ago, Solomon retired after 35 years of teaching elementary school in Seminole County. Won- dering what she was going to do, she took a month-long trip to Israel. It wasn't her first trip--she's been four times--and probably won't be her last. In fact, she says, "If I could go tonight, I would!" Returning from Israel, she went to a Casselberry City Hall meeting. The discus- sion was about .getting rid of the adult entertainment industry that was choking the life out of this formerly quaint little city. "When we first moved here 40 years ago, Casselberrywas a very nice place," Solomon said. "Over the years the commissioners allowed adult entertainment to flourish, which caused Casselberry to go downhill to the point that, when I retired, people were telling me they didn't want to say they lived in Casselberry! They'd say they lived in Seminole County." Solomon said she's spent 35 years !'fixing up children" so now she would "fix up Casselberry." And with her energetic, "can-do" spirit, she has been doing just that. "I wanted to make it Sandi Solomon into the place I moved to," she said. "And now, in the last eight years since I was elected, I feel I've made a difference. Anybody who drives through notices that Casselberry looks great!" she said with pride, adding, "I wish I'd gotten involved sooner!" Solomon can only serve three four-year terms. This will be her final term if re- elected, and she has so much still she hopes to bring to fruition. During her first two terms, she pushed through most of the changes people see and enjoy around Casselberry. Solomon is responsible for the creation ofabike trail in Casselberry. "We didn't have a bike trail, so I called city commissioners and asked how come? Altamonte, Lake Mary, Winter Springs and Winter Park have one, why not US?" As it turned out, 1 mil- lion dollars was sitting in the bank designated for a bike trail just waiting for someone to ask for it. "SO I asked for it!" Solomon said with a smile. The lakes were also cleaned up--all 14of them andnow kayaks and canoes are rowed on them. They even have a "Runyak Race" at Secret Lake Parkthis year will mark the thirdannual event on Aug. 23. Solomon also was instru- mental in having over 2,000 new trees planted in the city, resulting in Casseiberry be- ing named a Tree City USA community by the Arbor Day Foundation to honor its commitment to community forestry. It is the 5th year the Cityof Casselberry has received this national rec- ognition. Another creation was the Casselberry Art House behind City Hall where several art classes are offered to all ages and abilities. In addition to these "curb appeal" features, Cassel- berry's roads and sidewalks have all been resurfaced and refinished. "All this was done - and there is still money in the bank!" Solomon said. Now there are three major projects in the works that Solomon had a hand in be- ginning and she'd like to see them finished: Bringing Seminole State College Center for the Arts to Casselberry. About five months ago, Solomon found out that WalMart owns the property on 17/92 near Books A Million. They wanted to build a store there, but be- cause of the fly over, it wasn't feasible. When she learned WalMart put it up for sale, she thought it would make a great college campus She Contacted Congressman John Mica and Seminole State College President Dr. E. Ann McGee. After much discussion, this past week the Seminole State board agreed to the plan, and Solomon is getting ready to go to Arkansas to meet with WalMart's board about the property. "It's 22 acres from 17/92 to the library - perfect for a college campus," she said. Temple L'Chayim, a Re- form congregation in Cl- ermont, has engaged the services of Rabbi Howard Schwartz and Cantor Isaac Kriger to lead the congrega- tion for this year's High Holi- day set'vices. The two clergy will provide "a very special blend for the spirituality and musical enhancement of the services." Rabbi Schwartz, a native of Miami, comes to Temple L'Chayim with a wide rab- binical background. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in Hebrew Letters from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati. Ohio. He has served as rabbi for Temple Beth Torah in Dix Hills, Long Island; Temple Emanu-EI in Utica, N.Y.; and Temple Beth EI in Corpus Christi, Texas. After becoming a Jewish chaplain in the U.S. Army, Rabbi Schwartz held assign- ments in Stuttgart Germany; Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; and Eisenhower Army Medi- cal Center at Fort Gordon. He retired as a Chaplain Major of the U.S. Army. Cantor Kriger was born in Monterrey, Mexico, of Lithu- anian parents and received his formal education in Los Angeles, CA. He spent two years under contract with the Israel National Opera as The second major project is keeping the Casseiberry Golf Course Green. "The golf course is up for sale, and we want to buy it because we do not want development on it. We will either keep it as a golf course or turn it into a walking and bike trail - keep it green!" she saidwith much enthusiasm. The third major project is completing Casselberry's City Center. There are 20 acres between the Method- ist Church and City Hall on 17/92. "We are planning two football size lakes with trails and sculpture and two new parks to hold music events there," she stated. Solomon and her husband, Irving, are members of Congregation Ohev Shalom, and three years ago, she and several other Jewish and Christianwomen founded the Zionistas. an organization that supports Israel. Early voting begins Aug. 16 and runs through Aug. 24. Polls are open Aug. 26. e Cantor Isaac Kriger and Rabbi Howard Schwartz. a principal lead tenor, then continuing his career as an opera and concert singer in Europe and the U.S.A. He has appeared in concert at Lin- coln Center and on national television on "The Jewish Entertainment Hour" His credits also include a Solo concert recital broadcast for Austrian National Ra- dio, the soundtrack for the Hollywood movie "Happy" starring Dom DeLuise, and the first CD recording of the "John F. Kennedy Requiem" Cantor Kriger received his cantorial training under the tutelage of the eminent Polish Cantor, Moshe Semi- gran. in Boston, MA, where he learned to daven in both the traditional and contem- porary styles of nusach. He has over 25 years of Canto- rial experience, officiating in both the Reform and Conservative movements in the Boston area, Southern California, the Northeast United States, Las Vegas, and Florida. Tickets are for complete Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services at $75 per person for nonmembers of Temple L'Chayim For ticket information please call Nathan Axe1352- 242-6135 Soldiers who received care packages at the Gaza border hold up a sign that says 'IDF Thanks the Konikovs and Chabad of South Orlando.' A few weeks ago, Rabbi Yosef Konikov and his wife, Chani, had a conversation, as many Jewish people have over the last month, about what we can do for Israel. Chabad of South Orlando contacted some close friends and asked would they be willing to be the last people the soldiers see before they go to battle? Would they be the" first people the soldiers see when they return? They said yes. So, Chabad has been raising moneyhere and sending it to Israel. Their representatives on the ground, Yuda Meer and Folli Tesler, have taken this money and "found the cheapest places to buy what the soldiers want and give it to them." Last Sunday, Chabad of South Orlando organized an even to boost the morale of the soldiers and they will distribute: 1,000 pairs of underwear t,000 undershirts 2,000 socks 1,000 Tzitzit 5,000 sandwiches 3,600 energy drinks Thousands of bottles of shampoo, deoderant, soap, towels, and packages of baby wipes With the help and partner-. ship of these friends on the ground in Israel, Chabad of South Orlando continues to deliver care packages to IDF soldiers stationed On the Gaza border. "There is no doubt that this will raise morale and help the troops prepare themselves to protect Am Yisroel," Rabbi Konikov said. Any who would like to donate to these care pack- ages, please contact Chabad at Jewish Museum Florida-FIU CURRENT EXHIBITIONS ......... t~V~ LZ~J~ ........... ~ H~T .. ~ Kt*~t~ CINEMA JUDAICA: The War Years 1939-1949 On view t hrou hAugust:24&2014 GROWERS, GROCERS, & GEFILTE FISH: A Gastronomic Look at Florida Jews & Food On view through October 5, 2014 30i Washington Avenue ~.~:~l Miami Beach, FL 33139 ~"~EI~ .... ~ ~ ..... ~'.~ ~v',lAMi BEACH "'"~:,~';:C'"; 305.672.5044 dewishMuseum corn Jewish Museum info@jewishmuseum,com ~ : ~: :G~ a~mi~sion ~)!! ,r~ wththisad i of Florida Open Tuesday-Sunday 10am - 5prTI .... ~ ,~,. : The Museum is supported by individual contributions, foundations, memberships and grants from the State of Florida, Depadment of State. 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