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A Day in the Catskills

For almost half a century, the Catskills—known lovingly as the Borscht Belt—was a thriving oasis for Jewish vacationers, with grand hotels, luxe amenities and headlining entertainment. But affordable air travel to other destinations became available, and suddenly the area was no longer the “go-to” vacation spot. The majestic resorts of “the Jewish Alps,” totally abandoned and exposed to the elements, eroded down to shells of their former glory.

The grand resorts are gone, but their impact, memory and place in history are still very much alive.

Join us for an afternoon “trip” to the Catskills where:

  • Photographer Marisa Scheinfeld will present her traveling exhibition and book, The Borscht Belt; Revisiting the Remains of America’s Jewish Vacation Land, featuring photos of the once-dazzling hotels.
  • Filmmaker Lawrence Richards will show excerpts from his film, When Comedy Went to School, featuring Catskills comedy legends, followed by a Q&A.
  • Author Stephen M. Silverman sets the context, history and timeline of the area with excerpts from his book The Catskills: Its History and How It Changed America.
  • And since no “trip” to the Catskills is complete without food, an optional lunch, catered by Russ & Daughters Café, will be served (borscht included!).






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