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Tag Archives: Indianapolis

The Klene Family: Understanding Community at the J

Erica, Colton, Bauer, Brooks and Frank Klene at the CampJCC playground

Summer is fast approaching at the JCC, and that doesn’t just mean the Eskenazi Water Park will be opening soon! For families like the Klenes, it means that CampJCC (the J’s summer day camp for kids in grades K-7) is just around the corner. The Klenes at the JCC The Klene family has trusted CampJCC to entertain their energetic older …

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Passover Seder with the Cohens

(Published March 29, 2022 for April 2022 eZine) This month, the Jewish members at the JCC will celebrate Passover with family and friends. For most, that means celebrating at least one night of the Seder ritual – coming together to eat, laugh and share in the Jewish tradition. For the Cohen family, that is no different. JCC board member Jeff …

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Tim Bass, Teaching Boisterously

Walk down the JCC’s fitness hallway on a Monday evening or Saturday morning, and you’ll hear music blasting, laughing and cheering, and people generally sounding like they’ve having the time of their lives. That would be the J’s Total Body BoxJump Group Exercise class, led by instructor Tim Bass. Four years ago, Tim suffered a heart attack at 53 years …

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Andrew Bowman is Living History

Andrew Bowman, an elderly black man, wearing a Civil War uniform and carrying the flag bearing the name of the regiment his grandfather, Andrew Jackson Smith, belonged to

(Published Jan 25, 2022) When Andrew Bowman first heard about his grandfather Andrew Jackson Smith’s Civil War heroics, even he didn’t believe it. “My mother’s a good storyteller,” he said, “and we always thought [her tales] were so outlandish. We joked about her being from “Lyin'” County, Kentucky [as opposed to its real name, Lyon County] because her stories were, …

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From Ballet to Boxing with Allison Weinkein

(Published Dec 28, 2021) These days, Allison Weinkein works out in the Mordoh Fitness Center as often as she can, averaging about four or five days a week. But it wasn’t always that way. “[Now] I get that little workout high that a lot of people talk about that I never believed. It ended up I was just doing the …

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The Erdel Family’s Decade at the J

A mosaic featuring photos of the Erdel family

(Published April 26, 2021) To understand just how at home the Erdel kids feel at the J, one only had to watch them as they arrived at the Sablosky Pavilion, the location for the (masked and socially distanced) interview and photo shoot to prep this piece. Audrey (9) and Evan (7) immediately ran over to picnic tables their Summer Care …

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Filiberto Learns to Swim

Filiberto Cruz Mancera (Hispanic man in his 40s) in the Regenstrief Natatorium

(Published March 25, 2021) Growing up in Mexico, Filiberto Cruz Mancera loved sports. Basketball, volleyball, almost anything athletic – except swimming. When Filiberto was about six years old, his younger brother fell into and was swept away in the strong current of a creek where Filiberto, his brother and an older sister were playing. Filiberto and his sister frantically chased …

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Joe Johnson is All Heart

Joe Johnson (a mustached Black man in his 60s wearing a yellow shirt) working out on a machine in the Mordoh Fitness Center

(Published Jan 25, 2021) To look at Joe Johnson, you might not guess that he had a heart transplant just over 11 years ago. The way he tells it, his exercise routine hasn’t even changed that much from before the transplant: “It’s just that I can do more reps now. I got stronger.” Making sure that new heart stays healthy …

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George Heslin, Firefighter-in-Training

George Heslin (a 23-year-old white man with dark hair and large arm muscles) in the Mordoh Fitness Center training to become a firefighter - climbing a Stairmaster wearing extra weight on his back, pushing a heavy weight around the track, and lifting a barbell, all while wearing a mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

(Published Dec 28, 2020) George Heslin has enjoyed the J’s facilities recreationally for years — at summer camp as a child and more recently utilizing the gym and the pool as he tried on teaching and culinary careers before realizing they were not what he wanted. But as he embarks upon his journey to becoming a firefighter, the JCC (and …

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