Boca temple's upcoming events vary from fundraiser to Nuremberg discussion

Two events including an April 7 fundraiser at 6:30 p.m. titled Beth El Bash and an April 13 luncheon at noon titled Project Nuremberg Lawyers Luncheon will both be taking place at Temple Beth El In Boca Raton.

Beth El Bash will feature comedian Dave Barry in an evening of laughter, dancing and dining in support of the temple's financial and scholarship programs.

Barry, known both for his many books, such as "For This We Left Egypt?: A Passover Haggadah For Jews and Those Who Love Them" (2017), as well as his many humorous columns for the Miami Herald (1983-2005), also performs as a stand up comic.

"I've performed comedy in front of various audiences, including synagogues, for many years. I do spend time preparing and tailoring the performances for the specific audience," said Barry.

He especially relishes performing for Jewish audiences.

"I especially enjoy Jewish audiences because a) they (Jews) usually have a good sense of humor and b) there are certain humor topics that they get that nobody else does," said Barry.

Barry has focused on humorous anecdotes based on his life in his books and columns. His tales include Barry's comic look at his family's trip to Israel, his daughter's bat mitzvah, going to synagogue over the High Holy Days, his Passover seder and the bris (birth) of his Jewish grandson, among other stories.

The son of a Presbyterian minister, the 70-year-old Barry is married to a Jewish woman and is a member of Temple Judea in Coral Gables.

"Dave Barry is so funny and is a big attraction for the Beth El Bash," said Lesley Viselman, director of Development at Temple Beth El.

The Project Nuremberg Lawyers Luncheon will feature Florida Judge Milton Hirsch and Dr. Robert Watson of Lynn University, known for his best selling book "The Nazi Titanic: The Incredible Untold Story of a Doomed Ship In World War II " (2016).

The luncheon series began in 2009 through the determination and insight of Temple Beth El Rabbi Jessica Spitalnic Brockman.

"Ten years ago, I rescued a set of the Blue Series, the record of the Nuremberg Trials of the Nazis after World War II. Lynn University was digitizing the series for their library and would have disposed the original set of books," said Brockman.

"I studied these books with lawyers and out of this has blossomed nine years of our annual luncheon, with an incredible partnership between Temple Beth El and Lynn University to discuss the impact of the Nuremberg Trials."

"Law is the only thing that could bring order to a post-Holocaust Europe," said Brockman.

Past distinguished speakers in the series included Alan Dershowitz and Jewish History Professor Deborah Lipstadt.

Watson will shed light to attendees that, in 1945, Adolf Hitler and the Nazis had a plan to kill thousands of concentration camp prisoners on the "Cap Arcona" ship, as he wrote in his book "The Nazi Titanic."

"Hitler loaded the boat with thousands of prisoners and planned to send a U-boat to blow up the 'Cap Arcona.' Although Hitler chose to commit suicide rather than participate in a peace treaty in 1945, his plan of destroying 'Cap Arcona' and killing thousands was still carried out by the Nazis," said Watson.

For tickets and more information about both events at Temple Beth El, 333 SW 4th Boca Raton, call 561-391-8900 or go to