The program, which runs from Friday, June 29, to Sunday, July 1, features a number of speakers with whom I have become well familiar since taking over sports at the paper, as well as others I look forward to meeting for the first time.
Among the All-Star lineup of folks who will be shepping nachas about the National Pastime:
* Martin Abramowitz, creator of the Jewish Major Leaguer card set;
* Ambassador Dan Kurtzer, who served as commissioner for the short-lived Israel Baseball League;
* authors Howard Megdal (The Baseball Talmud), Peter Levine (Ellis Island to Ebbets Field: Sport and the American Jewish Experience), Rabbi Rebecca Alpert (Out of Left Field: Jews and Black Baseball), and Arthur Kurzweil (Torah for Dummies);
* sportswriter Stan Hochman of the Philadelphia Daily News;
* writer/performer Mikhail Horowitz;
* Bob Ruxin, a consultant to the IBL and author of An Athlete’s Guide to Agents.
The program features such thought-provoking topics as:
* “If the Talmud Contains Everything, What Does the Talmud Say About Baseball?”
* “Yom Kippur on the Diamond from Greenberg to Braun”
* “The Mystical Connections Between Judaism and Baseball”
* “Baseball as the Great Assimilator: Is it still that way?”
* A plenary on “Why ask ‘Who’s a Jew?’ in baseball”
* “Jewish Women as Baseball Fans”
* The Responsibility of Jews in Baseball”
Also on the schedule: an interactive mock draft of Jewish baseball players, a rendition of “Yiddishe Casey at the Bat,” a concert of baseball songs by Dan Bern, and a screening of the feature film The Yankels.
There are still some spots available, so if you’re as fascinated with the topic as I am, I expect to see you there.