• “While There’s Life…”

    The Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County presents

    While There’s Life…

    A poetry reading and book signing by author Ruth Minsky Sender

    Sunday, May 19, 2019

    3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

    The poems in While There’s Life… were written during her incarceration as prisoner #55082 in the Nazi slave labor camp in Mittelsteine, Germany.

    Ruth endeavored to depict scenes from her and other prisoner’s lives to give them courage and the will to continue living.  As her mother, Nacha Minska used to say:

    “While there’s life, there’s hope.”

    $10 suggested donation

    Please RSVP to (516) 571-8040 or info@hmtcli.org 

    Read the Press Release to learn more:

    Press Release: “While There’s Life…”

    Book review of Ms. Minsky Sender’s work by HMTC’s Marcia Posner:

    “While There’s Life…” a Book Review by Marcia Posner

     100 Crescent Beach Road

    Glen Cove, NY 11542

  • Press Release: “While There’s Life…”

    The Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County Presents

    While There’s Life…

    Poetry Reading and Book Signing by Ruth Minsky Sender

    Sunday, May 19, 2019, 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.


    Ruth Minsky Sender

    Glen Cove, NY… The Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County (HMTC) presents While There’s Life…  A poetry reading and book signing of by Holocaust survivor and author/poet Ruth Minsky Sender at the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County.  Sunday, May 19, 2019, 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    The poems in her newest collection, While There’s Life…: Poems from the Mittelsteine Labor Camp (1944-1945), were written during Mrs. Minsky Sender’s incarceration as prisoner #55082 in the Nazi slave labor camp in Mittelsteine Germany.  She endeavored to depict scenes from her and other prisoners’ lives to give them courage and the will to continue living.

    Ruth Minsky Sender was born Rifkele Riva Minska to a Jewish family in Łodź, Poland.  After the war she and her family emigrated to the United States, settling on Long Island.  Mrs. Minsky Sender was a teacher of Jewish culture and history, specializing in the Holocaust.  She has written four other books about her Holocaust experiences including The Cage (1986).

    $10 Suggested donation to attend.  Light refreshments will be served. Seats are limited; reservations are recommended.  RSVP to (516) 571-8040 or info@hmtcli.org


  • Press Release: But When We Started Singing…

     The Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County Presents But When We Started Singing… A One-Man Performance Inspired By Primo Levi Conceived and Performed by Bob SpiottoSunday, June 9, 2019 at 2:00 p.m.

    Bob Spiotto as Primo Levi

    Glen Cove, NY… The Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County (HMTC) presents, in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Primo Levi, But When We Started Singing…  The performance will take place on Sunday, June 9, 2019 at 2:00 p.m at Welwyn Preserve, 100 Crescent Beach Road, Glen Cove, NY 11542.  This one-man performance, conceived and performed by Bob Spiotto, is inspired by the life and poetry of Holocaust survivor and world renowned author and poet and Italian-Jew, Primo Levi (1919-1987).

    Robert “Bob” Spiotto is a creative/artistic/management professional who has worked in arts and entertainment for more than 30 years. He holds a B.F.A. in Theater Performance from Hofstra University and a M.F.A. in Directing from The Catholic University of America.  Mr. Spiotto is currently the Director of Programs/Special Events at New York’s famous Friar’s Club.  Previously, he served as the first Executive/Artistic Director of the historic Suffolk Theater (theater/restaurant/bar), prior to which he worked at Hofstra University (1990-2012) as Executive Producer/Artistic Director for Hofstra Entertainment; Artistic Director of Community Arts Programs for the Hofstra Cultural Center (music, theater, cultural, original programming), and Director/Producer of Special Events (festivals, conferences, public programs).  He served on the faculty of Hofstra’s School of Continuing Education, taught classes for Hofstra’s Summer Camps, and was an adjunct professor in their School of Communication as well as Hofstra’s New College. Mr. Spiotto has received awards from Hofstra University for his distinguished service and teaching accomplishments.

    In addition to his many accomplishments, he has directed hundreds of theater productions at various regional and professional theaters, schools and universities, as well as for various organizations and companies.  He has also created and appeared in numerous one-man shown exploring the lives of P.T Barnum, Giuseppe Garibaldi, Primo Levi Michaelangelo, Sholom Aleichem, and others.  A trio of his critically acclaimed one-man musical tributes include That’s Amore:  A Tribute to Mr. Hollywood Musical – Harry Warren, Shades of Grey: A Musical Tribute to Joel Grey, and Courting the Jester: A Salute to Danny Kaye, which was re-worked and presented at Lincoln Center.

    Primo Levi was born in Turin, Italy in 1919, to a family of assimilated and fairly non-religious Jews with Spanish roots.  In 1943, he joined a band of partisans devoted to fighting Germans and Italian facists.  Levi spent 10 months at the Nazi concentration camp at Auschwitz and was liberated in 1945.  In 1977 he retired from his position as manager of a chemical factory in Turin, devoting himself exclusively to writing until the time of his controversial death on April 11, 1987 in the apartment building where he was born and eventually took up residence.  Levi is known for his novels and poetry collections such as If This Is a Man, The Periodic Table, If Not Now, When,  and The Drowned and the Saved.

    $10 suggested donation to attend.  Light refreshments will be served. Seats are limited; reservations are recommended.  RSVP to (516) 571-8040 or info@hmtcli.org

  • “While There’s Life…” a Book Review by Marcia Posner


     by Ruth Minsky Sender

    After writing three books, all memoirs : “The Cage,”  “To Life,” (which you may borrow from our library) and “The Holocaust Lady,” Ruth Minsky Sender Sender has recently published a book of poems, mainly written after 1950.  They are poems of the deepest emotions and yes, perhaps trust too. “Each poem is a delicate work of art.” wrote one reviewer. Most have been translated from the Yiddish and a few from the  Polish, during her  incarceration in the Mittelsteine Slave Labor Camp (1944-1945).  She wrote them in a little notebook given to her as a gift by the Nazi Commandant as a reward for entertaining the guards at Christmas, which all 400 Jewish slave labor girls were forced to do. Ruth would also read her poems each Sunday to the 50 other women sharing the room with her.

    Discussing the writing of poetry, has your heart ever been so heavy that you,too, wrote poetry to sustain yourself ? Ruth Minsky Sender was blessed to have a mother who managed to maintain hope, saying: “Where there is life is hope;” even in the camp, until she died. Perhaps that is why Ruth was able to pour out her feelings in poetry written secretly during her stay at the slave labor camp. They were not only poems of despair, but also of infinite wisdom and hope.  As one reviewer wrote: “While There’s Life . . .” is a volume that should be read and re-read by people of all faiths.  It is a portrait not just of survival, but of how one woman transformed her pain in humanity’s darkest hour into art. . . into life.”

    How fortunate are we, to be free, to be able to share, words so rare.  Hoorah, Ruth Minsky Sender. Welcome to HMTC.

    Mrs. Minsky Sender will be at HMTC on Sunday, May 19, 2019 at 3:00 pm for a poetry reading and book signing.  Please RSVP to info@hmtcli.org or (516)571-8040. $10 suggested donation; light refreshments will be served.

  • “Dirty Jewess”

    “Dirty Jewess: Testimony by a Child of Auschwitz Survivors and Her Escape from Soviet Occupation and Antisemitism” by Silvia Fishbaum

    Sunday, March 10, 2019 at 1:00 pm at HMTC

    A Unique Memoir about Jewish Life under Communism in Postwar Czechoslovakia

    Silvia Fishbaum, the child of Holocaust Survivors, will share her story about growing up in an Orthodox Jewish family during the Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia.  She will describe the oppression and antisemitism that her family faced, and her bold decision to escape from Communist tyranny.  After the program, she will sign copies of her unique memoir, Dirty Jewess: A Woman’s Courageous Journey to Religious and Political Freedom.

    $10 suggested donation.  Please RSVP to (516) 571-8040 or info@hmtcli.org

  • Teaching “To Kill a Mockingbird”

    Teaching To Kill a Mockingbird

    a Facing History and Ourselves workshop

    Rescheduled from March

    Tuesday, May 16, 2017, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

    Welwyn Preserve, 100 Crescent Beach Road
    Glen Cove, NY

    This workshop introduces Facing History’s resource, Teaching Mockingbird, which incorporates civic education, ethical reflection, and historical context into a literary exploration of Harper Lee’s beloved novel. It offers a fresh approach that integrates multimedia resources, historical sources, and Common Core-aligned strategies that deepen students’ understanding of the novel and illuminate fundamental questions of human behavior. Participants will discover new interdisciplinary teaching strategies that reinforce historical and literacy skill and will receive a free copy of To Kill a Mockingbird.

    Recommended for 6-12th grade English Language Arts, Social Studies or Humanities educators teaching the novel.

    There is a registration fee of $10 which includes lunch and materials. Register online here.

    For more information contact Tracy Garrison-Feinberg at (516) 571-8040 or tracygarrisonfeinberg@hmtcli.org.

  • “After the Silence” edited by Lillian Gewirtzman and Karla Nieraad Available for Purchase

    On Sunday, April 2, 2017, at 2 p.m., HMTC will have a special program about the new book, After the Silence: Reflections of the Descendants, edited by Lillian Gewirtzman and Karla Nieraad. The book is an anthology of personal essays from descendants of Holocaust Survivors and post-war Germans. Eleven Americans and eleven Germans from the collaborators extended circle of contacts wrote about their memories, feelings and recalled stories as children and grandchildren.

    For those who are interested in purchasing the book prior to April 2, you can order the book at amazon.com by doing a search for the book’s ISBN number which is 978-3-86281-106-9. In addition, from everywhere in the world one can order the English version at British amazon.co.uk and at amazon.de from Germany (in the department “fremdsprachige Bücher”).

    Also, the book is available directly from the publisher’s online shop.

    For more information or to RSVP for the April 2 program, call (516) 571-8040.

  • Barnes & Noble Book Fair

    Barnes & Noble Bookfair

    Sunday, December 11 2016

    1542 Northern Boulevard 

    Manhasset, NY

    Up to 20% of your purchases benefits HMTC’s Holocaust and anti-bullying education programs. Must mention HMTC at checkout or Bookfair ID 11993094.


    9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
    Story Hour and Craft Project for children ages 3-12

    11:00 a.m. – 12 noon

    Holocaust Survivor Helga Shepard will read from her memoir The Hidden Child Book Club Remembers: An Anthology of Holocaust Stories (Age 12+)

    3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

    WWII Veteran Seymour Kaplan will share his experiences of being a teenager in the 42nd Infantry Division and liberating Dachau Concentration Camp. (Age 11+)

    Can’t attend the book fair in Manhasset?
    Visit any Barnes & Noble store on Sunday, December 11, 2016 and mention HMTC at checkout or visit bn.com/bookfairs from December 11 – 16th and
    use Bookfair ID 11993094 at checkout.

    For more information, please contact Deborah Lom at dlom@hmtcli.org or (516) 571-8040.


  • Barnes & Noble Bookfair

    HMTC Barnes & Noble Bookfair

    Sunday, December 6, 2015

    A percentage of your purchases benefits HMTC

    Barnes & Noble
    1542 Northern Blvd, Manhasset, NY

    Barnes and Noble Flyer(2)

    Join us for activities and programs for all ages:

    9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
    Story Hour and Craft Project for children ages 3-12

    11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
    Holocaust Survivor Ethel Katz will read from her memoir
    Our Tomorrows Never Came
    Age 12+

    2 p.m. – 3 p.m.
    Holocaust Survivor Werner Reich will read
    The Magician of Auschwitz and present a magic demonstration and lesson
    Age 8+

    3 p.m. – 4 p.m.
    Bernice Sims will read from her memoir
    Detour Before Midnight
    Age 12+

    Even if you can’t attend our bookfair in Manhasset you can still support HMTC:
    Visit any Barnes & Noble store on December 6, 2015 and mention HMTC or code 11614617 at checkout and a percentage of your purchase will benefit HMTC
    Visit bn.com/bookfairs to support HMTC online from December 6-11, 2015 and enter Bookfair ID 11614617 at checkout and a percentage of your purchase will benefit HMTC

  • “The Death Camp Magicians” is November’s Book of the Month



    Death Camp Magicians

    Review by Marcia Posner

    The Death Camp Magicians: A True Story of Holocaust Survivors Werner Reich and Herbert Nivelli, by William V. Rauscher and Werner Reich, is HMTC’s November Book of the Month. When a psychic priest names William V. Rauscher, and Survivor Werner Reich, both of whom are interested in magic, write a book together, the reader can expect to read something unique. This one does not disappoint. The two met because Reich was tracing “Nivelli” a professional magician who was his bunkmate in Birkenau, a concentration camp. Nivelli had taught Reich some card tricks there. Their common interest in magic had so fascinated a concentration camp guard, that Reich is sure it saved Nivelli’s life and indirectly, his own.

    Assuming that there are many younger people today who no longer know much about the Holocaust and Hitler, Rauscher introduces it in the book with many archival photographs, a history of the Holocaust and it’s villains followed by philosophizing on the theme of evil. He prefaces Reich’s testimony with, “Antisemitism, prejudice, intolerance and racism are caused by a lack of inner knowledge, spiritual development, self-awareness and a distorted view of our place on earth in the scheme of things.” He also has some provocative thoughts on how one needs an inner sense of divine dimension to cope with drugs and other evils of modern society and that he finds in Reich’s testimony of his Holocaust experiences a vision of how to rescue today’s youth from repeating that horror. Then Rauscher provides a list of Jewish magicians from the period of the Holocaust. Fascinating!

    But the bulk of the book belongs to Reich. His “book in a book” is titled: From Darkness Into Light: The Autobiography of Werner Reich.

    Reich’s description of his harrowing journey through the Shoah, the “Catastrophe” as the Holocaust is sometimes called, is dynamite. Reich was only 16 years old when he was taken prisoner at Auschwitz II. His gripping account of how he spent his teenage years in three concentration camps, where he encountered cruelty, but also where sometimes kindness and mutual support by prisoners trying to convert hardship into humor, aided the miracle of surviving. His bunkmate, Nivelli, entertained the SS guards with magic tricks and taught some to Reich, who credits Nivelli for changing his life and possibly for being selected as one not to be killed. He also wanted to thank Nivelli for introducing him to magic. Rauscher helps Reich vis a vis Nivelli and invites Reich to write his Holocaust experiences for this book.

    In his book (within the book) Reich guides the reader into the deepest recesses of what a teenager experienced in those terrible years when hell visited upon the earth and innocent souls were bound in its grasp. He depicts the entire history of Nazi influence and take over of Germany, his home country, and what happens to him in three increasingly tortuous concentration camps, as well as later on a train when the Germans are about to surrender. After liberation, as he wanders from country to country seeking a home and friends, if not family, one wonders how he survived. Multilingual, he also spends time on what happened to him in various countries after the war, at times as painful as his days of incarceration; truly a dismal time until determination to live again and find new friends and love with Eva start to make him whole again. Reich is not only a survivor, he is also a fine author, historian, and lecturer/speaker. This is a perfect book to offer to those who know little about Holocaust history and/or a memoir of someone’s experiences in that “kingdom of the night.” It is an equally perfect book for those who value good writing and admire the courage and strength of those young people who despite all, survived the camps. Each Survivor’s story is different, and Reich’s is one of the strangest. Despite his suffering, he retained his wry sense of humor and determination to survive. Recommended for young adult to adult.