Miami Beach

Beach Buzz: Cooking on the courts, followed by tennis

Anat Hoffman to speak in Miami Beach
Anat Hoffman to speak in Miami Beach

The 7th annual Marissa Nestor Tennis Invitational to benefit United Cerebral Palsy of South Florida takes place Saturday, Jan. 24, at Flamingo Park Tennis Center in Miami Beach (previously the event was held in Key Biscayne for many years).

Hosts for the event are Dr. Eva Ritvo of Miami Beach (co-author of The Beauty Prescription and Marissa Nestor’s mom) and Jason Starkman, co-owner of Epicure Gourmet Market & Café (tournament sponsor for the past five years).

To help raise additional funds, Starkman (an avid tennis player since age 9) and his wife, Diana, will host “Cooking on the Courts III” on Friday, Jan. 23, at 6:30 p.m. The private dinner (for up to 65 guests) will be held on the tennis court at the Starkmans’ Bay Harbour home. Attendees will meet area chefs Michelle Bernstein (Seagrape), Alycia Delaney (The Forge), Michael Love (Epicure), Hector Morales (Epicure), and Steve Martorano (Martorano’s). Sponsor for the dinner is Southern Wine and Spirits of South Florida.

“It is my pleasure to be involved with these two events. I love tennis and it is my pleasure to help UCP, particularly since funding for the nonprofit has been cut drastically in recent years,” Starkman said.

In addition to providing the dinner’s food and the tournament’s breakfast and lunch, Epicure will donate gift cards for participating pros and tournament winners (who will reeive a $500 gift card and magnum of Moet Chandon).

Tennis pros playing in the invitational include Van Winitsky and Eddie Dibbs. Coordinators for the tournament are Daniel Capote and Dean Goldfine (who donate their services annually). Registration and breakfast begin at 9 a.m.

Cost for the dinner is $1,000 per person, including tournament play. Nonplayers are also welcome. Tennis only is $150 per doubles entry; singles (to be matched with partner) is $85. Luncheon/Silent auction only is $50.

UCP of South Florida provides services to children and adults with developmental disabilities. The tennis tournament is named in honor of Marissa Nestor, who is living with cerebral palsy. Marissa will celebrate her 24th birthday Jan. 23 — at the “Cooking on the Courts” dinner party.

For tickets or further information, call 305-325-9018 or visit

Anat Hoffman to speak in Miami Beach

Anat Hoffman, renowned director of the Israel Religious Action Center (IRAC), will speak at Temple Beth Sholom during Shabbat Services on Friday, Jan. 23, at 6 p.m. She will also participate in a Q&A session at a Shabbat Dinner following services to discuss the status of Progressive Judaism in Israel.

Director of IRAC since 2002, Hoffman has fought tirelessly to combat racism and religious coercion in Israel and to promote pluralism, Jewish-Arab coexistence and equal rights for women and minorities. As Chairperson of Women of the Wall, Hoffman is perhaps best known for her role in leading the cause for the right of women to pray at the Western Wall and for women’s equal pay for equal work.

“We are privileged to welcome Anat Hoffman to Temple Beth Sholom. This is a rare and special opportunity for us to meet a truly inspiring and revolutionary leader face to face,” Rabbi Gayle Pomerantz said.

Temple Beth Sholom is located at 4144 Prairie Ave. in Miami Beach. The service and dinner are open to the public. Cost for the Shabbat dinner is $20 per adult; $12.50 per child. Reservations must be made by noon Jan. 21. To learn more, call 305-538-7231 or register online at

Celebrating Spanish culture

Flamenco Sephardit II, Duende y Corazon is a performance celebrating two distinct Spanish cultures (Ladino and Flamenco) through music, dance and poetry. Produced by Orchestral/Opera conductor Jeffrey Eckstein and Siempre Flamenco, the show features a cast of international opera stars, guitarists, flamenco masters, and members of the New World Symphony. It takes place Sunday, Jan. 18, at 7 p.m. at Temple Emanu-El in Miami Beach (1701 Washington Ave.). Cost is $15 in advance; $20 at the door. For tickets or information, call 305-866-4387 or purchase online at

Membership meeting & debate

Miami Beach United will host its Annual Membership Meeting and Speaker Series at 6 p.m. Jan. 20 at the Miami Beach Golf Club (2301 Alton Rd.). The event will feature installation of MBU’s 2015 board of directors and a debate about Form Based Code, a system — if enacted — that would change the method of planning and zoning in the city. Debate speakers will be Bernard Zyscovich, founder of Zyscovich Architects, and Steven Mouzon, principal of New Urban Guild Miami. Moderator will be management consultant Mark Samuelian. Free and open to the public. RSVP to 305-609-4288.

Beach Buzz appears every other Sunday, and focuses on people and businesses throughout the Beaches, Aventura and Miami. To reach Debra K. Leibowitz, call 305-531-7887 or email, or become a fan of her Beach Buzz page on Facebook.