Who the Folk?! Ali Kaplan

Welcome to “Who the Folk?!” Every week on Monday we feature a new member of the community as our “Person of the Week.” Last week we got to know Chad Kampe. This week meet Ali Kaplan! Know someone we should feature? Nominate them by sending an email to [email protected]

TC Jewfolk: Are you from the Twin Cities? 

Ali: Yes. Did the tour of the Midwest – Madison, Milwaukee, Chicago before my mother ordered me back. 

TCJ: You’re the senior editor of shopping + style for Mpls.St.Paul Magazine. Is this a dream job for you?

Ali: ​Sure is—I get to shop in the middle of the day, hang out at photo shoots with people much skinnier and taller than I’ll ever be, go to fashion shows, shop with celebrities, and call it “work.” My job is a great combination of writing, collaborating, discovering and celebrating the all the amazing talent in our cities.

TCJ: You’ve written a definitive guide to the Mall of America. What things, in your mind, make up the quintessential MOA experience?

Ali: Well, now, there are so many different ways to do it right—that’s why I had to write the guide! (www.alishops.com for details). But to really appreciate all that the MOA is, you need a shark sighting, rope climbing, LEGOs, a roller coaster ride, crepes, and the climax: a trip to the Nordstrom shoe department.

TCJ: All my pants seemed to develop holes at the same time. Please help!

Ali: Stop crawling around on the floor or simply own it—tell people distressed is in! It’s all in your attitude. 

TCJ: We’re taking an informal survey. Which of the many Jewish summer camps gets you all ferklempt?

Ali: I’d have to go with Camp Olami at the Sabes JCC because my kids go there and absolutely adore it—they try to avoid me at pick up time.

Ali shopping with Bill Nye at the MoA. (She's the one hiding behind the camerawoman.)

Ali shopping with Bill Nye at the MOA. (She’s the one hiding behind the camerawoman.)

TCJ: What’s your favorite way to celebrate Shabbat?

Ali: With family, and someone else’s cooking.

TCJ: What’s your favorite Jewish holiday?

Ali: Is it too cliche to say Hanukkah? I like lights and latkes and having a big family party.

TCJ: What’s your favorite Jewish food?

Ali: Potato knishes. My grandma’s were the best. Every Rosh Hashanah, my cousin and I attempt to equal her recipe. We fall short, but have a lot of fun trying.

TCJ: Who is the coolest Jew?

Ali: Mila Kunis. She’s so cool, I had to double check that she’s Jewish. But it’s true, she is. Wonder if Ashton will convert?

TCJ: Have you been to Israel? What is your favorite memory?

Ali: Yes! Spent a summer there in college. Worked on kibbutz Nahal Oz near the Gaza strip, and I mean WORKED—picking watermelons every day from 5 a.m. until the point of heat exhaustion. Nothing tastes so sweet as a watermelon you’ve picked and cracked open on your knee in the middle of a field.

TCJ: What else do you do for fun?

Ali: I love biking the lakes and strolling the Sculpture Garden and drinking fruity things on the patio at Psycho Suzies.

TCJ: Give us one more reason you’re folking awesome!

Ali: I can rap like Nicki Minaj. In the car. Only in the car.

Click here to nominate your favorite TC Jew to be featured on our weekly Who the Folk?! series!