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 Ilan Sinelnikov. This week This week we have another “Couples Edition” with Robyn & Josh Awend! Know someone we should feature? Nominate them by sending an email to [email protected].
Robyn: I was born and raised in the Mpls burbs. I moved to Arizona and Texas for art school, and studied abroad in Australia.
TCJ: How did you two meet? What was your first date like?
Josh: We met at a mutual friends house party. Robyn showed up and I had never met her before. Turns out we have the same friends growing up but never crossed paths. Our first date, I convinced Robyn to grab a slice at Pizza Luce… during Passover. We have been together ever since!
TCJ: Robyn, you’re the Visual Arts director for the Sabes JCC. Have you always been interested in art?
Robyn: I have always been interested in the arts since I was little. Being involved in the heart of the Jewish arts community at the Sabes JCC for the past 8 years has been such a meaningful experience, both personally and professionally. As an artist and an arts appreciator, I am passionate about exploring ways that art and Judaism intersect and impact community.
TCJ: Josh, you run American Drapery Systems. Have you always been interested in draperies?
Josh: American Drapery Systems, Inc. is my family business. Some kids grew up going on spring break to Mexico, my brother and I got to hang draperies at hospitals. It is a great business, one that can take you from a CEO’s office to a homeless shelter to an Emergency Room all in one day. We have also been very lucky to work with a lot of our friends in the Jewish community and value them as customers. We are also having a sale!
TCJ: Are you involved in any other TC organizations?
Josh: I helped start GESHER: Metro Jewish Business Connection. It is a group for young Jewish professionals to meet and network.
TCJ: We’re taking an informal survey. Which of the many Jewish summer camps gets you all ferklempt?
Josh: Olami, Chi in the Wisconsin Dells and Ramah Wisconsin
Robyn: Herzl, I can still remember the feeling of Shabbat at camp
Robyn & Josh: With friends and family at our table.
TCJ: What’s your favorite Jewish holiday?
Josh: Shabbat. I like the idea that no matter what is going on you stop and take time to relax and refocus.
Robyn: I agree, Shabbat is my favorite Jewish holiday. It’s something (spiritual) to look forward to each week with a conscious beginning and end.
TCJ: What’s your favorite Jewish food?
Josh: HAMENTASHEN FROM CECILS. No joke….Robyn forces me to get one of each whenever we eat there.
Robyn: Too difficult to choose just one favorite. Some of the top pics include, homemade matzo balls soup, sweet kugel, charoset and hamentashen (from Cecils).
TCJ: Who is the coolest Jew?
Josh: Mel Brooks.
TCJ: Have you been to Israel? What is your favorite memory?
Josh: Yes. For my Bar Mitzvah and again with Ramah. I enjoyed working on an archeology site, randomly being at the Dead Sea with the Georgetown Hoyas basketball team and eating my weight in Shawarma.
TCJ: What’s your favorite thing to do in the Cities?
Robyn: To soak up the layers of culture.
TCJ: What else do you do for fun?
Josh: I perform Improv around town at various venues.
Robyn: Creating art and exhibiting, when time permits. I am also runner and a yogi for personal sanity.
TCJ: Give us one more reason you’re folking awesome!
Josh: I have size 14 shoes…
Robyn: I love what I do.Click here to nominate your favorite TC Jew to be featured on our weekly Who the Folk?! series!