Community Presentations

Imagine being a child, living in a comfortable home, too young to understand the political turmoil you hear your parents talk about. Suddenly, in the middle of the night, men in uniform break into your family’s apartment. They smash furniture, throw dishes out the window, and hold a gun to your father’s head.

Seventy five years later, those memories – memories of Hitler’s November pogrom, known as Kristallnacht – are still painfully clear. Survivors of the Holocaust who were in Germany and Austria on November 9-10, 1938, identify it as the night that changed everything for their families and communities.

On Sunday October 27th, a panel of four local Holocaust Survivors — Sonja Marchesano, Sylvia Rapp, Eva Ritt and Harry Lowenstein — will share their memories of that night at a special program at the Holocaust Center, 851 N. Maitland Avenue. They will talk about their experiences on Kristallnacht and how they survived throughout the war.

The panel will be moderated by Professor Richard Gair of Valencia College. The program, which starts at 2 PM, is free and open to the public. Free parking is available on site, and the building is fully handicap accessible.

This event is being held as part of Central Florida’s Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of Kristallnacht – the beginning of Hitler’s Final Solution. A remarkable group of arts and cultural organizations are hosting a series of events to promote respect and diversity in our society, and to empower our community to speak out against injustice. More information about the community-wide collaboration is online at For information about other programs at the Holocaust Center call 407-628-0555.

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The Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Florida · 851 N Maitland Ave · Maitland, FL 32751 · Phone: 407-628-0555 ·