Museum Week 2019

Zoe Wright, Public Relations Intern

The Florida Holocaust Museum is excited to participate in #MuseumWeek 2019. Throughout the week, #MuseumWeek is bringing together cultural institutions from across the globe. The theme is “7 Days, 7 themes, 7 Hashtags,” all of which are framed based on the role of women in the culture of yesterday, today and tomorrow. #WomenInCulture is the featured hashtag of the sixth edition of Museum Week. The other hashtags include #SecretsMW, #PlayMW, #RainbowMW, #ExploreMW, #PhotoMW and #FriendsMW. Sponsors of Museum Week include The New York Times, UNESCO, CloudGuide, Museum (tv channel) and Talkwalker.

On Monday, May 13, the hashtag of the day is #WomenInCulture, focusing on women in the fields of history, art, culture and science. The Florida Holocaust Museum tells the story of many different women, whether it be the story of Holocaust survivors in our own community or rock and roll musicians promoted by Bill Graham.

The Florida Holocaust Museum is proud to tell the story of Holocaust survivors who live in the Tampa Bay region. One of those stories is of Toni Rinde. Toni was born on November 9, 1940 in Przemsyl, Poland.

After being forced to move into a ghetto, Toni was only an infant when her parents made the brave choice to give her up, to keep her safe from the Nazis during World War II. They were going to do anything to keep Toni out of the ghetto. One day, Toni’s parents were walking her in a carriage, when a stranger approached them and asked how it could be that such a beautiful baby was going to be brought into the ghetto. Toni’s parents immediately asked the stranger if she would help them. Aunt Koniosna, as Toni remembers her, took Toni and raised her as her own child. Toni was raised with a Catholic name, “Marisha.”

Thankfully, after the war, Toni was reunited with her parents when they all emigrated to the United States. In 1978, Toni and her family moved to Clearwater, Florida. Since then, she has served as chair at her Temple, President of the Jewish Federation of Pinellas County and a founding member of The Florida Holocaust Museum Board of Trustees. The Florida Holocaust Museum cherishes Toni as a woman who used her own difficult experience as motivation to make a difference in the world for future generations.

To learn more about Toni Rinde and other Holocaust survivors, come visit The Florida Holocaust Museum and head to the third floor. #WomenInCulture #MuseumWeek

The Bill Graham and the Rock and Roll Revolution exhibition has been open at The Florida Holocaust Museum since August 2018 and is running through June 30, 2019. The exhibition tells the story of Bill Graham (1931-1991), a renowned music promoter who helped launch and promote the career of countless rock and roll artists. It also traces the indomitable spirit of a man brought to the United States as an eleven-year-old Jewish refugee fleeing the Nazis, fueling a lifelong passion and advocacy for social justice. One of the women, rock and roll musicians Bill Graham promoted was Janis Joplin. Featured in the exhibition is Janis Joplin’s tambourine and mic from a performance at the Fillmore Auditorium in 1968.

Janis Joplin and Bill Graham “had a close relationship,” recalls Robert Greenfield, friend of Bill Graham and biographer. “But he definitely yelled at her and her band cause they were all hippies from San Francisco.”

The history of Janis Joplin shown in the Bill Graham and the Rock and Roll Revolution exhibition portrays her as a woman of yesterday, paving the way for modern women today. Janis embodied what it meant to be a rock and roll musician. She challenged social norms and lived life to the fullest. In terms of modern feminism, Janis Joplin’s willingness to immerse herself in situations not typical for women at the time, contributed to the second wave of feminism in the seventies.

Be sure to use one of the many Museum Week hashtags this week when you visit The Florida Holocaust Museum! We look forward to seeing you this week to celebrate Museum Week 2019 as we remember the women who have come before us. The Florida Holocaust Museum is located on 55 Fifth Street South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701.

#MuseumWeek #WomenInCulture