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This is a free event, tickets can be acquired by phone at (519) 578-1570 or in person at Centre In The Square box office.
“Near Normal Man”, is a documentary film about Ben Stern, a young man, who from 17-24 survived 2 ghettos, 9 concentration camps and 2 death marches.Ben arrived to the U.S. as a homeless refugee without English, funds or education; he found his freedom and rebuilt his life. 30 years later, Nazis announced a rally in Skokie, Illinois, his new hometown. When his rabbi tells survivors to all stay home and close the shades, Ben, in an audience of 800 people, jumped up, ran forward and shouted “Not Here! Not Now!” He then builds nationwide support and commitment of 60,000 to come and defy the Nazi rally. The Nazis cancel their rally. In 2017, forty years later, for the third time in his life, Ben, at 95, led a march of 800 and spoke to thousands, at a ”Rally Against Hatred” in Berkeley, CA. Again, Nazis cancel their rally.
“Near Normal Man” is the story of one young man, his life of courage, kindness and hope, who defeated Nazis 3 times in his lifetime. Now, Ben speaks out as an activist for human rights. His life and message cross many intersections; history and today, Jew and Gentile, the oldest generation to the next generation who need to know how to survive and lead to a better future for all of humanity.After the screening of “Near Normal Man”, Ben, now 98, will speak, then answer questions from the audience, with his daughter, Charlene Stern, film producer and director.