Hittner Family Passover Seder Combines Faith and Politics
April 11, 2012

Faith and politics helped set the stage for a festive evening  during the 12th annual second night of Passover Seder hosted by the Hittner family.

George and wife, Erica, Judge David Hittner and  Dr. Helen Mintz-Hittner invited friends, family and associates of all faiths to read from the Haggadah and break bread during a traditional seder dinner of bitter herbs, eggs and wine.

The memorable moment of the evening happened when George, general counsel for American Traffic Solutions, presented souvenir red light camera signs to City Attorney Dave Feldman and Paul Kubosh, who led the successful fight to take down red light cameras in Houston.

With the Texas primary only weeks away, there were also plenty of political candidates and elected officials in the crowd including U.S. Senator candidate Ted Cruz, State Representative Candidate Gene Wu and City Councilwoman Ellen Cohen.

Other VIP guests: Public Relations Whiz Cindy Clifford, Jason Fuller, former Kemah Mayor Bill King, Grant Dorfman, Carl Davis, Bob and Carol Martin and many others.

I have enjoyed being invited to the Hittner’s annual tradition. George mentioned that the event could move to Phoenix next year, where he and Erica live.

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You Don’t Have To Be Jewish To Appreciate This Passover Seder
April 20, 2011

It has become one of the most popular social and religious celebrations in Houston. A night when members of the Hittner family open their hearts to share their tradition and faith with grateful friends.

For the eleventh year, Judge David Hittner and  Dr. Helen Mintz-Hittner, along with their son George and his new bride, Erica, hosted a Second Night of Passover Seder.  

They invited a large group of Jewish and non-Jewish friends and family to celebrate the evening at Damian’s Cucina Italiana

Traditionally, George serves as the leader throughout the evening and calls on people to read passages from the Haggadah, which tells the story of the Jewish people’s exodus from Egypt and out of bondage.

This was my third year attending the Hittner Seder.  I remain impressed by how the family manages to strike a balance between a solemn commemoration and a heartwarming, almost jovial, atmosphere.

The food is just as important as the reading of the text.   The menu consisted of the  Hittner family recipe of  “chicken with seeds,”  matzoh ball soup, haroset, unleavened bread, sour pickles, my favorite cheesecake dessert and a lot of  wine.

The evening ended with the reading of the poignant final sentence in the Haggadah, “Next Year In Jerusalem!!” 

There were a lot of friendly and familiar faces attending the Hittner Family 2nd Night of Passover Seder:  Jim Grace, Ted Cruz, Carl Davis, Jessica Colon, Bob and Carol Martin, David and Adriana Bain, Sonia Soto, Mustafa Tameez,Catarina Gonzales Cron, Bob Jones and many more.

Houstonians Gather To Mark The Jewish Holiday of Passover
March 31, 2010

While President Barack Obama marked a new tradition of hosting Passover Seder in the White House earlier this week,  the Hittner family of Houston continued its decade long tradition of welcoming people from different religious backgrounds to help retell the story of the Jewish people’s exodus from Egypt and out of bondage.

More than 200 people attended the 10th Annual 2nd Night of  Passover Seder hosted by attorney George Hittner , his wife Erica and parents Judge David Hittner and Dr. Helen Mintz-Hittner.  George Hittner began the tradition with his college roomates, and over the years he slowly started welcoming other friends and business associates to learn about the traditions of his faith.

The event was held at Damian’s Cocina Italiana, and featured the famous Hittner family recipe of “Chicken with seeds, matzah ball soup, haroset (a Jewish apple concoction) matzah (basically large crackers but officially “unleavened bread”) half-sour pickles and lots of wine!

I had the honor of attending for a second year and the crowd included the Hittner’s close friends and family, community leaders and elected officials: Harris County Judge Ed Emmett, Harris County Commissioner Steve Radack and wife Judge Sherry Radack, State Senator John Whitmire, attorney Jim Grace, Carl Davis from the City of  Houston, public relations expert Kim Padgett, along with several parents with young children.

While people enjoyed the company and good food, they also particpated in  prayer and  song as host  George Hittner called on members of the crowd to read aloud from the haggadah.

The story of Passover is derived from the Old Testament of the Bible when the angel of death “passed over” the houses of the Israelites as death fell upon the first-born of each Egyptian household.  The “Last Supper” was a Passover Seder.

I look forward to attending next year’s 2nd Night of Passover Seder.