Jewish Supreme Court Justices, Family Genealogy and Military Service Dominate 2017 Jewish American Heritage Month in DC

First Jewish U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Louis Brandeis / photo courtesy of wikipedia

May is around the corner, and with it the 11th annual Jewish American Heritage Month! The official website has been updated with upcoming events at venues around the country.

The Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington is teaming up with the National Archives to present this event:

Lecture and Book Signing with Dr. David Dalin, May 4, 7pm
Historian and Rabbi Dr. David Dalin will be in conversation with U.S. Solicitor General Seth Waxman about his recent book release, Jewish Justices of the Supreme Court: From Brandeis to Kagan. Book signing to follow!

Other events in the DC include Jewish genealogy lectures with DAR Library Manuscript Curator Pamela Baster on May 4 and with genealogist Daniel Horowitz at the Library of Congress on May 8. On Memorial Day weekend, The National Museum of American Jewish Military History is teaming up with Sixth & I to present a Shabbat service in honor of the Jewish service people who died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Please feel free to add any comments about other JAHM events happening in the area. Check out my past coverage of Jewish American Heritage Month under the “Annual Events” tab.

Celebrate Purim in 5777!

Esther scroll / photo courtesy of wikipedia

Esther scroll / photo courtesy of wikipedia

Purim starts on March 11, a festive holiday of rejoicing, yet again, in the fact that we (the Jews) have survived an attempt at persecution. Though not as noticeable to the outside world as, say, Chanukah, it is definitely as fun—allowing people of all ages to dress up, eat special sweets, and wave noisemakers called groggers as the Megillah (book of Esther) is read out enthusiastically.

…but you don’t have to wait until the 14th of Adar to dress up as your favorite Biblical character, or at least to get down. Enjoy these local offerings of Purim-related festivities leading up to and encompassing this holiday weekend!

Wednesday, March 8
Young Adults Pre-Purim Happy Hour
https://youngleadership.wufoo.com/forms/rzxnq4b09q133o/

The Max Ticktin Annual Latke-Hamentaschen Debate
jconnect

Purim Weekend
Washington Hebrew Congregation’s Purim at the Oscars, Purim Lock-In, Purim Carnival
http://www.whctemple.org/purim

Adas Israel’s The World Upside Down Purim, Purim Pajama Party, Breakfast Reception and Rooftop Party, Sing-Along, Costume Parade and Carnival
http://adasisrael.org/purim/

Tikvat Israel’s Purim Celebration, Nosh ‘n’ Spiel, On the Persian Carpet: A Purim Broadway Revue, Puppet Production Family Celebration
http://tikvatisrael.org/events/purim-services-maariv-megillah/

Friday, March 10
Tot Purim @ Temple Shalom
jconnect

Saturday, March 11
Pride of Purim: A Queer Masquerade
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/1601753210?view=Detail&id=153143

Grogger and Glow: A Purim Celebration
https://www.sixthandi.org/event/grogger-glow-purim-celebration/

Bethesda Jewish Congregation’s Purim Spiel: Thank God I’m a Country Jew
http://bethesdajewish.org/event/adult-purim-spiel/

Congregation Har Tzeon-Agudath Achim’s Purim Pajama Jam
https://www.htaa.org/event/purim-pajama-jam.html

Sunday, March 12
EDCCJCC Purim Carnival
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/1601753210?view=Detail&id=153100

Temple Shalom’s Purim Puppet Show and Carnival
jconnect

Bender JCC Purim Party
http://www.benderjccgw.org/event/purim-party-2/

Adat Shalom’s Purim Palooza
jconnect

PJ Library and various sponsors present sensory friendly Purim celebrations
https://youngleadership.wufoo.com/forms/r1n1dtzs0s44me6/

Commemorate MLK Weekend and Tu B’Shevat 5777 in DC!

Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel with Martin Luther King, Jr in 1965 / photo courtesy of wikipedia

Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel with Martin Luther King, Jr in 1965 / photo courtesy of wikipedia

Happy 2017! As this is my first post of the year, I thought I’d share a few stats from 2016. According to WordPress, JewishDC got 1,901 views and 1,356 visitors, with the largest numbers coming from the US, Brazil, Russia and India. Wow! My most popular post of the year was Black Jews Documentary and More at the Washington, DC Jewish Film Festival.

Thanks so much for your support, everyone, and I look forward to a fruitful new secular year! Let’s get into some holidays and community service.

As we enter the second half of January and the first half of February, one secular and one religious holiday crop up on the horizon. The long weekend set aside for commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. starts Saturday, Jan. 14, and Tu B’Shevat commences on Feb.10. Check out ways to get involved with the local community! Note: some events may be sold out.

Please feel free to add more events in the comments.

MLK Weekend

  • Sixth & I’s Visions of Freedom and Justice. In conjunction with Turner Memorial AME church and featuring their two choirs. Also focusing on the work of Civil Rights activist Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel.
  • Washington Hebrew Congregation’s MLK Shabbat Dinner. Hosting partner churches and mosques, with special guest Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II. Rev. Dr. Barber was the architect of the North Carolina-based Forward Together Moral Movement and was a keynote speaker at the 2016 Democratic National Convention, amongst other things. Followed by Shabbat service.
  • Adas Israel’s Weekend of Tikkun Olam. Featuring a Friday night Return Again Shabbat service, dinner, and a Saturday morning service with guest speakers. On Sunday, a service at the Peoples Congregational United Church of Christ with guest speaker Charles Cobb, former activist, senior analyst at allAfrica.com, and more.
  • Also check out Monday days of service with WHC and the EDCJCC (links courtesy of GatherTheJews.com).

Tu B’Shevat

Chag Sameach!

DC High Holiday Classes and Events 5777

Jews performing taschlich in this Aleksander Gierymski painting / photo courtesy of wikipedia

Jews performing taschlich in this Aleksander Gierymski painting / photo courtesy of wikipedia

L’shanah tova! A new year is upon us—and my favorite holiday. 😀 I you are looking for tickets to attend Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services in the DC area, check out my last post.

Washington also offers classes and events to inform you and get you in the spirit of high holidays! I’ve gathered up a few offerings from Sixth & I and the Edlavitch DCJCC and the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington. Please leave others in the comments!

***


Ongoing
Celebrate Character Day Online! JHSGW

Wednesday, September 21
The Holiness of Anger Management, 7:30 pm, Sixth & I
https://www.sixthandi.org/event/holiness-anger-management/

Thursday, September 22
Get Carded, 7 pm, Sixth & I
https://www.sixthandi.org/event/get-carded/

Sunday, September 25
Repentance, Forgiveness and Personal Change, 2 pm, DCJCC
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/1308838773?view=Detail&id=152578

Wednesday, September 28
Sorry, Not Sorry, 7 pm, Sixth & I
https://www.sixthandi.org/event/sorry-not-sorry/

Thursday, September 29
Confessions: A Storytelling Interrogation Show, 7:30 pm, Buckeye and Bear/DCJCC
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/1308838773?view=Detail&id=152678

May you have a sweet new year!

Commemorate MLK Weekend and Tu B’Shevat 5776 in DC!

Traditional Tu B’Shevat bounty / photo courtesy of wikipedia

Happy 2016! As we enter the second half of January, one secular and one religious holiday crop up on the horizon. The long weekend set aside for commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. starts tomorrow, Jan. 16, and Tu B’Shevat commences on Jan. 24. Check out ways to get involved with the local community! Note: some events may be sold out.

Please feel free to add more events in the comments.

MLK Weekend

  • Sixth & I’s MLK Shabbat: Visions of Freedom and Justice. In conjunction with Turner Memorial AME church and featuring their two choirs.
  • Washington Hebrew Congregation’s MLK Shabbat Dinner. Hosting partner churches and mosques, with special guest William Jelani Cobb. Professor Cobb is director of the University of Connecticut’s Africana Studies Institute, amongst other things. Followed by Shabbat service.
  • Adas Israel’s Weekend of Tikkun Olam. This weekend of learning features a such guests as Imam Talib M. Shareef of Masjid Muhammad, the Nation’s Mosque; and Jared Jackson of Jews in All Hues. (I attended one of their programs a few years ago and wrote about it here.) Also a joint service at the Peoples Congregational United Church of Christ, and more!
  • Gather the Jews compiled a list of links to sign up for various days of service this Monday.

Tu B’Shevat

Chag sameach!

2015 in review for JewishDC!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

But before I herald out the secular year, a few notes on activities from December!

On Tuesday, December 8, I was at Sixth & I for an awesome, soulful, dance-y concert (made it in juuuust before getting sick with a bad cold. :D) The group in question was Bulletproof Stockings, a chasidic alt rock girls band from Brooklyn, on their first regional tour! I was able to cobble together a little teaser vid of the event; you can watch it here.

A week later, on Tuesday, December 15, I was back, at the DCJCC this time, to watch more New Yorkers (or close enough, at least, since they work for Tablet Magazine) visit the capital–the hosts of their podcast, Unorthodox. It was a rowdy, fun night, featuring such guests as Jewish food guru Joan Nathan, journalists Elizabeth Bruenig and Adam Kredo, and songwriter Jeff Knable. Also lots of great interaction with the audience, but alas, most of that got caught in the final show. Still very much worth checking out!

It’s been a great year for me, as I hope this blog indicates. I look forward to being back in 2016 to cover more DC-area Jewish events! Happy holidays.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,000 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 33 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

DC Chanukah Happenings 5776!

courtesy of abkldesigns.com

The winter season is upon us; the weather is getting colder, and people are counting the days until they get a little time off from work or school. Why not warm yourself by the kindling Chanukah lights? Local Jewish groups are getting ready to roll out the red carpet for this well-known religious holiday, which will take place this year from sundown Dec. 6 to sundown Dec. 14. Check these out! Feel free to add more in the comments, and chag sameach.

The Women of Chanukah
For members Of A Certain Age (50+) to discuss texts and stories about women in Chanukah and other times of liberation.
Thursay, Dec. 3, 7 pm, DCJCC

Faygelehs and Bagelehs
For GLOE and related LGBTQ groups, a 21+ Chanukah brunch with mimosas.
Sunday, Dec. 6, 10:30 am, DCJCC

Chanukah at the Ellipse
American Friends of Lubavitch starts off the holiday season with this annual ceremony on the White House lawn.
Sunday, Dec. 6, 4 pm, the Ellipse

Read Between the Latkes
Rabbi Shira leads discussion on Chanukah, with latkes and sufganiyot.
Sunday, Dec. 6, 6 pm, Sixth & I

Hanukkah Happy Hour on the Hill
Annual young adult shindig sponsored by several Jewish organizations. Collection boxes for donations to homeless community charity, D25 at the DCJCC.
Monday, Dec. 7, 6 pm, Capitol Lounge and Station & Greene

Gen X Jews Chanukah Happy Hour
Featuring board games and donations.
Monday, Dec. 7, 6:30 pm, The Board Room

Essentially Chanukah
Not Your Bubbe’s Sisterhood event featuring essential oils, history and benefits for modern day living.
Monday, Dec. 7, 7 pm, Sixth & I

Chanukah Yoga
Jewish-inspired yoga near the Chanukah lights. Can bring your own menorah.
Wednesday, Dec. 9, 6:30 pm, Sixth & I

6th in the City Shabbat: Chanukah Carnival Edition
Musical Shabbat services followed by dinner and carnival amusements, including face painting, balloon animals and games.
Friday, Dec. 11, 6:30 pm, Sixth & I

Chanukah Celebration 2015
Family Chanukah party, featuring a moon bounce, games, crafts, treats and more!
Sunday, Dec. 13, 10 am, DCJCC