Tuesday, April 27, 2010

We Want YOU!

Hi friends,

(Pardon the corny introduction, big life changes make me sappy)

Graduation is in less than a month, and, like the rest of the senior class, I have been ruminating on my Wesleyan experience. One of the most important aspects on my time here has most definitely been the Jewish community, particularly my relationships with you. Even though we may not have been especially close, your names were the first to pop into my mind when I thought of the Havurah over the past 4 years. You were, are, and continue to be a significant part of the WesJewCrew.

So here's my proposal:

I'd like to compile a binder containing important information regarding the Jewish community. This could mean memories, photographs, stories, recipes, songs, poems, etc. It could - and should - also include more concrete things: Shabbat service themes, where to get the best Kosher for Passover food, Adath Israel point people, syllabi for student forums (hint, hint). Any and all advice for planning events and programs is especially welcome.

You can spend as much or as little time on this as you are able, but please send me at least a little something? This would be a great way of keeping traditions we love alive.

Please forward to all of your friends from the Jewish community! Especially alums!

Let me know if you have any questions, concerns, concerns, critiques, cookies - or if you want to help out!


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Happy early Hanukkah!

A gift for you during pre-finals week, courtesy of Utah Senator Orrin Hatch.


Nope, I'm serious. According to today's New York Times, the lifelong Republican also dabbles in songwriting (who can forget his 2004 hit "Heal Our Land"? Certainly not anyone who supported John Kerry's campaign...). He wrote "8 Days of Hanukkah" as a "gift to the Jewish people."

Eight Days of Hanukkah from Tablet Magazine on Vimeo.

My personal favorite moments?
When the senator flashes his mezzuzah chain. Bling, bling.

An unexpected contributor to your holiday playlist, sure, but 'tis the season for giving and sharing, right? Gawker might not be a fan, but what do you think of Sen. Hatch's new jam? Will we be hearing it around the Bayit anytime soon?

- Franni

Chanukah Party at the Bayit!

Classy, jazzy chanukah party this Saturday night at the Bayit! Dress your chanukah best and come listen to live jazz, eat latkes, play dreidel, and relax with friends before the stress of finals descends.

We are still accepting jazz artists so if you know someone who would like to play (and is good) please have them contact me asap!

Where: the Bayit
When: Saturday night, 9-11 pm
Cost: Freeeeeeee

Monday, October 5, 2009

(Epic) Sukkah sleepover

You may remember that last year the community held an epic Sukkah sleepover extravaganza. Some of you may even be lucky enough to remember being there, in which case you know how epic it was. Suffice it to say that it included such features as Jack-o-lantern carving, Michael Roth playing the banjo, and the Amazing Sam Kachuck sleeping through the noisy fun.

Now we have a bambooey new Sukkah in a hilly new location. What surprises will there be this year? Current and former Wes students visiting from NYC? Homemade applesauce? Barack Obama? I can promise that at LEAST one of those will be happening.

Of course you are all welcome and encouraged to sleep/eat/work/levitate in the Sukkah any and every day. That being said, this particular sleepover extravaganza will be Thursday night - Friday morning, October 8-9. I will be getting there around 8 or 9 pm, but feel free to come earlier and have dinner there or come later or just pop in and out whenever you feel like it. Unless it's raining really hard, we'll be out there.

Bring a sleeping bag as it will probably be cold. If you don't have one you should be able to borrow one from Outhouse (they may or may not charge a couple bucks for this, I can't remember). I have one tarp but if anyone has another or something else that we could put down between our sleeping bags and the ground please bring it. Other optional items to bring: musical instruments, snacks, stuff you want to do/talk about.

Contact dkieval(at)wes with any questions.

Chag sameach. Remember to celebrate and be happy all week -- it's commanded!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sukkot events

We are so excited about our new sukkah on foss hill!

We trekked up Church Street to eat a delicious shabbat dinner in the hut on Friday, despite less-than-ideal weather conditions. The dedication ceremony on Saturday also went well - there was TONS of food (most of which was later devoured at the camping trip reunion).

More sukkot events for the week:

Monday 10/5 at 6:15PM: Pizza in the Hut
Thursday 10/8: Sukkah sleepover

Contact Dan K (dkieval@wes) with questions, comments or cookies!

...And don't forget about the Simchat Torah Party at the Bayit on Saturday (facebook event here)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Yom Kippur @ Wes

September 27 (SUN):

Dinner 5:00 PM, Usdan Campus Center (left dining hall)

Evening services/Kol Nidre 6:15 PM Beckham Hall

September 28 (MON):

Morning service 10 AM: Beckham Hall
Concluding service time approx. 5:15 PM

(in between services, feel free to hang out at the Bayit!)

7:00PM Havdallah followed by lox and bagels break-the-fast at Daniel Family Commons

Friday, September 18, 2009

Rosh Hashanah @ Wes

September 18 (FRI):

Apples and Honey at Alpha Delta Phi, 3:30 PM

Evening service 7 PM at Beckham Hall
Followed by special festive dinner at aprox. 8:00PM in Usdan 108

September 19 (SAT):

Morning service, 10 AM at Beckham Hall
Lunch following services, 1:00 PM at Usdan 108
Evening service 7 PM, Adath Israel (meet at the Bayit to walk down together)

September 20 (SUN):

Morning service, 8:30 AM, Adath Israel

Tashlich River Walk Eco Ritual, meet at the Bayit at 4 PM

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Havdallah on Home

Hi everyone,

I hope the first week of classes is finding you well! I am writing to invite you all to participate in the final Havdallah ceremony of the year 5769.

For those of you who don't know, Havdallah is a weekly Jewish ritual that marks the end of Shabbos and the beginning of the new week, involving singing, dancing, some spices, a candle, and a glass of wine. Intrigued?

Then come to our house, 48 Home Avenue, this Saturday, September 12, at 7 pm, for snacks, followed by a short and sweet Havdallah ceremony outside around 7:45.

Home Avenue is the street that intersects with Lawn Avenue near the back of the Science Center, between Brainard and Church. Our house is towards the end on the left side. Let me (Emily H.) know if you would like to help prepare or participate.

Lots of love,
Emily Hoffman, Sam Schilit, Franni Paley, David Baranger, and Emily Sheehan

Shabbat 9/11/09

Shalom Y'all!

Syd Berkman and David Baranger will be leading Friday night services tomorrow. Services begin at 6:15pm, and they are held in the common room of the Bayit, 157 Church St.
As always, there will be a delicious home-cooked kosher meal following services at 7:30pm!
Feel free to come to both services and dinner, or one or the other.

Also, there will be Havdallah and snacks Saturday night at 48 Home Ave.

Be well, and see you soon!

3rd Annual Jewish Community Pre-orientation Camping Trip

Instead of spending their final few days before college frantically packing and saying goodbyes, 17 incoming frosh, Jews and Gentiles alike, headed out to Connecticut on August 31st for two days of fun in the sun in Southbury, about an hour from campus. For two days and nights they came together as a community along with seven upperclassmen, all active members of the Havurah. Together, we hiked in the forest, swam in the lake, played games in the grass, and sang and danced around the campfire. We dished about life at Wesleyan, from classes to parties to the Jewish community, and at the end of the trip there was an emotional moment as we all opened up about our hopes and fears for the coming year. It was sad to leave the peaceful bliss of Kettletown State Park behind, but both comforting and exciting to know that we would each be returning to school with 23 new and strengthened friendships (and a new Facebook group).