Shabbat & Holidays

Shabbat and Holidays at the EDCJCC

Holiday programs available for families and individuals of all ages.

The EDCJCC is excited to welcome you for Sukkot, from October 9-16. Join us outdoors all week to celebrate the holiday, experience the change of seasons, and to recall the time when the Jewish people were transitioning from one land to another, living in temporary dwellings. We will have two sukkahs this year: one traditional sukkah in our parking lot and one artistic interpretation on the Sixteenth Street Steps.

The Sixteenth Street Sukkah concept was created by contemporary Jewish artist Hillel Smith, in partnership with Mosaic Visions. Sukkot commemorates the journeys of our ancestors and the refuge they found in their wandering. Each wall of this sukkah is covered in documents attesting to the global journeys of the families of three individuals: a Jew by choice, a Jew of color, and a Jew of Ashkenazi descent. The family histories of these D.C. artists and leaders are just a tiny glimpse of the multitudes of Jewish stories. By stepping inside the sukkah, we literally and metaphorically surround ourselves with history, recognizing the paths our ancestors took to allow us to be here today.  We all come from somewhere, and as we sit in these temporary homes during sukkot, we can reflect on the words of the shehechiyanu blessing, thanking God who “granted us life, sustained us, and brought us to this moment.” Just as the transparent walls allow us to look out and see 16th Street, highlighting our location here in Washington, D.C., we are also inviting visitors to bring their own family stories and experiences to contribute to the collective work of art.

Contact Amanda Herring, Director of Jewish Life and Learning, to reserve space in one of our two sukkahs. See the calendar below for our community events this week.

Upcoming Events

Oct
11
Tue
Pickling for Sukkot
Oct 11 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
pickling

As the leaves turn and temperatures drop we welcome the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, a harvest festival. With the summer’s bounty coming to an end, many people turn to pickling, canning, and otherwise preserving the flavors of summer for the winter months ahead.

Join Manager of Jewish life, Amanda Herring, in the Sukkah in the EDCJCC parking lot to learn all about pickling and preserving for the Sukkot holiday. Taste different kinds of pickles, and make your own garlic dilly beans.

You will go home with jars containing the pickles you made which will be complete in about a week!

Date: Tuesday, October 11
Time: 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

BUY WITH CONFIDENCE: If your plans need to change due to COVID concerns or local ordinance changes, we will work with you to exchange or credit your ticket toward a comparable program or activity on a future date. We know life is unpredictable these days, and the EDCJCC is here for you!
Oct
12
Wed
JFamily Sukkot in the Beer Garden
Oct 12 @ 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Celebrate Sukkot with fellow JFamilies under the Dacha pergola! Children of all ages welcome. We’ve secured space for 25 people, so please make sure to RSVP for the total number of children and adults you will be bringing. Free! Refreshments not included.

This program is brought to you by the Edlavitch DCJCC and funded by The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and The United Jewish Endowment Fund.

Celebrate Sukkot with Jews of Color and their Families
Oct 12 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Lasting eight days, the holiday of Sukkot has many themes and is a chance to reflect on the seasons, the nature of home, the bounty of the harvest time, and much more. It is a holiday full of flavors and smells – from the piney scent of the citron fruit to the juiciness of pomegranate seeds. Join other Jews of Color and their families to take in the smells and tastes of this special holiday, to sit in our sukkah, and to consider what “home” might mean when it is temporary. All activities will be kid-friendly, and a light dinner will be served.

Please note this holiday celebration is specifically curated for community members who identify as Jews of Color and for their families. If you do not identify as being part of this community, we invite you to attend a different Sukkot event happening at the EDCJCC instead.

When: Wednesday, October 12, from 6:00 – 8:00 PM

Where: The Edlavitch DC Jewish Community Center’s parking lot and Sukkah!
Please note: In case of inclement weather this program will be cancelled.

COVID-19 Info: Currently, masks in public spaces at the EDCJCC are optional but we encourage and embrace everyone to do what feels best and most safe for themselves and their families. Proof of vaccination is no longer required to enter the building.

Questions? Contact Sonya Weisburd at sonyaw@edcjcc.org

RSVP: This event is free but we kindly request you RSVP to help us ensure we have enough food! Click on the red “Sign me up!” button to proceed to registration.

This event is brought to you in partnership with Khazbar, Mosaic Visions, Washington Hebrew Congregation’s JOC Affinity Group, and Adas Israel Congregation’s Jews of Color Affinity Group.

Oct
13
Thu
Immigration Film Festival: My DACA Life
Oct 13 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

This year’s Immigration Film Festival explores the nature of HOME. Is it a place, a safe space, a feeling, a memory, a person, or something more? Join us for two in-person screenings of films exploring this theme as we celebrate the holiday of Sukkot, sitting in makeshift shelters and remembering the Jewish people’s wanderings through many deserts both real and figurative.

WHEN: Thursday, October 13
Doors open at 7:00 PM, program starts 7:30 PM

 

FILMS:
Pipi Thay Too
Directed by Laura Alice | 10 min

In Pipi Thay Too (The Grandmother Tree) Artist, Director and Mentor Laura Alice joins with young refugee women in a unique collaboration to animate their paintings and tell their personal stories: from fleeing the brutal genocidal regime in their native Myranmar homeland to journeying to refugee camps and finally settling in Australia.  The result is a beautiful animated film celebrating resilience, the power of identity, mystical encounters with ancestors and the Karen and Karenni refugee experience.

US Premiere of My DACA Life (Mi Vida DACA)
Directed by Fanny Grande | 70 min

My DACA Life (Mi Vida DACA) aims to answer the question “What is home?” While in high school, Maribel discovered that she is an undocumented immigrant. For years she lived in fear of getting deported from the only country she knew. Then, in 2012, Maribel benefited from Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the action enacted by President Barack Obama that allowed her to get a work permit and exemption from deportation. After 25 years of being undocumented, she was  allowed to visit Mexico. We follow her as she visits her birthplace in hopes of finding answers to the question: where does she belong? Then Donald Trump was elected president, and he rescinded DACA. Maribel and fellow immigrants raise their voices in support of dreamers by marching, and going to Washington D.C. to meet with lawmakers and advocate for immigration reform.

Film screening will be followed by a panel discussion on the state of DACA with the filmmaker and special guests.

WHERE: The Edlavitch DCJCC’s Cafritz Hall

This program is brought to you by the Edlavitch DCJCC’s JxJ and Center for Social Responsibility in partnership with the Immigration Film Festival 

Oct
15
Sat
Immigration Film Festival: Any Day Now
Oct 15 @ 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm

This year’s Immigration Film Festival explores the nature of HOME. Is it a place, a safe space, a feeling, a memory, a person, or something more? Join us for two in-person screenings of films exploring this theme as we celebrate the holiday of Sukkot, sitting in makeshift shelters and remembering the Jewish people’s wanderings through many deserts both real and figurative.

WHEN: Saturday, October 15
Doors open at 5:30 PM, program starts 6:00 PM

 

FILMS:
Tonewood
Directed by Shahram Shahangi | 16 min
A Bavarian master instrument maker has to hire an immigrant Iranian master in his workshop to save himself from bankruptcy. The two master carpenters, both specializing in building chopping boards, have to overcome their cultural differences and language barrier to complete a crucial order that could potentially save their joinery. We see two worlds collide and observe the development of the protagonists as they approach each other.

DC Premiere of Any Day Now
Directed by Hamy Ramezan | 81 min
13 year old Ramin Mehdipour and his Iranian family have been living in a refugee center in Finland. Just as Ramin starts to enjoy the school holidays, the family receives the terrible news their asylum application has been denied. The Mehdipours file a final appeal, and they continue with their everyday lives, trying to keep a positive attitude despite the looming danger of deportation. As Ramin starts the new school year, every moment, every friendship will be more precious than ever.

The screenings will be followed by a panel discussion on creating a home for asylum seekers.

WHERE: The Edlavitch DCJCC’s Cafritz Hall

This program is brought to you by the Edlavitch DCJCC’s JxJ and Center for Social Responsibility in partnership with the Immigration Film Festival 

Oct
16
Sun
JFamily Sukkah Party
Oct 16 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

Join us in the EDCJCC Sukkah for a fun morning of stories, snacks, and friends. Geared toward ages 0-4, but all are welcome! Free to attend, but please RSVP so we know how many to expect.

This program is brought to you by the Edlavitch DCJCC and funded by The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and The United Jewish Endowment Fund.

Nov
4
Fri
Tot Shabbat Songs in the Lot
Nov 4 @ 5:30 pm – 6:00 pm

Join us for Tot Shabbat in the EDCJCC Parking Lot. This lively 30-minute Shabbat song session is geared toward children under five years old and their parents, grandparents, and caregivers. Together we will sing, dance, say the Shabbat blessings together, and enjoy challah and snacks. Bring a blanket, and feel free to hang out and have a dinner picnic afterwards.

Have fun celebrating Shabbat and making new friends!

This program is brought to you by the Edlavitch DCJCC and funded by The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and The United Jewish Endowment Fund.

Nov
13
Sun
JFamily Challah Bake
Nov 13 @ 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Join JFamily Ambassador Melissa for an afternoon of challah baking! All materials will be provided. Geared toward ages 2-5, but all are welcome. Cost is $5 per family; space is limited, so RSVP soon!

Exact address will be provided upon registration.

Dec
3
Sat
Havdalah and Lantern Walk
Dec 3 @ 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm

As the days grow shorter and darkness increases, join JFamily to bring in some extra light with a special lantern-making havdalah experience! Each child will have a chance to create a lantern that we’ll use for a special pre-havdalah walk. Then, as a community, we’ll bid farewell to Shabbat and prepare for a wonderful new week through the sensory ritual of havdalah.

This program is geared towards families with children ages 0-6. We’ll have all the lantern supplies, but we encourage families to bring flashlights to add some extra light and fun as children explore!

This program is brought to you by the Edlavitch DCJCC and funded by The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and The United Jewish Endowment Fund.