PROGRAMMING FOR active retirees

The Edlavitch DCJCC warmly welcomes adults of all ages and life stages to join us for nourishing your mind, body, and spirit.

Whether it’s watching powerful films, attending live theater and music, joining us in holiday celebrations, engaging in deep learning through several language and other classes, or getting a workout in our fitness center and pool, we hope you will join us!

As we have operated since the very beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, your health and safety are ALWAYS our top priority. See the EDCJCC’s Covid-19 policies and safety measures for more information.

Upcoming Events

Mindful sAGING interest session
Mar 22 @ 10:30 am – 11:30 am

Come for an informal interest session to learn more about the wise sAGING course at the EDCJCC. Meet the instructor, De Herman, grab some coffee and tea, and see if this is the right class for you! We are holding this interest session to see if we have enough interest to run the full 7-week course, so please come if you’d like this course to happen!

The class is based on the work of Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi (From Age-ing to-Sage-ing: A Revolutionary Approach to Growing Older) and Rabbi Rachel Cowan & Linda Thal (Wise Aging: Living With Joy, Resilience and Spirit).

Topics include:
• exploring this stage of life
• becoming one’s authentic self
• life review
• relating with one’s body
• revitalizing and nourishing healthy relationships
• practicing forgiveness
• learning to live with loss
• change and death
• leaving a legacy
The class format includes discussion, experiential exercises, meditation, journaling, and text study.

Facilitator De Herman is an ordained Rabbinic Pastor and Spiritual Director and served as a hospice chaplain until retiring in 2019. She received a certificate as a Sage-ing Mentor in the Age-ing to Sage-ing program, offered by Rabbi Nadya Gross and Rabbi Victor Gross. De is an active member and lay leader of Temple Emanuel in Kensington, MD and a Director of Studies for Rabbinic Pastor students of the ALEPH Ordination Program. She derives great pleasure from bicycling, gardening, cooking, writing, and making calligraphic art.

Writing for Breakfast
Mar 28 @ 10:15 am – 11:40 am

Introductory free writing class taught by Rabbi Tamara Miller! We’ll serve coffee, bagels and fruit for nourishment. Bring a friend or two to experience this unique class! You do not need to be a member to attend.

Tuesday, March 28 in the EDCJCC library

10:15-10:35 AM: Networking, eating, talking
10:40-11:40 AM: Writing exercises, story-telling, sharing, questions answered

Soul Writing Circle
Apr 4 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm

Soul Writing Circles – Three part class series for our Active Retirees Club (ARC)

What is it? A weekly in-person community Soul Writer’s Circle that brings members of the community together, so they can use the joint space to write. The method is based on the guidance of Rabbi Tamara Miller who will facilitate the writer’s circle by providing a meaningful prompt using Jewish texts. This prompt then encourages the individual to write freely in an unconstrained way. Participants will be encouraged to read their writing out loud to the group.

What is it not: It is not a place to critique someone’s writing style, thoughts, or to give opinions on someone’s actual writing, it rather is a safe shared physical and spiritual space, where people that usually wouldn’t write, are given this opportunity to take pen to paper and to physically engage in the cathartic and explorative writing process.


Tuesdays: April 4, April 11, April 18

Annual Second Night Community Sustainability Seder
Apr 6 @ 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Annual Second Night Community Seder

Join us for our wonderful Second Night Seder – the open, welcoming, pluralistic celebration of freedom you’ve come to expect from the EDCJCC.

Registration deadline, March 24th 8:00 AM

At the Seder, we find joy in intergenerational community, storytelling, and song. Join us to meet new friends, partake in joyous singing accompanied by a guitar, and have meaningful discussions with your friends, family, and neighbors.

Our Seder will feature a delicious kosher-for-Passover meal. We’re serving DC rooftop-grown parsley, and 100% compostable plate ware with composting services generously provided by our sponsor CompostCab. Amanda Herring, Director of Jewish Life and Living, will guide you through the Seder accompanied by Ari Jacobson’s beautiful singing and guitar.

Whether this is your first Seder or your 100th, there’s a place at our Passover table for you!

Seder Menu for 2023 (subject to change)

  • Gefilte Fish with horseradish
  • Butternut Squash soup
  • Potato Kugel
  • Stuffed Peppers with farfel and veggies
  • Walnut crusted rainbow trout
  • Israeli Salad
  • Seder Plate classics
  • Desert assortment

Ticket Prices:

Adult Ticket: $72.00
EntryPointDC/Young Adult: $54.00
Child (under 12): $36.00

Need assistance? We’re looking for volunteers to help set up and check folks in. We have limited volunteer pricing available. Please reach out to

Seder Leaders:

ARS_1286v2.jpgAmanda Herring is the Director of Jewish Life and Learning at the Edlavitch DCJCC. In 2018, Amanda received her Master’s in Experiential Education and Jewish Cultural Arts at GW, and completed the JOFEE Fellowship in Jewish, Outdoor, Food, Farming and Environmental Education. It was there that she combined her passions for Shabbat and sustainable food which together can nourish and heal communities and ecosystems. Amanda is also the CEO of Gold Herring, co-creater of the Jewish Planner and the Omer Self-Care Workbook, a dance instructor and pickler. Amanda lives in Northeast DC with her partner, Greg and their kids: Abraham, Simkha, and Mensch (the dog).



thumbnail_Austrian Embassy 2019 Square.pngSong leader Ari Jacobson has been involved in music, Judaism, education, and various overlaps of the three for as long as he can remember. While studying music and theatre at UMass Amherst, he honed his song leading skills at URJ’s Eisner Camp in Great Barrington, MA. Since moving to the DMV two years ago, Ari has been happily providing music for the EDCJCC’s programs for all ages, from baby classes with the parenting center to pre-school music to various community events like this one. Also an actor and a singer/songwriter, Ari can be seen as Mikey Thomas in The Kennedy Center’s Shear Madness, and his original music can be found on his website

Seder FAQ:

Do I have to be Jewish to attend? (Observant? Old? Young? Ashkenazi? Sephardic? etc.)
Nope. We welcome everyone who would like to join our community-wide seder and celebrate Passover’s lessons of freedom! In fact, every year, we have a beautiful mix of people. Some are Jewish, and some are not. All are welcome, and (if they choose) can easily participate in a variety of ways – singing, reading, discussing ideas, or just generally being among the community.

What if I don’t read Hebrew?
Not a problem. Most of the seder is in English, and most readings in Hebrew also appear with English transliteration.

What about dinner? Is it kosher?
There is a delicious catered Kosher-for-Passover dinner at the community-wide seder. This is a vegetarian meal – and of course we’ll have dessert! Please let us know about any allergies in your registration.

We’re happy to provide ASL or other interpretation upon advance notice. The Edlavitch DCJCC building is wheelchair/mobility device accessible. If you need other accommodations to allow you to fully participate in the Seder (or simply have questions), please let us know in advance and we’ll be happy to help.

Is there a dress code? What should I wear?
There is no official dress code. Most people dress as they would for a family Seder or holiday – dressed nicely, a little dressed up, but not overly formally. (For many people that could mean a button-down or sweater, a skirt/dress, a jacket, slacks, etc. Most people do not wear jeans.) Please wear what feels appropriate to you to celebrate the holiday.

Is it appropriate to bring kids?
Yes! This is not specifically a “kids” Seder, but our atmosphere is fun and festive! We welcome all who would like to participate.

Was your question not answered? Email Amanda so we can help!

About our sponsor:

Compost Cab is providing their composting services for this event along with discounts for new home composting customers who attend!

Image is of the Compost Cab logo and it says: Community Composting Made Easy Since 2010

Book Club for Active Retirees
Apr 20 @ 10:30 am – 12:00 pm

The third Thursday book group is a convivial meeting of book lovers. The group chooses its reading list and meets from 10:30 AM to 12 PM on the third Thursday of the month (except for July and August) via google meet. Our next meeting is April 20 and the reading is Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury If you are interested in joining the group, please contact Jane Flax (