Community Activities – including Hanukkah Events

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Chanukah Party (San Leandro)
Community Chanukah Celebration at The Village (Corte Madera)
LatkeFest! (Berkeley)
Kol Emeth Community Chanukah Party (Palo Alto)
Community Menorah Lighting (Redwood City)
Making Room for Shabbat: Chanukah Edition! (Palo Alto)
Rockin’ Shabbat Shira (Redwood City)
DIY Judaism: Let’s Practice Havdalah! (Oakland)
Sam Glaser Concert: “The Promise Tour” (Palo Alto)
Film: From Lone Soldier to Filmmaker (Walnut Creek)
Why Pray? (Lafayette)
DIY Judaism: Let’s Make Challah (Oakland)
Jewish Birth Preparation Class (Palo Alto)

Chanukah Party
Lots of fun, concert with Yonat Mayer, games, delicious homemade latke dinner sponsored by the Sisterhood, candle lighting, and quality time with family and friends. Bring your family’s favorite Chanukiah and 5 candles to light. Everyone is welcome at this fun, free event.

Date: Sat., Nov. 30
Time: 5:30pm
Place: Temple Beth Sholom, 642 Dolores Ave., San Leandro

Community Chanukah Celebration at The Village!
Come join Rodef Sholom, Chabad, and the rest of the Marin Jewish community for a Chanukah Festival of Unity as we light the Chanukah menorah together and celebrate one of the most important messages of Chanukah – the right to religious freedom. You won’t want to miss the festivities, the treats, the crafts, or the singing!

Date: Sunday, December 1
Time: 5:00 pm
Place: The Village, 1618 Redwood Hwy, Corte Madera
If you have questions, call Rodef Sholom, they gave me the info, (415) 479-3441

Join us for our congregation’s annual Chanukah celebration, filled with music, latkes and lights. Our LatkeFest will be held on the Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend to gather as a community and celebrate this holiday of miracles.
The Men’s Club will be busy making their delicious latkes as a grand finale to Thanksgiving weekend. There will be activities for participants of all ages, as well as a wonderful opportunity to light our chanukiot (festive candleholders) together. Bring your chanukiah and candles; we will provide the community and the ruach (spirit).
Please bring with you an unwrapped gift for a teen in Oakland and/or canned food for the Alameda County Food Bank.

Date: Sunday, December 1
Time: 5:00 pm
Place: Beth El, 1301 Oxford, Berkeley

Kol Emeth Community Chanukah Party
Join us for a grand Chanukah celebration! Sing Chanukah songs, watch our courtyard glow with a spectacular community candle-lighting, and win prizes in an exciting game of Chanukah Bingo! Enjoy a delicious Chanukah dinner, including traditional latkes and fresh donuts. We’ll have festivities for all ages to enjoy, and this celebration is open to the whole community!

5:35-6:10 School Chanukah Assembly
6:10-6:25 Community Candle-lighting & Songs (please bring your family’s menorah!)
6:30-7:00 Chanukah Dinner with Latkes & Fresh Donuts
6:45-7:30 Fun Chanukah Activities, including Bingo, Dreidel, Arts & Crafts, and more!

Date: Dec. 3
Time: 5:30pm
Place: Congregation Kol Emeth, 4175 Manuela Ave, Palo Alto
Cost: $10 in advance, $12 at the door.
Families and community members are all invited! Sign up here
Questions? Email Ruthie at

Community Menorah Lighting
Join the fun Community Menorah Lighting – a menorah made out of LEGOs! Donuts, latkes, crafts and music.

Date: Tuesday, December 3
Time: 5:00 pm
Place: 2200 Broadway Street, Courthouse Square, Redwood City
More info call 650-232-0995

Making Room for Shabbat: Chanukah Edition!
Celebrate the warmth and light of Chanukah with a festive Shabbat family service, gourmet dinner, and fun activities for kids. We’ll begin with special Chanukah activities for families with tots, followed by a festive Shabbat evening for all ages to enjoy!

4:30 Tot Chanukah Activities & Early Dinner
5:30 Shabbat Family Service
6:30 Gourmet Chanukah Dinner for All Ages
7:00 Oneg & Schmoozing, with Fun Activities for Kids (grades K-7)

Date: Friday, Dec. 6
Time: 4:30pm
Place: Congregation Kol Emeth, 4175 Manuela Ave, Palo Alto
Cost: $10/adults ~ $5/kids (age 5 thru 7th Grade) ~ kids 4 & under eat free!
RSVP as soon as possible, as space is limited. All RSVPs must be received by Tues, Dec 3rd!
RSVP online
Questions? Email Ruthie at

Rockin’ Shabbat Shira
Come to this much-loved first-Friday musical Shabbat service and dinner! Rockin’ Shabbat is a multigenerational spiritual and social experience, enjoyed by members and friends from newborn to 90+!

Date: Friday, December 6
Time: Service at 6:15 pm Dinner after services – Dinner reservations are required by
Wednesday, December 4.
Place: Congregation Beth Jacob, 1550 Alameda de las Pulgas, Redwood City
You can make your reservation online here

DIY Judaism: Let’s Practice Havdalah!
Havdalah is a wonderful ritual that ends the Sabbath on Saturday evening. It’s a time that gathers loved ones together with a little wine, a candle, and some spices to look forward to a new week. It’s a nice way to spend family time, or to connect with friends. It also affords each of us a moment of awareness to reflect on what we want from the coming week.

Date: Saturday, December 7
Time: 4:00 – 6:00 pm
Place: Private home in Oakland – friends, it’s at my house.
Cost: $20 per family, $10 per person
Register here

Sam Glaser Concert: “The Promise Tour”
Sam Glaser’s soulful music has become part of the fabric of Jewish life in communities worldwide. Named one of the top ten Jewish performers in the US by Moment magazine, he has appeared at such venues as L.A.’s Greek Theater, Universal Amphitheater, Staples Center and Dodger Stadium as well as on Broadway and at the White House.
Sam’s energetic style and passionate delivery never fails to ignite the spirit of audiences of all sizes and age groups. Don’t miss his live performance!

Date: Saturday, Dec. 7
Time: 7pm
Place: Congregation Kol Emeth, 4175 Manuela Ave, Palo Alto
Cost: $5/kids, $8/adults. Family discount: $20 for a family of 4. Tickets sold at the door.
Concert co-sponsored by Congregation Beth David & The Bernard H. and Ruth E. Raskin Educational Endowment Fund at Congregation Kol Emeth

Film: From Lone Soldier to Filmmaker
Filmmaker and former “lone soldier” Ilan Benjamin left Lafayette for Israel when he joined the Israel Defense Forces. Upon completion of his army service, he began studying film at USC. He will read from MASA, his powerful collection of short stories
chronicling his life in the IDF, and screen two of his short films.

Date: Thursday, Dec. 12
Time: 7:30pm
Place: Social Hall of B’nai Shalom, 74 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek
General admission is $7; students free. All are welcome.
A program of the Contra Costa Jewish Book & Arts Festival with author/filmmaker Ilan Benjamin.
Co-sponsored by Congregation B’nai Shalom, Diablo Valley Hadassah and Friends of the Israel Defense Force.

Why Pray?
Jewish prayer has been around since biblical times. With the destruction of the second Temple in 70 CE, prayer became a more formal way for Jews to offer “avodah” (worship/sacrifice) to God as a community. That being said, many Jews find the experience of prayer today to be alienating, frustrating, challenging, boring, or all of the above. In this class, we will address the philosophy and theology behind Jewish prayer and wrestle with our own personal ways to answer the questions “Why pray (in general)?” and “Why pray as a community with fixed liturgy at fixed times?”
Taught by Rabbi Nicki Greninger.

Date: Sunday, Dec. 15
Time: 11:15am
Place: Temple Isaiah, 945 Risa Road, Lafayette
RSVP here
Free of charge.

DIY Judaism: Let’s Make Challah
Everyone loves the smell of baking bread or the taste of warm homemade bread from the oven. Do you wish you could make delicious challah for Shabbat, but don’t consider yourself a baker or are short on time?
Join us in the kitchen, and we’ll quickly put your mind at ease. We’ll talk about the secrets of baking, the power of food as a part of ritual, and favorite recipes for challah.
Experienced bakers are welcome to come and brag about their fabulous recipe. Just be sure to bring copies of the recipe for everyone. Everyone will go home with a loaf of bread, a packet of ideas, and the confidence to bake challah like a professional.

Date: Sunday, December 15
Time: 4:00 – 6:00 pm
Place: Private home in Oakland
Cost: $20/person
Register here

Jewish Birth Preparation Class
The birthing class with a Jewish twist! The class will cover information related to the birth process (anatomy, stages of labor, pain management, etc.) and Jewish rituals and traditions around birth and babies (planning a welcoming ceremony, choosing a name, parenting from a Jewish perspective, etc.). The class is designed to be a one-stop shop for expectant parents and can take the place of a birthing class offered by local hospitals and birthing centers. Become informed and make friends!

Date: 6 sessions beginning Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014
Time: 6 to 9pm
Place: Parents Place, 200 Channing Ave., Palo Alto.
Cost is $200 per couple.
To register for the class please go here. For more information, please contact Program Director, Jen Wolosin at

Jewish Funeral Customs
What are the traditional customs of a Jewish funeral? How do we deal with them, and with mourning practices, if we are an interfaith family? Why should we plan far ahead of the time? What should we consider in planning? What if we want cremation or other elements that are not in keeping with Jewish tradition? How do we get started?

Robert Malinow, Beth Am member and the Peninsula/South Bay’s Managing Funeral Director at Sinai Memorial Chapel will join Rabbi Sarah Weissman to address such questions in a relaxed, pressure-free setting. You will be encouraged to ask any questions you may have. You will also have time to begin a personal worksheet that can help you with the decisions to be made.

Date: Sunday, January 19, 2014
Time: 4:00 pm
Place: Beth Am, Rooms 5/6,
Co-Sponsored by Gesharim, the Interfaith Outreach Committee, Building Jewish Bridges, and Lehrhaus Judaica