Start Planning for Passover Fun!

Time to plan where you’ll have Seder!  At a community Seder, someone else’s home, or your home?

Rarely are community Seders on the FIRST night of Passover. But if you don’t have time or an invitation it’s a lovely, easy way to share the event.
Here’s a list of Bay Area Community Seders compiled by the J-weekly. Bless them for compiling this! It takes a lot of time!

Are you a guest? Ask what you can bring – a side dish, another Seder plate (ready to go)? If there is nothing to bring, consider a hostess gift – kosher chocolates or wine are good options, as are flowers.

Are YOU hosting? Well, that’s a lot of work, but don’t keep it all to yourself. Assign tasks and dishes to your guests; it will give them a greater feeling of engagement and confidence.
Make a list of what you’ll need. Here’s a list online.

Will your Seder be Long or Short, Traditional or Modern?
Make your Seder table AMAZING!
What haggadah will you use? There are so many downloadable haggadahs and many more in any Jewish bookstore (See Afikomen). Visit or call Afikomen and discuss your needs with the owners, Chaim or Nell, and have your chosen haggadah mailed to you.

Once you have ANY haggadah it will have directions for the Seder. You don’t have to do ALL the readings, you don’t have to get hungry or tired. I recently had a Seder with a Jew who had been taught, “You’re a Jew; that’s all.” We had a very basic, explanatory Seder with lots of discussion and enthusiasm. Fit your Seder to your guests. They will learn more when they are having fun.

Got more specific questions? Join me April 16 at 7pm on Zoom for a wild ride through the Seder!  See Mastering the Interfaith, Intercultural Multigenerational Seder below.


Welcome Week – JCC South Shabbat Shmooze (Mill Valley)
Poetry Shabbat (Walnut Creek)
Shabbat in Nature (Los Gatos)
Tree Walk with Canopy (Palo Alto)
Mishpacha Kabbalat Shabbat (Berkeley)
Spring into Summer J-Camp Open House (Palo Alto)
Mastering the Interfaith, Intercultural Multigenerational Seder (On Zoom)
Passover Congregational Seder (Richmond)


Welcome Week – JCC South Shabbat Shmooze
 Join us to celebrate Shabbat and the launch of our new JCC South site in Mill Valley. Come and see the new space and meet your fellow community members as we bring in the Shabbos spirit with live jazz music from Duo Gadjo Band, and a wine tasting with Ruby Blanca. No registration required. Just show and up celebrate with us.

Date:   Friday, April 5
Time:   4:30–6:00pm
Place:   JCC South, 36 Tiburon Blvd, Mill Valley
Presented by Taube Center for Jewish Peoplehood
More info here

Poetry Shabbat
As the flowers bloom outside and the we turn our hearts to spring, join us for our second Poetry Shabbat. We will sit in the round and move through a contemplative service that fluctuates between music and poetry. Immerse yourself in a beautiful selection of words and rhythm that will ease us into Shabbat together. Bring your favorite poem to share and come with an open heart.

Date;   Friday, April 5
Time:   6:30 pm
Place:   In-Person at B’nai Tikvah, 25 Hillcroft Way, Walnut Creek
Please register here.

Shabbat in Nature
Join Clergy and Docent Naturalists Nancy Weintraub and Bobbie Riedel for an early “Earth Day” experience  at our springtime Shabbat in Nature. You will enjoy a leisurely stroll uphill to enjoy panoramic views of Santa Clara Valley, Sierra Azul and Lexington Reservoir. This is a 3.7 mile loop with a bit of a climb (750 ft) along the Jones, Manzanita, Range, and Novitiate Trail Loop.  We will stop for a snack break halfway.
Bring a snack/light lunch and at least one liter of water.  Hiking poles would be helpful for the first part of the hike.  Meet by and park at Lexington Reservoir Parking area ($6 fee) although there are a few spots outside the parking area which are free.

Date:   Saturday, April 6
Time:   9:00am – 12:30pm
Place:   St. Joseph’s Hill Open Space Preserve (Los Gatos)
Host:   Temple Emanu-El, 1010 University Ave, San Jose
Please sign up here

Tree Walk with Canopy: a Center for Social Impact Project
Oshman Family JCC is excited to be joining Canopy for a family friendly tree walk through Juana Briones Park where we will learn about the trees, what makes a tree healthy and which animals call them home. This morning stroll is complete with a scavenger hunt and a picnic with their arborist! We look forward to learning about the trees with you!

Canopy plants and cares for trees where people need them the most. Their mission is to grow urban tree canopy in Midpeninsula communities for the benefit of all. This tree walk offers an opportunity to spend time outdoors and enjoy the life-giving benefits of trees while learning about your local urban forest.

Date:   Sunday, April 7
Time:   10am – 12pm
Place:   Juana Briones Park, 609 Maybell Avenue Palo Alto
Cost:    $10/individual; $20/family of 4.
Register here
Host:   Oshman Family JCC (aka Palo Alto JCC)


Mishpacha Kabbalat Shabbat (Family Welcoming Shabbat)
Let’s celebrate Shabbat together! Families with children 0-5 can join us for an early evening of Passover-themed play, Shabbat songs, and playtime in the preschool. After the candle lighting, families can eat a kosher, kid-friendly dinner at 5:15 pm in the preschool classroom and yard. If you are staying for the Mishpacha dinner, price is $5 per person. Please consider donating more to help support continued Mishpacha programming.

Date:   Friday, April 12
Time:   4:30pm
Place:   Netivot Shalom, 1316 University Ave, Berkeley
Deadline to RSVP for the child-friendly dinner is Friday April 12 at 9:00am. Register here.

Spring into Summer J-Camp Open House
Bring your whole family to a fun-filled day and get a glimpse at what J-Camp has to offer with a light touch of Passover holiday flair!
Enjoy a free kosher-style hot dog BBQ, carnival games, bounce house and tie dye.
For families with school-aged children
Ready to sign up? Visit!

Date:   Sunday, April 14
Time:   11:00am – 1:00pm
Place:   Freidenrich Community Park, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto
Contact: (650) 223-8622 |


Mastering the Interfaith, Intercultural Multigenerational Seder
It can be a challenge to have everyone from your neighbor’s toddler to your great uncle coming to your Seder. Will people be bored? Will they get hungry? Will the kids wander from the table eliciting grumbling from other guests? Come discuss ways to engage different ages from infant to school age to teen to adults. As well as people of other faiths and cultures.

We’ll cover:
Interactive games
How to bring in the non-Jewish family & friends
Food during the Seder
Haggadahs for different groups
15 Steps to a complete Seder
How to cut your Seder time down to manageable

Date:   Tuesday, April 16
Time:   7 to 8pm
Place:   Zoom, email me at for the link

Passover Congregational Seder
Join our congregation in the retelling of the Passover story.  Enjoy ritual foods and wines, sing holiday melodies, and share a delicious meal together.
Vegan option available. Seating is limited ~ Reserve early.

Date:   Saturday, April 27
Time:   6pm
Place:   Temple Beth Hillel, 801 Park Central (Hilltop exit off I-80), Richmond
510-223-2560 |
For reservations or questions, visit Community Seder; to contact the synagogue email or call – or 510-223-2560