Celebrate International Diversity

The Simpsons, Jewish Christmas, Global Shabbat this fall with the JCC


by Dr. Mara Balk
JCC Program Director

Back in the Beckerman Lender building for the first season kick-off since 2016, the JCC will utilize its updated program spaces for a host of stimulating books, films, and food. Children and families, teens, intellectuals, foodies, and film buffs will each find something to sink their teeth into this fall.

Jewish authors visiting Greater New Haven hail from prestigious and admirable arenas. Distinguished ambassador Wendy Sherman, previous a key aide to Secretary of State, Madeline Albright, and lead negotiator on the 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal, combines personal storytelling and expert insight in “Not for the Faint of Heart” on October 14; and Bristol, Connecticut, native Mike Reiss, who offers a humorous look at the writing and making of the legendary Fox Series “The Simpsons” in “Springfield Confidential,” will be “selling laughs” on November 29.

The Third Annual International Festival returns to the JCC on Sunday, October 21, with music, performances, and tables from local cultural groups. The Second Annual Great Big Challah Bake later that week on October 25 is another exciting perennial for children and families. The Challah Bake is presented with support from the Women of Vision Society, and coincides with the global phenomenon, “The Shabbos Project,” which promotes a worldwide celebration of Shabbat October 26-27. Families can look to PJ Library for additional Shabbat activities with several “Tot Shabbat” events at Massaro Community Farm in Woodbridge in September and October.

Learners of all ages are encouraged to join us at the Community building for classes and workshops in our new MakerSpace. Opened in February, 2018, the re-purposed office space now plays host to woodworking, 3D printing, crafting, tinkering, and more. Children have been hammering away in the afterschool, vacation, camp, and Nitzanim programs, and adults have created pottery, floral, and gardening projects galore. The fun will continue with flower arranging, board art, knitting, and candlemaking, as well as some making-for-charity projects. Kids will be invited to join the “Maker Club” or spend a “Crafternoon” with peers and instructor David Bennett.

Greater New Haven’s annual “Evening of Jewish Learning,” A Taste of Honey, is back for its 23rd year, on Saturday, November 17. This year’s event will include special guests from Israel’s Afula-Gilboa region to host a panel around inter-religion advocacy. Jewish educators and teens will each have specialized programming as well, with the traditional twoworkshop format offering topics for adult learners.

Finally, guests are invited to join us on Sunday, December 23, for a screening of “Dreaming of a Jewish Christmas,” followed by a kosher Chinese nosh. The documentary details a group of Jewish composers who created the soundtrack of Christmas, with songs like “White Christmas,” “Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer,” and “Do You Hear What I Hear.”

For a full listing of events, visit jccnh.org/community_ calendar, or contact the Programming Department at (203) 387-2424, x228.


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