Urban Jews PDX Meetup Group Message Board › Events and Passover!

Events and Passover!

Sarah L.
Group Organizer
Portland, OR

This email includes new information on our incredible events this weekend and next including:

1) NEW: Belated Purim Party with Vagabond Opera - this Saturday night at 10 pm
2) Darfur - What Can We Do this Saturday night at 8pm
3) NEW: Rosh Hodesh Group - this Sunday night at 6 pm
4) Lecture and Discussion with Rabbi Telushkin this Sunday at 7:30
5) Film Festival at the Laurelhurst Theater with films by young Israelis - next Sunday at 12:30 pm.
All event details are below.

Passover: I have also gathered a whole bunch of options for Passover whether you want to make your own seder or attend one. I know it seems far away but community seders can fill up. If you would like more help finding a seder, let me know.


Tomorrow Night, Party like its Purim with Vagabond Opera ?

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Purim Party ? 10 pm ? Fri Apr 4 ? Reed College, Student Union Building, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd

World-class Klezmer-punk band Vagabond Opera ? Plentiful food and drinks ?

Megilla reading ? Costume contest ? (1st prize = $40 gift cert to Powell's Books) ?

* Free for Students ($10 for non students)

Come to the Purim Party this Friday at 10 pm in the (SU) Reed College, Student Union Building, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd. featuring Vagabond Opera!

Purim is the Jewish version of Halloween in that you masquerade, but there is no soliciting of candy from strangers and instead the custom to get so hammered that you "can't tell your enemies from your friends." Really -- orthodox rabbis in Israel stopped my friend to force libations upon him because he apparently wasn't drunk enough.


Experts doubt the historical veracity of the events depicted in the book of Esther, but whatev. The Persian King (~475 BCE) had an evil advisor Haman who wanted to wipe out the Jewish people once Mordechai, a Jew, wouldn't bow down to him... But then, Esther, Mordechai's cousin who had just become the King's new fave wife, convinced the King to decree otherwise, and in a turn of events, Haman is the one who gets done in. Since Haman's plans get turned completely upside-down, one of Purim's themes is "nothing is as it seems" and thus people dress up and get 'so drunk they confuse enemies for friends' as noted above.

Other customs and stuff

Other things you do on Purim include eating hamantashen (special Purim cookies), giving to charity, giving food to friends, and blowing groggers (noisemakers) whenever Haman's name is mentioned during the Megilla reading (skit / re-enactment of the Purim story).

So come rock out to the world-class Klezmer-punk band Vagabond Opera (check: vagabondopera.com ? band member Leslie also plays sax for March Fourth), eat hamantashen and homemade challah (just cus I think it's delicious and love baking & sharing it), and dress up to win a $40 gift certificate to Powell's Bookstore?first prize for best costume.


Jewish Student Union and Chaverim
For more questions and additional information contact: jstu@pdx.edu or chaverim@lists.reed.edu

A Note from Sarah: The Organizers were excited about inviting the Urban Jews PDX list to this party, if you are not a student don't sweat it.

Darfur - What Can We Do?
this Saturday night!
Saturday, April 5 at 8:00 p.m.
Portland's First United Methodist Church
1838 SW Jefferson St

As part of Genocide Awareness Month, John Prendergast, co-chair of ENOUGH and former Assistant Secretary of State for Africa, will speak.

John Prendergast, has travelled to the camps with the likes of Don Cheadle (of Hotel Rwanda) Elie Wiesel, and prominent politicians. His recent book, co-authored by Don Cheadle, called "Not on Our Watch" is a blueprint for anti genocide activism. John Prendergast is currently the co-chair of ENOUGH (www.enoughproject.org).
The goal of ENOUGH is to advocate for the abolishment of genocide and mass atrocities. The goal in bringing John to Oregon is to help us advocate for and educate about Darfur and an end to genocide in a more cohesive and comprehensive way. Join us and learn more about what you can do

A Private Conversation with Rabbi Joseph Telushkin For Young Adults

You are invited to a private conversation with one of the most distinguished Jewish scholars of our time April 6 @ Shaarie Torah

Main Discussion on the struggle for Jewish Unity: 7:30pm (free for 18-39 year olds)

9pm: Private Q&A for 18-39 year olds

Strictly kosher snacks and other refreshments will be provided during the private session. Beer and wine available for those over 21 years of age.

Rabbi Telushkin has been named by Talk Magazine as ONE OF THE 50 BEST speakers in the United States.

Hi books include Jewish Literacy, the most widely selling book on Judaism of the past two decades.

Congregation Shaarie Torah | 920 N.W. 25th Avenue | Portland, OR 97210

Event Co-Sponsored By

The Moishe House | Urban Jews PDX | Machar | Hinenu | Portland Jewish Federation | Kayam | Portland Jewish Events

For more information contact Jeremy Rogers at jeremyscottrogers@gmail.com or 503-484-8678. RSVP helpful but not required.

The event made possible with the support Aspen Mitzvah, the Ungerleider Family Fund, the Oregon Jewish Community Foundation and Congregation Shaarie Torah

Women's Rosh Hodesh Group!

Join us for a discussion of Women in Exodus with Hannah Greer. Rosh Hodesh Nissan is this coming Sunday, April 6. The idea is to meet up, get coffee or a drink at 6pm in NW Portland and then many of us will go over to Shaarie Torah for the free Telushkin lecture together, but it is great to come to the discussion even if you can't make it to Telushkin.

So 6 pm on Sunday, April 6 at World Cup Coffee
(we really want to start at 6)
1740 NW Glisan St

From there many of us willl go to Shaarie Torah in time for the 7:30 lecture

Film Festival at Laurelhurst Theater
Next Weekend

Please mark your calendars, and invite your friends. "Three Short Films" by Israeli film students at Hadassah College Jerusalem. All previewed -- each one is great. We'll even have an Ud, an ancient Middle Eastern musical instrument that is the theme of one of the films, to view up close...it's owner has even offered to play it.

And our moderator, award-winning Professor Robert Liebman (who also happens to be my dad), teaches film classes in the Sociology and Judaic Studies Departments at PSU.

We are co-sponsoring this event with Hadassah - men and women 21 and up are welcome!

Sunday, April 13th
Laurelhurst Theater & Pub
E. Burnside and 28th
12:30pm, doors open at 12pm
Must be 21 and over

Tickets: $5
Food will be available for purchase.

Co-sponsors: Hadassah & Urban Jews

Let me know if you have any questions.
Feel free to forward this message to those you feel will be interested in the films.

Three Short Films

Directed by: Israeli Film Students at Hadassah College Jerusalem

Guest Moderator: Professor Robert Liebman, PSU Sociology

Presented by: Hadassah & Urban Jews

Sunday April 13th

12:30pm, doors open at 12pm

Cost: $5, Concession available (pizza, beer & etc.)

Since Alcohol is available, must be over 21 years old

Laurelhurst Theater & Pub

2735 E. Burnside St, Portland OR 97214

E. Burnside & 28th, Parking: on-street and in adjacent lot

A Dream of Mother: Director - Chava Schein

The film follows Dasesh's story. Dasesh is a 19-year-old Ethiopian girl living in Israel with her father and stepmother. For five years she has been dreaming of the arrival of her biological mother from Ethiopia. We join her as she anticipates the reunion and finally gets to embrace her mother again. The intensely emotional reunion finally takes place at Ben Gurion airport in Israel. However, after her dream is realized, great difficulties await the relationship. The time lapsed and the cultural gaps stand as obstacles between the two. Finally, the cold feelings between Dasesh and her mother convince her to return to the home of her father and stepmother and look for a new dream. Documentary 2000 - 27 minutes

Nitzan: Director - Oded Raz

Nitzan, an independent, lively and very mixed up 26 years old, awaits the discharge of her boyfriend, Yariv from the army. He is the one stable thing in her life. Yariv dreamt of a life together with Nitzan in greener pastures, however, a very promising job offer from the army together with his fear of changes keeps him in the army. A telephone call that wakes Nitzan in the middle of the night changes her life and she faces a new reality, with a diagnosis of breast cancer. Can she keep living her life the way she did until now? 2003 Fiction - 32 minutes

Ud: Director - Uri Shapira

An Israeli music band of three musicians are driving together to a concert in the Jordan Valley at the beginning of "El Aksa" riots. The driver decides to take a different route and they find themselves in the West Bank. Meanwhile a Palestinian family is trying to find a solution between the mental pain of the small child, Sami, the anger of an older child, Halil who was detained at an Israeli roadblock and the clemency of the father, Ibrahim. As a result of a shooting event, the musicians find themselves in this Palestinian family's house. Between the Jewish members there is a conflict - should they wait in the house or should they call the police. Yaki, the drummer wants to get out of the house as his friends George and Rami want to wait in the house. The situation becomes even tenser when members of the Arab village begin to gather around the house and demand to lynch the Jews. Sami, the young child, and George the Ud player, find a way to link the two sides together, where words seem to fail and music becomes a solution. The film was supported by the "Mifal Hapais" fund for young creators and The Miki Albin Fund (2nd award at the script contest 1/05/02). 2003 Fiction - 18 minutes.





Passover begins April 19. So now is a good time to think about it if you want to attend a community seder or plan your own seder with friends. Either way we have information for you!

Do It Yourself Passover

In every generation we must imagine we each came out of Egyptian slavery. How will you make the Passover story yours?

The seder is a meal where we use rituals, stories, songs, and ceremonial foods to recount the exodus from Egypt. There is no set liturgy for the seder and so there are many versions. Here are some resources for creating your version. It is surprisingly easy and really makes it meaningful. I've included information about Jewish freeware to make your own hagaddah and links to the webpages for most of the Jewish movements. I suggest that you take something from all of them. And there are recipes, explanations of rituals, glossaries, songs, etc.

Historically, many Jews have used the seder as an opportunity to discuss social justice issues since we remember when we were enslaved and since we are obligated on Passover in particular to feed the hungry and so on. Seders in the past have discussed the plight of Ethiopian and Soviet Jewry. Today many people incorporate Darfur into their seders. I have included some links with resources for this.

Make your own hagaddah (passover service book) using Jewish freeware!


Vegetarian and Vegan Passover recipes:


Darfur Seder Resources:


From the Reform movement - includes social action material, ideas, explanations, and recipes


From the conservative movement - Some really terrific material here on creating your own hagadah and traditions:


The Orthodox Union's site offers a variety of information with a focus on kashrut issues:


Not sure about God but want to have a seder? Check out this seder from a Humanistic perspective:


Chabad resources on seder rituals, hagadot, recipes, and finding a chabad community seder:


The reconstructionist movement didn't have seder resources on their website that I could find. And I struck out with renewal too. I have heard about a JewBu (Jewish Buddhist) hagaddah but I wasn't able to find it online. You could try poking around since it looked like individuals and congregations had posted some materials, just not the movements as a whole.

Stuck? Overwhelmed by options? Email me and I'll try to help you find your path in the diversity that is Jewish life.

Community Passover Seder Options

Want to celebrate passover in community? Here is a list of Community Seders in Portland, Oregon and Vancouver/SW Washington listed loosely from most liberal to most traditional. I would encourage you to call or email soon since sometimes seders can fill up.

American Jewish Committee 9th annual Inter-Group Passover Seder

The AJC does a variety of social justice and interfaith dialogue work locally and around the world. They have been extremely active to help Darfur.

Sunday, April 13 at 5:30 PM

Congregation Beth Israel

1972 NW Flanders

Dinner and ceremonial foods will be served.

The seder will be led by Rabbi Michael Cahana and Cantor Judith Schiff

Reservations are required, please reply by April 9

Call 503-295-6761 or email portland@ajc.org to reserve.

Recommended donation $10 per person

Kol Ami in Vancouver

Sunday, April 20, 6:00 p.m. (2nd night of Passover)

First Congregational Church (1220 NE 68th Street, Vancouver)

CKA's semi-annual food drive runs from April 4?20. Bring your nonperishable items to the Seder or to any activities at the Learning Center any time KALC is open! This year the food drive is coordinated by MIB (the Mitzvah Intelligence Bunch). Thanks middle schoolers!

Member ($22.25) Non-member ($32.00) Member Child ($10.50) Non-member Child ($15.50) Child care ($4)

CKA Seder 5768. Reservation deadline is April 11. Check the box that applies for each attendee.

(Note: all prices include 3% to Mazon: the Jewish Response to Hunger.)

Reservation deadline is April 11

(After April 16: no refunds for cancellations.)

Make your check payable to "Congregation Kol Ami Seder"

Mail reservation form and payment to:

Kol Ami Learning Center

1006-B NE 146th Street, Vancouver, WA 98665

Contact Lauren (lauren@jewishvancouverusa.com or 896-8088) with any questions or financial issues.


Saturday Night, April 26, 6 pm
Gesher is hosting a Passover Seder specifically for Unaffiliated Young Jews.
Rabbi Laurie Rutenberg and Rabbi Gary Schoenberg are inviting Young Adults
and College Students to their home for a Seder on Saturday night, April 26, at 6 pm, which
is the last night of Pesach. The seder will take place in two parts: one, in the theatrical
setting of an oasis on the shores of the Red Sea, where , in the context of the traditional telling of our people's story of enslavement and longing for freedom, we will explore our own searches for meaning and purpose in this world. Part two will be a delicious kosher for Passover feast - an indoor "banquet of freedom."
The setting is informal and very friendly. Please bring a picnic blanket and pillow to sit on, to help
create a comfortable tent floor.
Gesher?A Bridge Home is at 10701 SW 25th Avenue in Portland.
Suggested contribution is $18 - $25. No one is turned away for inability to contribute.
Please RSVP to Rabbi Laurie or Rabbi Gary at 503 246-5070.

In addition to this seder which is especially for young adults, Gesher will be hosting three other seders that may be of interest:

Friday night, April 25, at 6 pm, Gesher is hosting a Passover Seder for Singles and Couples. The seder will be similar, but the people there will range mostly from ages 30 - 50.

If you are wanting to be at a seder on the first or second nights of Passover,
Gesher welcomes young adults to its Community Seder on the second night of Passover,
Sunday, April 20, at 5 pm. This seder is open to everyone, but mostly will have adults and
high school students.

A Women's and Girls' Seder, on Sunday, April 27, at 4 pm. Celebrate Jewish women's experience,
explore stories about the courageous Jewish women who helped their people out of Egypt,
discuss today's Jewish women's issues, and general women's issues in the light of a
Jewish feminist consciousness.

Each one of these seders includes a delicious kosher for Passover feast. Suggested donation for
young adults for these seders is $15 - $25. No one is turned away for inability to pay. Please RSVP for all Gesher seders - 503 246-5070.

Volunteer opportunity: Gesher would be greatly appreciative of help before Passover begins, especially on Sunday, April 13, doing the physical labor of making Gesher kosher for Passover, as well as the artistic work of decorating Gesher's Passover tent. Call Rabbi Laurie for details. 503 246-5070

Kol Shalom Community for Humanistic Judaism *THE HUMAN COURAGE TO BE FREE*

Kol Shalom Community for Humanistic Judaism invites you to join us for a joyful Seder, with a humanistic translation of traditional elements for modern relevance.

Complete with Matzo Ball Soup

Vegetarian option available

*SUNDAY, APRIL 20, 2007*

*3:30 PM *

The social hour begins at 3:30, and wine will be available at a no-host bar.

The service begins at 4:30.






(For Member prices, please see the Seder Registration Form included in your April newsletter.)


Please call the Kol Shalom Community for Humanistic Judaism office for reservations or more information: 503-459-4210 Or email: info@kolshalom.org

Passages to Freedom '08 - A Seder for Women:


Neveh Shalom

Here is the link for the Neveh Shalom Seder community seder led by Rabbi Bradley and Sarah Greenstein.


Keshet Seder for LGBT Jews and their families and friends



Enjoy an in-depth Hebrew/English Passover seder with plenty of tradition, translation, and an abundance of entertaining commentary. A delicious dinner with all the traditional foods will be served.

Portland Westside April 19 and 20 at 8:00 PM
Adults: $36, Children: $25
7106 SW 12th Ave
Reserve at www.ChabadOregon.com

Portland Eastside April 20 at 8:30 PM
Adults: $36, Children: $25
5130 SE 30th Avenue Unit 10
Reserve at www.ChabadatPortlandCampuses.org

Vancouver April 19 at 8:30 PM
Adults: $25, Children: $15
9604 NE 126th Ave. Suite 2320
Reserve at www.ChabadClarkCounty.com

For college students only (FREE!):
Chabad on Portland Campuses April 19 at 8:30 PM
5130 SE 30th Avenue Unit 10, Portland
Reserve (Drop Ins Welcome!) at www.ChabadatPortlandCampuses.org
It is Chabad of Oregon's policy to never turn anyone away due to lack of funds.

Most of these Seders list a price because offering a seder is expensive. No one is making money off these seders, instead the fees go toward food, materials, etc. But if you really can't pay, contact the person organizing the seder. If that doesn't work, either go to Gesher or Chabad who won't turn anyone away because of inability to pay or let me know and I'll see what I can figure out.

Confused? Overwhelmed? Send me an email and I'll try to help you find a place where you feel comfortable. Really, don't hesitate.



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