Celebrating Ourselves: B’nai Sholom’s 40th Anniversary Shabbaton

Saturday, November 3, 2012

 RIC 4595r300


Early morning programs, 9:30 – 10:30

Torah Study

Torah Study has been a mainstay at B’nai Sholom for many years. The group meets on Saturday mornings from 9:30–11:00 a.m. at B’nai Sholom to read and discuss the week’s parashat.IMG 1615-1r360

(Ordinarily the first Saturday of each month is Extended Text Study, which features text outside of the Torah – currently the prophets. Extended Text Study runs from 9:30 – noon, is led by Rabbi Cashman, and includes coffee, bagels and other breakfast goodies. However, for this special Shabbaton, Torah Study will be only one hour and will focus on the week’s parashat – Vayera.)

Sonny Hausgaard cr200Torah study is open to all. Feel free to come regularly or just whenever you can make it.

Sonny Hausgaard will serve as informal facilitator for Torah Study for this Shabbaton. He is an economist retired from the NYS Department of Public Service. He and wife Anne have been members of BSRC for 32 years and both have served as board members. They live in Voorheesville. They have four grown children and eight grandchildren.

Create a “Shabbat Box”

During this craft activity, families will work together to design a challah cover, create candle holders, decorate a Kiddush cup, and compose a family prayer to usher in Shabbat and separate it from the rest of the week. They will also decorate a recycled box that can be used to hold some or all of these items or to store Shabbat candles. Suitable for young children if accompanied by a RIC 4101er360parent; fun for all ages.

 Liz Gingrich r150
Liz Gingrich teaches elementary school in the Guilderland School district. She enjoys running, fiddling, cooking, reading, and making jewelry. A 20-year member of B’nai Sholom, Liz has served on the board, taught religious school, and been a lead organizer of High Holiday Youth Services and Kids Congregation. Liz has chanted Torah several times since she celebrated as an adult bat mitzvah at B’nai Sholom. Liz is married to Lorn Gingrich and lives in Guilderland. They are the parents of Devon and Rachel.

Drama, Movement and Relaxation

This warm-up to the day will help loosen up joints, brain cells, and creative juices.  Participants will prepare for the Shabbaton through imagery, stretching to music, theater games and – yes – Mad Libs.  BYOI (bring your own imaginations). Children under 12 should be accompanied by a parent.

 Melissa Putterman Hoffmann cr95Melissa Putterman Hoffmann and her husband Gary met doing community theater almost 24 years ago and were married by Rabbi Cashman 2 years later.  Melissa has directed and acted in many productions for Schenectady Light Opera Company and Schenectady Civic Playhouse, where she recently appeared as Mme Arcati in “Blithe Spirit.” She will soon be appearing as Zorah Bloch in Our Own Productions’ “Inspecting Carol.”  For her “day job,” Melissa is the district social worker for Berlin Central Schools. She has led tefillah on Sunday mornings for the religious school for several years, has been actively involved in High Holiday Youth Services and serves on the Religious School Committee.   Melissa and Gary are the parents of Nathan and Jillian and live in Niskayuna.

 Shabbat Morning Service, 10:30-12:00

Would your child benefit from babysitting or an alternate activity for young children during the service? If so, please e-mail Libby Liebschutz and Carol Smith, at libbyliebschutz@gmail.com and csmith1161@gmail.com as soon as possible! Or call Libby at 439-5089 or Carol at 482-6081.

DPC Photo by BAM Rabbi Cashman cr95Rabbi Don Cashman has been the spiritual leader of B’nai Sholom since 1985. He is a graduate of Boston University and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and was ordained in 1983. In 2008 he received from HUC-JIR the degree of Doctor of Divinity (honoris causa) in recognition of his commitment, dedication, and service to the Reform Movement, Judaism, and the Jewish People.

Rabbi Cashman remains involved in the world of Jewish choral and contemporary synagogue music. In recent years he has sung from time to time with the Ne’imah Jewish Community Chorus of Albany, and eleven times has been a participant in the North American Jewish Choral Festival. As he will for this service, the rabbi often provides the music for congregational worship, usually accompanying himself on the guitar.

Since 1984 he has been married to Sharona Wachs, Associate Librarian at the University at Albany, and Affiliated Faculty with the Department of Judaic Studies.   They reside in Albany, where Rabbi Cashman delights in attending to his vegetable garden, chiefly tomatoes and chili peppers. Their three children –Avraham, Eliana, and Ayelet – live in the Boston area.

Terry Kindlon cr100Terry Kindlon has practiced as a criminal defense lawyer Albany for 35 years. He began his career as an assistant public defender and entered private practice in the late 1970’s. Over the years Terry has defended many people charged with serious crimes, including a number of men facing the death penalty in both state and federal court. One of the founding members of the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Terry has served as a lecturer for that group as well as for the Criminal Justice Section of the New York State Bar Association. He and wife Laurie Shanks are partners in Kindlon Shanks & Associates.

During the War in Vietnam Terry served in the United States Marine Corps. A sergeant, he was awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. Terry flies a twin-engine Cessna and is an active volunteer pilot with Angelflight Northeast.

Laurie Shanks cr100Laurie Shanks is a Clinical Professor of Law at Albany Law School where she teaches client counseling and trial practice courses. Laurie has been a prosecutor, a public defender, and a partner in a private law firms. She has served on Judge Kaye’s Task Force on the Future of Indigent Defense and the New York State Bar Task Force on Wrongful Convictions. Laurie met Terry at a National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys conference in Austin, Texas in 1988, fell in love, married and moved from Phoenix, Arizona to Albany, New York in January of 1989. She married into five children, had two more – Jake and Ben, who grew up at BSRC, and she and Terry are now the proud grandparents of nine grandchildren. They live in Glenmont.

Potluck Lunch – 12:15

To register and sign up to bring something, contact Linda Strohl at 785-3772 or lstrohl3772@gmail.com37

General guidelines for BSRC meals:

  • Please bring your own dishes, glasses, cutlery and napkins.
  • Please bring your own beverages if you want something other than water.  
  • Please no pork or shellfish.
  • Please do not mix milk and meat in the same dish. The buffet table will generally be set up with dairy at one end, meat at the other, and parve dishes in the middle – please make sure your dish ends up in the right category.

Sign up early to avoid being closed out – space is limited!

Afternoon workshops:

 Session 1: 1:30 – 2:30

 Disability Etiquette: What to Do and Say When you Meet People with Disabilities,

 Have you ever had that panicky moment when you encounter someone with a disability and you are not sure what to say? Or what to do? Take a self-assessment quiz (for your eyes only) and participate in a lively discussion about how to interact with people with disabilities with respect for differences.

 Barbara Devore cr100Barbara Devore has advocated on behalf of people with disabilities (including herself) since she was able to talk. The holder of a master’s degree in public administration, she has spent most of her professional life administering programs that address the health and independence of disenfranchised people. Barbara has served in a wide variety of board and committee posts at B’nai Sholom and has taught religious school for many years; currently she co-chairs the Hospitality Committee and teaches 8th grade in religious school.IMG 1744 8r360 She and her husband Jack live in Glenmont and are the parents of Eric.

 Rich Strohl r95Rich Strohl is a master’s level social worker and has been employed in the human service field for over 35 years. For the last 30 years he has been involved in improving the lives and independence of people with disabilities. His primary focus has been developing programs for people with disabilities to become employed in careers that meet their personal goals and abilities. Rich and his wife Linda are the parents of Ellie and Rachel. They live in Loudonville.

Mah Jong for Beginners

Ever wanted to learn the Chinese tile22 game of Mah Jong? This is a wonderful opportunity to sit in on a game and learn from experienced players from our congregation.

B’nai Sholom’s Mah Jong group welcomes beginners as well as experienced players. Although the group started at BSRC, it has opened up to include non-BSRC members as well. They play generally twice each month, on the first and third Tuesday, and rotate playing at different people’s homes.

Food Politics: Where Do You Fit In? – Sustainable Food Systems, Your Choices, and Their Implications

Come prepared to 45
participate in a conversation on hot topics surrounding food, farming, and the choices we make. Is it better to eat local or organic than to buy food from a large supermarket? What impact do your food choices have on your own health, on public health, and on the world at large?

Amy Koren-Roth r95Amy Koren-Roth is a registered dietician and a public health nutritionist with the N.Y.S. Department of Health, where she directs the Nutrition Policy and Health Promotion Unit. She works on obesity prevention, school nutrition and community health promotion through programs such as “Eat Well Play Hard.” Amy received her master’s degree in community nutrition from NYU. She is a past president of BSRC and was a founder of its art committee. She and husband Yossi are the parents of Hadar and Adam. They live in Delmar.

Session 2: 2:35-3:35

Tzaddik Katamar and More: Dance to Rhythms of the World

 Joan and Jim Savitt cr95This workshop promises an assortment of dances that anyone can learn and that feature lots of interesting rhythms.IMG 1890 1r360

Joan Savitt has taught dance for more than 20 years. Currently, she teaches folk dance for the University at Albany Department of Theatre. She has also taught and the Dance Flurry, the New England Folk Festival, National Museum of Dance in Saratoga Springs and locally at synagogues throughout the Capital Region. Her husband, Jim (an economist and avid Red Cross volunteer) partners with Joan at these events, and has coined the couple’s slogan, “We speak with one voice.” Parents of Marshall, they live in Albany.

Marriage Equality

 This workshop will explore what the American legal system has to say about gay marriage and how it contrasts with our Jewish tradition, both ancient and modern.

 Dave Liebschutz r95David Liebschutz is a Public Service Professor at the University at Albany’s Rockefeller College of Public Affairs, where he teaches a graduate seminar in law and public policy.  He formerly served as Director of Strategic Planning and Analysis at the Center for Governmental Research (CGR). 48 Prior to joining CGR, David spent five years as assistant dean for career and alumni programs at Rockefeller College and four years as the Executive Director of the University at Albany Hillel.  A former BSRC president, he has been active on a number of BSRC committees through the years. He and his wife Libby live in Delmar and are the parents of Jennifer and Rebecca.

Julie novkov r95 Julie Novkov is a Professor of Political Science and Women’s Studies at the University at Albany, SUNY, where she is the chair of the Department of Political Science within Rockefeller College. She came here in 2006 after spending ten years on the faculty at the University of Oregon. Her research and teaching address the intersection of law, history, US political development, and identity, such as race and gender. Julie is the author of numerous scholarly books and articles. Julie and her husband, Joel Bloom, are the parents of Asher, Shira and Zachary, current students in BSRC’s religious school. They live in Loudonville.

 Backyard Beekeeping

 Come hear about Mitch’s experiences with beekeeping. bee Keeping er200The dynamics of the beehive are fascinating and over the 5+ years Mitch has been keeping bees, he has amassed a wealth of knowledge and observations about these dynamics. Mitch is also more than happy to offer some how-to information if you’re interested in getting started keeping bees yourself.

mitch LevinnMitch Levinn lives with his wife Doris at Hoags Corners in Nassau, where they reared their children Ben, Sandy and Carrie. A graduate of RPI, Mitch is an Electrical Engineer specializing in embedded design and custom controllers.  He is also the mayor of the Village of East Nassau, the chief of the Hoags Corners Volunteer Ambulance Association, the chair of the Digital TowPath Cooperative (an intermunicipal local government agency), and has been a firefighter for 25 years.  He is a former president of BSRC and is currently a stalwart of the house and technology committees.

Session 3: 3:40 – 4:40

Why Do Terrorist Organizations Target the U.S?

Hating America — and killing Americans — at times seems like a mandatory activity for terrorist organizations, yet only a small minority of identified organizations actually select American targets for attack.  Under what circumstances do terrorist organizations choose to target American citizens and interests?  This talk focuses on this question looking cross nationally at a variety of terrorist organizations and their behaviors. 

Karl Rethemeyer cr95Karl Rethemeyer is Associate Professor of Public Administration and Policy, Chair of the Department of Public Administration and Policy, and Associate Dean of the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany – SUNY. Karl’s primary research interest is in social networks, their impact on social, political, and policy processes, and the methods used to study such networks. He is a graduate of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Karl is married to BSRC president Jodi Kerper; their son Ben is a student in BSRC’s religious school. They reside in Delmar.

Victor Asai cr95Victor Asal is Director of the Center for Policy Research and an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University at Albany’s Rockefeller College. He is also the director of the Homeland Security Certificate and MPA Concentration in the Department of Public Administration and Policy. He received his PhD from the University of Maryland, College Park. Victor, his wife Barbara, and their two sons Gilad and Nadav live in Albany.

Shabbat Observance: Modern Ambivalence

Judith Shulevitz’s 2010 book, The Sabbath World:  Glimpses of a Different Order of Time, is a wonderful exploration of the history and practices, exacting rituals, and literary representations and metaphors associated with the sabbath throughout the ages.  She acknowledges that “I like the idea of the fully observed Sabbath more than I like observing it,” and then articulates a very modern ambivalence, one which most of us may well share, about this central tenet of Jewish life.  This seminar will focus on short excerpts from the book as a basis for discussion of Shabbat practice and attitudes toward it.

Martha Rozett r95Martha Rozett is a professor of English at U. Albany with an affiliate appointment in Judaic Studies. A Shakespeare scholar who has written extensively and taught about Shakespeare, Martha also teaches contemporary historical fiction, including fiction on the history of the Jews. Her most recent work is When People Wrote Letters: A Family Chronicle, a story told through family letters and autobiographies about the travels and careers of her mother and great aunt and about a romance threatened by the differences between New England Episcopalians and New York Jews. She has been actively involved as a committee and board member at B’nai Sholom. Martha and her husband John live in Albany and are the parents of Josh and Alex.

Adjusting Your Gardening Practices to Climate Change

An up-to-date account of what to expect from climate change, how it will affect weather and the natural world, and how to adapt your garden choices and practices to these changes. This workshop will include xeriscaping, water-wise practices, zone creep, and migration.

Marty Teumin cr95Marty Teumim is a retired English teacher who works part-time for an educational software company. Marty has been a Master Gardener Volunteer with Albany County since 1982. She was one of the first co-principals of BSRC’s religious school and has held a variety of committee positions. She and husband Phil are the parents of Rachel and Sunny; they live in Delmar.

B'nai Sholom Albany NY