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A Reform Synagogue that Honors Tradition
June/July/August 2018 • Sivan/Tammuz/Av/Elul 5778 
Volume 80.09
Beth Shalom Stained Glass
 
 

Rabbi's Message

As this BSS bulletin hits your inboxes, some members of our synagogue will be in Israel traveling through Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. Of course, back here on the home-front in Baton Rouge, normal programming continues, thus reflecting the dual nature of Jewish identity in the Diaspora and Israel. We hope and pray for tranquility in Israel after the recent upheaval this past month. 
Please make sure to follow the trip’s progress on our BSS Facebook page which we will update with blog entries frequently. Whether you are well-versed in Israel or a novice, I hope you can derive some meaning and enjoyment from following us remotely. A special thanks to David and Kim Deitch for donating pocket prayer cards with the beautiful t'filat ha’derech/the ancient traveler’s prayer. We will use these often as we travel throughout Israel, and back home to the US, as we ask for God’s protection. As you travel near or far from your homes this Summer, I invite you to say those beautiful words as well.  
 
Summer is a time of excitement, possibilities, and also, a time of rest. We especially feel this sense of rest on our Jewish calendar as we take a much-needed breath before we begin to ramp up for the High Holy Days. As they come early this year, excitement will already begin to build in the later part of the Summer. We just confirmed our cantor for these immensely important days, and I know everyone will be pleased with her beautiful voice, comforting presence, and great wisdom. She is an ordained rabbi, a friend of mine, and it will be an honor to share the bima with her. Not to mention, I mark my 40th birthday with y’all on the joyous (!) evening of Kol Nidre. So yes, there is a lot to be excited for these coming months!
 
Summer is also a great time to consider a new skill in your own pursuit of enrichment and community engagement. Perhaps you want to learn or brush up on your Hebrew skills? Learn how to chant Torah, or help lead Services? Whether myself or one of our dedicated lay leaders, we would love to help you learn, lead, and grow.  
 
Our small, yet venerable synagogue is approaching its 75th anniversary. I think about the inscription we often see above many sanctuary arks: “Know Before Whom You Stand.” This Talmudic phrase is a call for both introspection and action, for humility and for peace. As we inch our way towards this auspicious moment in our shul’s history, we remind ourselves not only before whom we stand, but also upon whose shoulders we stand. 
 
How can we best honor those that came before us, those who provided us with the strong community that we enjoy today? I hope that you will consider this question as you enjoy a summer of relaxation and renewal. I wish you all blessings for peace and wholeness during these hot summer months. Never hesitate to reach out to me for anything, and I hope to see you during one of our parlor classes this Summer, at Shabbat Services, and beyond! 
 
 

Board Message

In case you have not heard, we now have an active book club at Beth Shalom Synagogue. I just wanted to share what a great opportunity it can be to enjoy reading critically acclaimed books with fascinating Jewish themes. You could join any number of book clubs, but this group is special as we have the opportunity to meet other congregants and engage in interesting discussions full of personal insights and experiences, discussing what-ifs and deeper meanings. What a great opportunity to build common ground with other congregants!
 
One of my personal goals is to read more. That is why I joined the book club, because it would entice me to read books that I would enjoy and get the opportunity to discuss it. One of the unexpected benefits is meeting fellow congregants and getting to know them better. The reason I am sharing this is to encourage all members to consider joining the book club. It is not too late and it is definitely worth your time. Additionally, you may just find a book that will provide you with a really good summer read while you are on vacation or just hanging by the pool.
 
So far, we had one organizational meeting earlier this year coordinated by Galia Betech. At this meeting, the group reviewed a detailed list of potential books and then the participants selected books that piqued their interest. Our first book took place in Prague as WWII began, The Lost Wife. It turned out to be a wonderful love story of a couple who was married and then were separated their entire lives, assuming the other had perished during the war. I won’t spoil the ending, but it was a great story. Our gathering last month lasted one hour and was filled with great discussion. We have selected 4 books with plans to meet every other month to discuss.
 
Even if you don’t get to read the book, you are welcome to join the meetings and listen to the discussion. It might even entice you to read the book afterward. The next get together is June 9 after services at 12:30pm. In addition, we are scheduled to meet on July 14 and August 25. On June 9, we are discussing The Waiting Room by Leah Kaminsky, a story that unfolds over a day in the life of a young physician in contemporary Israel, who must cope with modern threats in the shadow of her parents’ horrific wartime pasts. Bridget Feldbaum will be leading our discussion and it is sure to be a good one!
 
We hope to see you there.
 
Phil Goldfeder
 
 

Brotherhood

The Brotherhood is pretty much off for the summer, although there are a few projects which need to be done, such as finish pressure washing the Synagogue building, which was begun at the last workday, and also an outdoor classroom for the Rayner Center. No date for the next workday has been set as of this column.
 
Since the summer is fast approaching, a light topic is in order. I am probably not the only one who notices the Synagogue is sort of a place of refuge from troubles one might be experiencing at a particular time. This seems to be because the Synagogue is tranquil, whether it be Shabbat, holidays, High Holiday services, potluck dinners, and even Brotherhood workdays. The only time things get a little hectic is during the corned beef sandwich sale, but even then it is still relatively tranquil. Perhaps this also why the room where we hold services is called a sanctuary. This is as it should be.
 
Have a relaxing summer!
 
Gary Baum
 
 

Rayner Center

May was a busy and bittersweet month at Rayner. We enjoyed a Family Picnic and Teacher Appreciation Week. Many generous families donated time and gifts to show our teachers how valued they are. The teachers enjoyed chair massages and a fiesta-themed luncheon!
 
We also celebrated our Pre-K class at their Moving On Ceremony. It is always sad to see our Rayner kids go, even though we know they are well-prepared for future success in Kindergarten and beyond.
 
This summer we will enjoy a Rainforest themed curriculum with many exciting activities, including the ever-popular Water Play Days. We will also begin to enjoy our new ExploreYard outdoor classroom! Volunteers are needed for our Phase One Building Day on June 3rd. Please let Bridget Connor-Feldbaum know if you are able to assist or would like to make a donation to the ExploreYard fund.
 
Our longtime Director Dottie Smith will be retiring at the end of July. We are planning to honor her many years of service with a special Shabbat service on Friday, August 3rd. Please plan to join us, and contact Nick May or Rabbi Natan if you are able to assist in our efforts to make this a wonderful celebration.
 
Todah Rabbah!
Rabbi Natan
Steven Winkler
Cathy Melanson
Mark Posner
Nick May
Rayner Learning Center Council
 
 

Hadassah

Greetings from Hadassah Baton Rouge
 
A small but mighty group attended our Pushkah/Game Day event. The children in
attendance got to create some mini-masterpieces under the guidance of event
coordinator Liz Clubb. The adults enjoyed good talk and some intellectually
stimulating game playing. Thanks to Liz and all who attended.
 
Our next book discussion will be held Wednesday, May 23 at 7:00 p.m. at the
Goodwood Branch-Main Library. We will talk about Nathan Englander’s new book
“Dinner at the Center of the Earth”. It’s a fictional thriller that uses the Israeli-Palestinian dispute as its point of reference. Next up will be “The Immortalists” by Chloe Benjamin.
 
Our “Hadassah Celebrates Israel 70” event will take place on June 10, 2018 at
6:30 p.m. at B’nai Israel synagogue. We’re going to talk about modern, tech savvy Israel, eat delicious Mid Eastern cuisine, hear from recent Israel travelers and cap the evening off with Israeli folk dancing led by David Kirschner. A donation of $18.00 is suggested. Please plan to attend and RSVP to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
 
Thank you for all you do for Hadassah.
 
Hadassah Baton Rouge
 
 

BaRFTY

The 2017-2018 year was a good year with great people on board. 2018-2019 will be even greater! Your new board members are: Maggie Mullenix and Julia Sager (Co-Presidents), Briana Mullenix (Programming), Abbe Kantrow (Social Action), Charlie Roth (Religious and Cultural), and Jora Deitch (Communications and Membership). This year’s board will try their hardest to make sure all of BaRFTY’s events are “sick,” and are always open to suggestions or ideas. In the past we’ve done some really cool and fun events that everyone enjoys such as, spaghetti dinners, auctions, end of the year pool parties and more! A super fun event that we have coming up is Summer Fest 8/31-9/4 in Utica, MS, so mark your calendars. We also have Dream Street and Jacobs Camp starting very soon. We want to encourage all high schoolers, even if you are a senior, we would love to have you at events. We would also like to encourage incoming 9th graders because it’s important to get involved as you enter high school. BaRFTY is part of a larger caring community and we want to share that with as many other Jewish kids as possible.
 
Beth Shalom in Pictures
 
Sunset selfie! 
Rayner students lead their parents in the Motzi.
Winding down the day with a glass of wine. 
Independence Hall in Tel Aviv. 
Singing with Mr. Nick at the Moving On Ceremony!
 
Announcements & Reminders
 
We welcome any and all to come and worship with us at Beth Shalom.
Oneg Shabbat
Would you like to host an Pre-oneg? If so, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for information and available dates.
Hospital Visits
We rely on you to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.?subject=Hospital%20visits">let us know when you, a family member, or friend are in the hospital or recuperating at home and would welcome a visit from Rabbi Natan.
May He who blessed our ancestors grant all who are ill a complete and speedy recovery.
 

 Within our Congregation

Mazel Tov... to Sara Winkler, daughter of Monica and Steven Winkler, and Dan Hurwitz on their engagement.
 
In Memoriam... for Sadie "Babe" Weintraub, mother of Donna Sternberg
Need a ride to services? 
Please call or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by Wednesday prior to the service that you would like to attend, and we will make arrangements for a ride to services.
Boomers + Jewish singles group
If you are a Jewish single over 45, you are invited to join our casual group for monthly coffee and conversation, synagogue and community service projects, and cultural activities. Please call Heidi Shapiro at 225-924-2597.
 
Donations
 
Thank you for your generous donations. Donations may be made to honor any occasion or remembrance. A full listing of all of our funds and a downloadable donation formare available on the Beth Shalom website. Donations via PayPal are also welcomed.
General Fund
In Honor of:
  • Dottie Smith's 3 decades of service to Rayner Center — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • Eliana Levy's graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Laurie & Dale Maas; Paula Hoffman
  • Rachel Posner's graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Laurie & Dale Maas; Paula Hoffman
  • Susannah Silverman's graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Laurie & Dale Maas; Paula Hoffman
  • Jeanne Ruth Wood's graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Laurie & Dale Maas
  • Erin Dean's graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Laurie & Dale Maas; Paula Hoffman
  • Benjamin Maas's graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Laurie & Dale Maas; Paula Hoffman
  • Annie Bauman's Vet School Graduation — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • Lucas & Bree's wedding — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • Sara Winkler & Dan Hurwitz's engagement — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Paula Hoffman
  • L'hitraot to Aliza Rudavsky, Danny Brent, & Izzy & all blessings in Pennsylvania — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • L'hitraot to Laurie & Phil Goldfeder & All blessings in Japan — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • Rabbi Natan for all his efforts for organizing BSS in Israel 5778 — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • Linda Posner's first of many times to chant Torah — Rachel & Mark Hausmann
  • Bridget Feldbaum for her exemplary service as Rayner Center's assistant director & for her new role as Rayner Center's Director — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
In Memory of:
  • Sadie "Babe" Weintraub — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Monica & Steven Winkler; Rachelle Hirsch; Paula Hoffman
  • Claire Schwartz, Heidi Shapiro's mother — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner; Paula Hoffman
  • Jose Shemaria, Galia Betech's grandfather — Rachel & Mark Hausmann; Linda & Mark Posner
  • My father, Abraham Roza — Miriam Bensman
  • Lena Langlois — Carin & John Carlson
  • Helen Gold Haymon — Ava & Cordell Haymon
  • My grandfather, Jacob Moscove — Carole Jasman
  • Marian Maas Broach — Myra Kay Broach
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
In Memory of:
  • Heidi Shapiro's mother, Claire Schwartz — Rhea & Raymond Schneider
 
Adult Education
 
This summer we will be beginning a parlor series at people's homes! Join us for an evening of Old Fashioned Judaism on Wednesday, June 20 at 7:30 pm. add to calendar
Join us for part two of our summer parlor series, Drinks and Drash, on Thursday, July 5 at 7:30 pm. add to calendar
The month of Elul is traditionally a time for personal reflection and spiritual preparation for the New Year. Join Rabbi Natan's two-part seminar - Elul Immersion - and learn more about the structured opportunity we are all given during the month of Elul to examine what is holding us back from being who we really want to be. Thursdays, August 2 add to calendarand 16 at 7 pm. add to calendar
 
Days to Remember
 
Please visit our online calendar for the most up-to-date information about events at Beth Shalom and in the wider Jewish community.
June Birthdays
 2 Joshua Stephenson   
 3 Alicia Kober
    Shiloh Schechter
 4 Diane Dean
 5 Ellen Greene
 9 Jennifer Moses
 8 Danny Brent
12 Silvia Dewitt
15 
Adin Brunner
17 Byron Howey
18 Leia Edwards
19 Joshua Bonadona  
22 Mark Posner
23 Brooke Beychok
25 Steve Cavalier
27 Sean Becnel
28 Joshua Burton
30 Michael Dreznick
June Anniversaries
 5 Elinor and Jack Goldberg
    Jennifer Moses and Stuart Green   
 9 Linda and Nate Brener
    Sara and Norman Silverman
​    Carol and Harold Wexler
11 Sandra Weitz and Alex Ingerman
     Ayan and Mike Rubin
     Lauren Aronson and Paul Orr
     Debbie and Steve Cavalier 
     Julie and Michael Cherry
15 Donna and Randy Goldich
     Jane and Howard Hershberg
     Michelle and Gus Levy
22 Rachel and Mark Hausmann
     Lillia and Zach Berkowitz
26 Laurie and Philip Goldfeder
July Anniversaries
 3 Cindy Levy and Terry Howey
 5 Robin and James Fletcher
    Rhea and Ray Schneider
 6 Laurie and Dale Maas
 9 Bridget and David Feldbaum
11 Monica and Steven Winkler
12 Mimi and Morris Bonadona
17 Julie Hoffman and Ara Rubyan
     Brenda and Louis Saltz
19 Liz Clubb and Mitch Rayner
25 Edna and Harold Silverman
July Birthdays
 1 Lillia Berkowitz  
 3 Julie Hoffman
    Jeff Smith
 4 Connie Finkelstein
    Jacob Hausmann
 5 Eliana Levy
    Celia Strickler
    Rachel Stephenson
 7 Louis Saltz
    Laurie Goldfeder
 9 Miriam Bensman
12 Kitty Wiessenberg
16 
Abigail Rayner
      Alice Meyer
21 Donald Austern
     Mitch Rayner
23 Patti Fox
24 Harold Wexler
25 Gail Sherman
     Hannah Yaun
30 Michael Carpenter
     Melanie Fields
August Birthdays
 1 Michael Beychok
    Samuel Green
 4 Ian Hollander
 6 James Fletcher
 7 Jenna Gant
 8 Mandy Dreznick
 9 Anton Feldbaum
10 Matthew Ceppos
11 David Kaplan
14 Jonathan Green
     Rose Green
15 Benjamin Maas
16 Gimmie Brownleader
     Sheila Horowitz
18 James Bullman
     Ari Piha-Paul, Jr
20 Sara Silverman
21 Elaine Kaplan
22 Michelle Levy
23 Eric Bush
24 Rachael Maas
     Kali Sherman
25 Donna Goldich
26 Regan Dean
     Alyssa Winkler
28 Bob Singer
     Mauricio Betech
31 Donald Bonaventure
     Steven Paroczay
     Carin Carlson
August Anniversaries
 1 Carol and Michael Carpenter
18 Nancy and Bob Singer
20 Janet and Donald Bonaventure
23 Susan and Lawrence Smolinsky
Yahrzeits
June 1: Karoly Roheim, Ann Rubin, Rebecca Doumer Watsky, Etta Kaplan Epstein, Ronald Kronick, Charles Norman Rubin, Jonathan Shapiro, Betty Kaufmann, Herman Kleinberg
 
June 8: Rachel Loeb, Flora Rambach, Jacob Hirschmann, Lewis Kober, Louis Asinofsky, Judge Alvin Rubin, Richard Levin, Ernest Kahn, Theodore Kaufman, Frida Roheim, Bernard Sherman
 
June 15: Paul Goldberg, Charles Heard, Erich Sternberg, David Lee Suffrin, Alan Bander, Leslie Sirtes, Richard Barnett, Sheldon Beychok
 
June 22: Karl Baum, Pauline Fletcher, Lewis Kaufman, Marilyn Friefeld Slipman, Albert Maas, Jr., Sidney Mendelvitz, William Spielberger, Lorretta Bogoff Friedman, Sarah Mendelvitz, Rosina Weil, Gerald Posner, Michael  Saltz, Max Ross, Ethel Watsky
 
June 29: Katherine Beychok, Mrs. Andre Grumbach, Carl Ernest Hollander, David Ronin, Alex Suffrin, Rosa Wolff, Herbert Fisher, Lottie Miller, Barbara Aronofsky Latham, Esther Feld Mandell, Ethel Zion, Mark Bloomberg, Wolff Botnick, Anne Hinson, Flora Katz, Miriam Radlauer
 
July 6: Max Levine, Isaac Albert Meyer, Isaac Pailet, I. E. Rubin, Estelle Helen Saltz, Bette Sher, Jeanette Ettinger, Eva Ingerman, Vivien Krupkin, Clarice Pesses, Marks Fellman, Alan Barnett, Leah Sternberg, Hedwig Fink Kober
 
July 13: Alisa Ginsburg, Sam Scheinuk, Ada Shackleton, Mose Wander, Sam Sar, Herman Knurr, Bertha Shook, Jeannette H. L. Simon, Shirley Kizelstein Hutt, Harry Tatar, Benjamin Cherry, Teresa Lara
 
July 20: Rebecca Lulky, Fritz Moellenhoff, Sarah Plonsker, Eva Singerman Berenson, Frieda Dainow, Mrs. Henry Knurr, Morris Fishbein, Ida Graves Mandell
 
July 27: Molly Ross, Dr. Bernard Kaplan, Rena Shaab, Peter Bush, Ben Glazer, Ezekiel Malen, Maureen Rosin, Meyer Horowitz, Albert Weintraub
 
August 3: Jennie Safer, Folix Brianis, Frances Hershberg, Marion Meskin, Harvey Hirsch Posner, Leonard Rosenson, Elaine Bronsweig, Pearl Rayner, Max Watsky, Nina  Frank, Rosa Raffelson, Everardo (Lalo) Rodriguez, Dr. Irving Rusoff, Leah Bensman, Bluma Hoffman, Ida Leibovitz
 
August 10: Clara Devries, David Levine, Roger Adcock, Harry Louis Wander, Dora Drucker
 
August 17: Eileen Schwartz, Simon Streiffer, Boris Joshua Karlin, Joseph Safer, Catherine Heard, Charles Weintraub, Michael Max Schenker, Harold Austern, A. B. Waldman, Irma Kaufmann Weinheber, Maurice Wolf
 
August 24: Lottie Saltz, Louis Saul, Florence Weitz, Richard Williams, Adelaide Friedman, Murray Horowitz, Betty Benjamin, Dulcie Trahan, David Winkler, Patricia Ernst, Neil Litten, Jacob Bogoff, Esther Frank, Albert Kober, Lillian Kraft
 
August 31: Herbie Fields, Simone Johnson, Rose Cohen Masrie, Jeannette Samuels, Elliot Finkelstein, Gerson Finkelstein, Julius Kaufmann, David Malen, Joseph Hiedovitz, Robert  Sherman, James Brumberger, Helen Schweitzer, Ethel Jankoff, Isadore Saltz, Hyman Saltz, Betty Strauss, Roberta Trief, Jean Barnett, Harry Beychok, Jacob Isaacman, Joyce Welborn
 
Special Events
 
The Alfred G. Rayner Center is excited to announce a new improvement to our school this upcoming summer. The ExploreYard will be an outdoor, hands-on classroom for experiential education.
 
Our plans for the ExploreYard include: Container gardening, a Sound Wall for musical exploration, a Patio Playhouse, Sand tables, Nature Exploration, a Stage for Dramatic Play, a Toy car track, a Bucket scale for STEM exploration, and more!
 
Our Phase I Build Day is coming up! Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you are able to attend for all or part of the day. 
 
Sunday, June 3 from 8 am - 1 pm. add to calendar
Shabbat Yeladim
Join us for our first Shabbat Potluck of the summer! Please bring a dairy or parve entree or side dish to share with your congregational family. Following Kabbalat Shabbat services Friday, June 8. add to calendar
Jewish Journeys has partnered with the Jewish Book Council's National Jewish Book Clubs to launch Beth Shalom Synagogue's Book Club. Our book club will be a space dedicated to social, educational, and cultural enrichment through reading and discussion of contemporary books that span the Jewish world. This summer, the book club will be discussing The Waiting Room by Leah Kaminsky, If All the Seas Were Ink by Ilana Nava Kurshan, and To Heal a Fractured World: The Ethics of Responsibility by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks. Following Shacharit ShabbatSaturdays, June 9 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." style="font-family: verdana, geneva, sans-serif; font-style: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-size: 14px;">add to calendar, July 14 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." style="font-family: verdana, geneva, sans-serif; font-style: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-size: 14px;">add to calendar, and August 18.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." style="box-sizing: border-box; padding: 0px; margin: 0px; font-family: verdana, geneva, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; font-size: 14px; vertical-align: baseline; border: 0px; outline: none; color: #287abb; text-decoration: none; transition: color 0.3s;">add to calendar
Join Rabbi Natan and your Beth Shalom family in the observance of Tisha B'Av. On Tisha B'Av, the synagogue is transformed from a joyous Bet HaT'filah (House of Prayer) into a place of sorrow and despair. Eicha (Lamentations) is chanted and a hauntingly plaintive melody by candlelight while worshippers sit in low stools. Saturday, July 21 at 7 pm.add to calendar
Come celebrate the incredible career of Dottie Smith, Director of the Rayner Center, upon her retirement after three decades of service with a Shabbat Celebration and Dinner. Friday, August 3 at 6 pm.add to calendar
 
Looking Ahead
 
​Erev Rosh Hashanah: September 9
Erev Yom Kippur: September 18
Erev Sukkot: September 23
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Visitors are always welcome!

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Let us show off our audacious Southern hospitality!

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Jun
22

06.22.2018 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Jun
23

06.23.2018 9:00 am - 10:00 am

Jun
23

06.23.2018 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Jun
24

06.24.2018 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Jun
24

06.24.2018 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm

Jun
29

06.29.2018 6:00 pm - 6:30 pm

Jun
29

06.29.2018 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Jewish Songs For Kids (and kids-at-heart)

A YouTube playlist curated by our Music and Programming Coordinator, Nick May
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