In a fun evening of Jewish unity, over 1,000 Nassau County women will partake in the aromatic, delicious, and spiritual tradition of making challah bread together, in preparation for a Jewish day of rest that a million Jews worldwide expect to celebrate together.
The third annual Great Challah Bake will take place on Thursday, Nov. 10, at 6:45 p.m. at the Sands Atlantic Beach, 1395 Beech St., 11509.
Last year’s bake attracted a large and diverse group of local Jewish women: businesswomen, mothers of school children, daughters of Holocaust survivors, women with little or no knowledge of Jewish ritual tradition, ladies who bake their own challah regularly, and everyone in between. Many brought their daughters, sister, mothers, aunts, nieces and cousins with them. The theme of this year’s bake is “keeping it together,” tying together this ancient practice that all Jews enjoy taking part in.
Participants will learn how to prepare and braid two challahs, as well as the historical significance of this delicious bread, for an all-inclusive ticket price of $36 (includes baking supplies, instructions, musical entertainment, an apron, raffle prizes and a recipe book).
It’s a wonderful night out for girls aged 12 to 112, who will knead, braid, learn, meet new friends, sing and dance as they join together at this task. Emcee Jackie Bitton will lead the event, and Slovie Wolff will express some inspirational thoughts, in honor of her recently departed mother, the renowned Rebbitzen Esther Jungreis. Over a dozen organizations are joining together to make this event a success.
Thursday night’s Challah Bake is a precursor to a larger, international event on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 11 and 12. Called the Shabbat Project, it is a coordinated event taking place at the same time in 500 cities around the world that all Jews can be part of. Guidelines on how to observe the Sabbath will be given out at the Challah Bake, showing how easy it is to do.
Participants of the Challah Bake may sign up for the opportunity to spend the Jewish Sabbath (Friday at sundown through Saturday at sundown) with a local family, to experience the a authentic, traditional Sabbath. “Shabbat enables us to [unplug for a day and] set aside the distractions, demands and pressures of daily life, offering us the time and space to renew our inner selves and to reinvigorate our most important relationships,” said Rabbi Warren Goldstein, chief rabbi of South Africa and founder of the Shabbat Project.
A participant from last year’s bake, Teri Gatti Schure said, “I was moved to tears at the sight of 1,000 women dancing, singing, and baking challah together. I couldn’t help but wish that my mother-in-law, who was a Holocaust survivor, could have been there with me.”
To register for this event, go to thegreatchallahbakelistyle.eventbrite.com.
If you would like to volunteer at the event, or host people to experience Shabbat at your home, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To keep abreast of the event, search for #keepingittogether on social media.