Forthcoming Kehillah

For those of you who read the last issue of kehillah, you may have noticed the article promoting the upcoming Shavuot Cheesecake and Learning Festival. The evening was held from 7pm to 12:30am on June 11th and was an enormous success. We were privileged to have 21 teachers, 70 guests, and over a dozen cheesecakes! The event began with Ma’ariv and a plenary session during which I answered the question from last month’s kehillah (why do we eat dairy foods at Shavuot). Although Jewish tradition has many mystical suggestions for the custom’s origin, serving milk based foods such as cheesecake comes from the timing of the holiday in the agricultural cycle. In ancient Israel, many animals such as sheep, goats, and cows would calve earlier in the year. By the time of Shavuot, the calves would be weaned but the mother animals would still be producing milk. Thus, there was a lot of extra dairy around Shavuot time. After our plenary, we split into break away sessions (3 at a time), Limmud style.  I would like to take a moment to thank all of our session teachers: Sarah Angel, Diane Barnett, Even Cantor, Michael Conn, Miriam Edelman, Raymond Hart, Julian Hunt, Judith Ish-Horowicz, Simon Itkin, Krisha Leer, Berlin Leiman, Andrew Levine, Camilla McGill, Patricia Perry, Darren and Nathan Selman, Judy Weleminsky, and David Zell.  Also, an enormous thanks to our warden for the evening, Josie Knox! Throughout the night, we showcased the talents and interests of our Wimbledon members and it seems it was enjoyed by all. About the evening, attendees have said: “A building full of people sharing and discussing ideas for the whole evening.  Great energy, really enjoyable and some good cheesecakes as well!” “It was the best Tikkun Leyl Shavuot that we have been to. I was impressed with the rich variety of the sessions and the quality of the presenters. We do have a very talented community [the evening gave] so many people and giving them an opportunity to contribute and share their passions and their knowledge and, of course, their cheese cake making skills.” Even despite many people tired out from the day’s events (celebrating the Queen’s official birthday) and the lure of an evening football match, we had an impressive turnout.

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