Sukkahfest is perhaps the most joyous, and most diverse celebration of the holiday of Sukkot you will find. It takes the full spectrum of the community to manifest the joy of Sukkahfest at Isabella Freedman. Everyone is welcome – all ages, all streams, all colors, all identities.
We will be hosting two separate retreats: Sukkahfest over the start of Sukkot and Simchafest over Simchat Torah weekend. The option to stay on site during Chol HaMoed is not available.
This Kohenet-style service will have an earth-based, embodied, feminist approach that includes chant, meditation, and embodied practice as well as traditional forms of prayer. We use a mix of feminine, gender-neutral, and masculine G!d-language, and invite joyful, intentional worship. All are welcome!
All Streams of Judaism flow from One Source! “AllStream” is our name for the gathering of diverse Jewish communities at Sukkahfest. AllStream (rather than “Mainstream”) Judaism seeks to validate all streams of Jewish spiritual expression, recognizing that All of the ways of being Jewish flow from and return to One Source.
The retreat will also offer an Orthodox Partnership Minyan.
Our various educators lead a series of outdoor classes throughout the holiday, as well as yoga, tours of our organic farm, and guided hikes on our trails. While many of our activities are family friendly, there will also be some dedicated programs for kids. These will make use of our farm and the natural environment of the retreat center.
Kids programming will be outdoors as much as possible, including in the rain; a raincoat, rain boots, hiking boots or sneakers, and a labeled water bottle are required.
As a child, Shoshana Jedwab, would drum on parked cars, plates, tables, books and other people’s bodies. Shoshana Jedwab is a percussionist, singer-songwriter, worship leader, prize-winning Jewish educator and the Jewish Life Coordinator at the A.J. Heschel Middle School. As a Jewish educator, Shoshana has more than 30 years of experience bringing sacred Jewish texts to life. Shoshana Jedwab drums regularly for Romemu and serves as founding faculty member at the Kohenet Institute. Shoshana’s original, hip-shaking sacred music brings the ancestral past into joyous contemporary practice. The original songs of Shoshana’s 2016 debut album, “I Remember,” and her 2018 zipper song single, “Where You Go,” emerged from ceremonies Shoshana was leading, and are now being sung, and danced to, in churches, synagogues, and protest marches around the world. Shoshana Jedwab was included in Jewish Rock Radio’s Jewish Women Who Rock the Worship World. www.shoshanajedwab.com
Rabbi Jill Hammer, PhD, author, scholar, ritualist, poet, dreamworker and midrashist, is the Director of Spiritual Education at the Academy for Jewish Religion (www.ajrsem.org), and co-founder of the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute (www.kohenet.org). She is the author of Undertorah: An Earth-Based Kabbalah of Dreaming, Return to the Place: The Magic, Meditation, and Mystery of Sefer Yetzirah, The Hebrew Priestess: Ancient and New Visions of Jewish Women’s Spiritual Leadership (with Taya Shere), The Jewish Book of Days: A Companion for All Seasons, Sisters at Sinai: New Tales of Biblical Women, and The Book of Earth and Other Mysteries. She lives in Manhattan with her family.
Kohenet Shamirah Bechirah aka Sarah Chandler is a Brooklyn-based Jewish educator, artist, activist, healer, and poet. She teaches, writes and consults on issues related to Judaism, earth-based spiritual practice, respectful workplaces, mindfulness, and farming. Previously, Sarah served as the Director of Romemu Yeshiva, Chief Compassion Officer of Jewish Initiative for Animals, and Director of Earth Based Spiritual Practices at Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center. An advanced student of Kabbalistic dream work at The School of Images, Sarah is the founder and lead trainer for “Soft as a Rock: Public Speaking for Sensitive Souls.” softasarock.com. Currently she is the CEO of Shamir Collective, as a coach and consultant to high profile artists and authors to launch new music and books.
Rabbi Ezra Weinberg is a shaliach tzibur, officiant and
Jewish educator dedicated to creating connection and
community. He is a native Philadelphian and holds an MA in
Conflict Transformation. Reb Ezra officiates weddings and Bnai
Mitzvot, teaches a University course called, “One G-d, Three
Paths”, alongside a priest and Imam. He currently works with
individuals and families within the Jewish community and
founded ReVoice, a network of resources for Jewish going
Shira Kline (she/her), Co-Founder and Spiritual Leader of Lab/Shul NYC is a queer performance and ritual artist, recognized as a revolutionary educator and named one of the new re-engineers of Jewish life today. Known in the sanctuary as a spiritual adventurist and on the kiddie rock stage as ShirLaLa, Shira practices in the field of sacred play weaving liturgy, text, story and song into immersive sacred theatre. She tours extensively locally and globally with a vibrant invitation to connect, for a new and realized conscious world. She has been featured on NPR, hosted a queer Jewish podcast, led Shabbat on the Burning Man Playa, recorded four award-winning albums, and is a frequent guest of numerous international leadership conferences including Hava NaShira, SLBC, PJ Library, and is current faculty of the HUC-JIR Seminary’s Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music. Expansive and imaginative, Shira is here to nourish and ignite expression of the spirit. At home in Brooklyn, unceded Lenape lands, she lives to cook, dance, and play with her beloved and their daughter. Lab/Shul is an everybody friendly, artist-driven, G!d-optional experimental community for sacred Jewish gatherings. We can’t wait to welcome you here.
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