Shabbat and Holidays are a great time to bring food and sustainability programming to your community. We are flexible and able to craft quality programs that meet the needs of your community. The range of possibilities includes a D’var Torah on Shabbat, a full Scholar in Residence weekend, community wide or family learning programs, farm visits, cooking classes and urban homesteading workshops. Programs can be open to the public or for a limited community.
Below is a sample of program options. To find a fit for your community, also check our past programs.
Community Skillshare & Lag B’Omer Party
Embodying a Shmita economy allowing for periods of rest, and of communal sharing. We will hold workshops around Jamaica Plain, then gather at Nehar Shalom Community Synagogue for a celebration.
Explore Tu B’shvat in New England
What’s in season? Maple syrup!
Tu B’shvat is traditionally a time to asses our field and fruit trees. Led by the Land’s Sake Farm educators, we’ll explore the sugaring process, from tree-tapping, wood splitting, sap collecting, boiling and bottling. Making local maple syrup is highly weather dependent, so our exact activities will be determined closer to the program date. Be prepared to be outside. Open to all ages!
Food Day Shabbat
In celebration of National Food Day, we coordinated home-hosted Shabbat dinners and provided hosts with study texts and resources to facilitate Food Day conversations. Food Day is a nationwide celebration of healthy, affordable and sustainably produced food and a grassroots campaign for better food policies.
Inclusive Tu B’Shevat Seder
Join Yachad, Congregation Shaarei Tefillah, K’Sharim and Ganei Beantown for an inclusive Tu B’Shevat Seder celebrating the new year of the trees. Over the course of the evening we’ll journey through the seasons and explore our relationship to the natural world. In its 20th year, this family event includes wood crafts, songs, movement, Tu b’Shevat treats, and a kosher, vegetarian dinner. Bring your friends and be prepared to make new ones, all ages and abilities welcome!
Interfaith Food Justice Tu B’Shvat Celebration
How are we connected to the idea of Tu B’shevat as a tree’s “birthday,” their coming of age as a bearer of fruit? How are we respecting (or disrespecting) our sources of food? Join us to connect across faith backgrounds and as young people involved in justice work.
Learn the story behind each of the pieces of the Lulav, and their ecological niche and needs. Think about what might serve those roles from our New England region and create your own local lulav (ritual fronds).
Shabbat Scholar-in-Residence Weekend
Includes a Friday night D’var Torah, Shabbat lunch discussion and family friendly programming.
Sukkot Harvest Celebration
Sukkot, a biblical harvest festival, is also a time to welcome guests. We welcome you into the kitchen and help prepare our meal together. Afterwards, we will come together under the stars in the Sukkah for a feast of local food and drink. We’ll get a savory taste of Torah and provide opportunities to shake the lulav and meet new friends. Pictures from this event are here.
Sukkot on the Farm
Multiple congregations and community groups co-sponsor this annual event for folks of all ages. Activities include harvesting in the fields, building and decorating a Sukkah, pressing apple cider, singing, dancing and storytelling. You can see pictures of recent Sukkot on the Farm gatherings here.
Tu B’shvat: Cocktails and Community
Rather than mixing wines, we made four seasonal alcohol infusions. Featuring nosh representing the seven species of Israel; and four local organizations working to strengthen our local food system and access to healthy food. In keeping with the biblical tradition of counting the fruit-tree tithe from the 15th of Shvat, a portion of the cost of the evening will be donated.
Ganei Beantown has presented Divrei Torah on Shabbat and at professional conferences on topics such as:
- A Garden of Wonder: Using the Garden to Nurture Spiritual Growth and Cultivate Radical Amazement
- Care and Feeding of Educational Community Gardening Projects
- Caring for Others, Food Aid, and Purim
- Connecting to the Source: Local food movements and spiritual dimensions of agriculture and eating
- Growing for Good: A local community approach to promoting sustainability and awareness through education, exploration and gardening projects
- How to start a Jewish Sustainability Project…. Sustainably
- Is a Jewish Sustainable Food System Possible? Contemporary and Historic Perspectives
- Models of Sustainability: Can we translate Biblical ideas to contemporary frameworks?
- Our Relationship to the Land
- Shmita! Designing a Year of Economic Justice, Radical Sharing, and Rest for the Land
- The Torah of Eating: Sourcing our Food Ethically, Consuming our Food Responsibly
- Tu B’shvat: How do we reclaim relevance to this holiday in the midst of a New England winter?
- Tzedek, Tzedek, Tirdof; Justice, Justice, Fair Trade and You