August Events

With summer heating up, and then heating up some more, we still have a whole month of great events to look forward to. Even if you’re down the shore on weekends, Center City has plenty going on during the week!

Fridays in August: Summer Friday Night Shabbat Series
6:00 pm, Friday nights, Rodeph Shalom, 615 N. Broad Street
Join us for our summer casual, dress-down, Friday evening Shabbat Services. During the d’var Torah, we will explore the lessons and virtues from the modern Jewish community. We will turn to sources such as Abigail Pogrebin’s book, Stars of David:Prominent Jews Talk About Being Jewish and our Yom Kippur Machzor, embodying the essence of tikkun olam/repair of the world. Through these resources, we will discover how different people live Jewishly and pursue their purpose.

Monday-Friday: Rabbi Hirsch’s Weekday Morning Talmud/Halacha Class
7:40 am, Mekor Habracha/Center City Synagogue, 2000 Chestnut Street
Now you can learn how Jewish law is traced to the source! Every weekday morning Join Rabbi Eliezer Hirsch and Mekor Habracha in studying the Talmud, tractate Berachot, the commentaries and the application of the laws of blessings on food. Study on a high level with no Talmudic background necessary. You can also attend morning minyan first, which ends promptly at 7:30-7:35 AM followed by a short halacha class and Brachot Chabura. Both men and women are welcome to attend.

Monday, August 1: Myth & Menagerie Exhibition Closing Reception and Lecture by Artist, Lesley Dill
5:00-7:00 pm, the Gershman Y, 401 S. Broad Street (at Pine)
Lesley Dill’s Myth and Menagerie exhibition runs through August 1 in the Gershman Gallery, and you’re invited to the closing reception on August 1, including a lecture by the artist. Dill works in sculpture, photography, printmaking, and performance, using a variety of media and techniques to explore themes of language, the body, and transformational experience. Myth & Menagerie serves as the premiere of a newly produced body of work by Dill. These new works are a collection of unusual animal/human puppet-like forms incorporating text and language.

Wednesday, August 3: Do You See What I See? Interfaith Conversations at the PMA
7:00-8:30 pm, Philadelphia Museum of Art (2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway)
Interfaith couples and individuals who grew up in interfaith homes are invited to join us for an exploration of art and religion at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. We’ll explore how selected works of art relate to each person’s current religious/spiritual outlook. Co-sponsored by InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia, The Collaborative, Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia.

Wednesdays, August 3, 10, 17, and 24: Summer Poster Design Workshop for Teens
1:30-3:30 pm, National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 S. Independence Mall E (5th and Market)
The National Museum of American Jewish History invites teens of all levels, interests, and skills in art to study the craft of poster design. This workshop series is inspired by the Museum’s current special exhibition, Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution. Registration is free but required. Space is limited. To register, email or call 215-923-3811 ext. 118. About the Exhibition:

Friday, August 5: Israel Scouts Friendship Caravan Song and Dance Performance
12:15 pm, Jewish Community Services Building, 2100 Arch Street
Sponsored by KleinLife: Center City. Don’t miss a fabulous performance of popular Israeli song and dance by this dynamic and inspiring entertainment troupe! Admission is free but contributions are appreciated. A hot kosher lunch at 11:15 am may also be reserved. Please RSVP for the concert and optional lunch by July 29. Contact Lynne Ellis, 215-832-0539 or for further information or to RSVP.

Saturday, August 6: Potluck Playdate for Infants & Toddlers
4:00-5:30 pm, Seger Playground, 1020 Lombard Street
Relax on Shabbat afternoon in the park with young families from Temple Beth Zion-Beth Israel. Bring some food that is nut-free, kosher, and dairy or parve and spend the late afternoon noshing and making new friends.

Thursday, August 11: Borscht Belt Opening and Joke-Telling Competition
6:00-8:00 pm, the Gershman Y, 401 S. Broad Street (at Pine)
The Borscht Belt was a vacation destination for Jewish Americans and home to resorts such as Grossinger’s and The Concord as well as bungalow colonies. The area was known especially for its connection to nightlife and comedy. Photographer Marisa Scheinfeld grew up there as economic and other factors sent the region into rapid decline. Scheinfeld has documented that decline through a series of evocative, sometimes ghostly, large-scale images of empty hotels and resorts. And in honor of the region’s rich history of Jewish comedy, we will also be holding a joke-telling competition during the opening reception.

Sunday, August 14: Second Sunday Family Corner
10:00 am-3:00 pm, National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 S. Independence Mall E (5th and Market)
As the world watches the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, the Museum is celebrating the games with a sporty Sunday of family fun! Join us for a look through our core exhibition as we emphasize the role of athletics in Jewish American history, and create some sports and activities based arts and crafts. Free with Museum admission.

Tuesday, August 16, 23, and 30: Taste of Judaism: Are You Curious?
6:00-8:00 pm, Congregation Rodeph Shalom, 615 N. Broad Street
Summer classes taught by Rabbi Eli Freedman. Bring your own dinner. A free, 3-session class for beginners — Jewish or not — that explores the topics of Jewish spirituality, ethics and community values. This class is designed for those who would like to explore or re-explore the foundations of our tradition and are looking for an entry into Jewish life. Contact Catherine Fischer to register or for more information at 215-627-6747 x246 or Taste of Judaism was created by the Union for Reform Judaism.

Monday, August 22-Friday, September 2: Makom Community Summer Camps
9:00 am-6:00 pm each day, Makom Community, 2000 Chestnut Street
Looking for fun activities for your child(ren) during the weeks between when their camp ends and school begins? Makom Community is your answer! We have two weeks of incredible activities that will have your child exploring the city while immersed in a wonderful Jewish environment. Each day will include a field trip, healthy snacks, friends, and of course FUN!

Sunday, August 28: One Book, One Congregation
11:00 am, Penn Center House Leisure Lounge, 1900 JFK Blvd., 2nd floor
Join Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir ~ Heart of the City, while Rabbi Julie Greenberg will lead a discussion about “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate” by Naomi Klein. The book is a brilliant explanation of why the climate crisis challenges us to abandon the core “free market” ideology of our time, restructure the global economy, and remake our political systems.

Save the date for Sunday, September 11: Bike Tour of Jewish Philadelphia
Details coming soon!