Shavuot FAQ

Where and when is the event?
The event will be held at University of the Arts, Gershman Hall at Broad and Pine. We’ll be kicking things off on Saturday, June 8 at 7:45 pm. Dinner will be around 10:00 pm, and sessions will go through the night. We’ll be concluding with sunrise services around 5:00 am on Sunday, June 9. A light breakfast will be available around 7:00-7:30 am following morning services.

Do I have to stay all night?
We’d love to have you there all night, but there will be plenty to experience no matter how long you stick around, and you are welcome to come and go as you please. Check out the schedule overview to the right so you know about when things will be happening.

What should I bring?
No need to bring anything but yourself and an open mind! It may be helpful to bring a water bottle and reusable coffee cup. We’ll have a quiet room available during the night, so feel free to bring a pillow if you think you may want to take a nap. There is no need to bring your ticket with you.

Will there be security?
Yes. There will be bag checks at registration and security guards on site throughout the night.

Why doesn’t the sign-up form ask me how many people are included in my registration?
It does! Just not first thing. The first part of the registration form asks you for a dollar amount for your donation. We are asking for $18-36 per adult, but you get to choose the exact amount. When you click on “donate,” you’ll be taken to a second page where you’ll be asked for the number of registrants and for their names.

This event is great! Can I help?
Yes! We need a large and dedicated crew of volunteers throughout the night. Click here to volunteer for set up, clean up, and more.

I didn’t RSVP. Can I still attend?
Yes! We’re happy to have you. If your name is not on the registration list, we’ll ask you to please come back to this website to give a donation after the holiday. We also ask for your understanding that it may take you longer to get into the event if your name isn’t already on the list.

My friends didn’t RSVP. Can they attend?
Yes! Everyone is welcome. However, it would help us immensely to have your registration in advance so we know how many people to expect and can plan appropriately for security, food, and chairs. In addition, your financial contributions are crucial to help us cover costs for the event.

Is the event accessible?
There is a wheelchair accessible entrance to the building on Pine Street. You can press the buzzer at that entrance or come to the front entrance and let a volunteer know that you need access. All floors of the building are accessible by elevator. If you have other accessibility needs you’d like to discuss before the event, please contact us!

Is there a way to pay by check?
Our online ticketing system is the best way for us to keep everyone’s registration information in one place. If you need to pay a different way, you can make checks payable to Congregation Rodeph Shalom (our fiscal sponsor) and send to Center City Kehillah, c/o Congregation Rodeph Shalom, 615 N Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19123. If possible, please indicate “Center City Kehillah – Shavuot” on the check. Please also send us a message so we can add your name to the registration list.

When should I get there?
Whenever works for you! Registration will open at 7:45  pm, and the Shabbat session will start at 8:00 pm. Shavuot candle lighting will be available at 9:15 pm, followed by evening services, and dinner will begin around 10:00 pm. You will be able to jump into the festivities at any point, but we really encourage you to take advantage of our entire night of programming by getting there early and staying as long as possible!

What should I do when I arrive?
Go straight into the entrance, check in at the registration table, and pick up a program booklet. Please note that there will be bag checks at registration. If you arrive later in the evening, head up to the auditorium to register there. Our volunteers stationed around the building can answer any questions and point you in the right direction.

What’s going to happen? Why is it all night?
In addition to all of the scheduled programming, there will also be board games, snacks, and space to talk and hang out during the night. We stay up all night because there’s a tradition that the Israelites fell asleep when waiting at Mt. Sinai, and in order to make up for their mistake, we do a tikkun, a repair, by staying up all night so we’re ready to receive the Torah. Also, it’s fun!

How can I find out what sessions will be offered?
The full schedule of teachers and sessions will be available as the event gets closer. When you arrive at the event, you’ll get a program book with details about the whole schedule, including room locations.

Will there be food?
So much food! Our kosher, dairy Shavuot dinner is being catered by Boscov’s. There will also be plenty of cheesecake and other goodies for dessert, snacks and caffeine throughout the night, and breakfast following morning services.

Let us know if you have any questions! We look forward to celebrating together!