- The next big thing in the Boston area is the temporarily-named JP Minyan (not affiliated with JP Morgan), in the southern Boston neighborhood of Jamaica Plain. JP is a booming area where many young Jews are moving but where not much organized Jewish activity has been happening yet. The new minyan, which has met twice so far, meets on the first Friday night of the month in participants' apartments for services and a potluck Shabbat dinner, and people are explicitly invited to come for either or both.
- Moving further south, to the demilitarized border region between DC and Maryland known to (some of) its residents as "Sheish Esrei Elyon" (Upper 16th St): Minyan Segulah will meet for the first time this coming Shabbat morning. This new project's name alludes to the inchoate Purple Line (currently locked in a tight competition with New York's Second Avenue Subway; which will be finished later?). Segulah will be meeting three times over the next few months in participants' homes for full-liturgy egalitarian services and Shabbat meals. Unlike JP, the neighborhoods of Shepherd Park and Silver Spring have a wide array of Jewish congregations of many flavors, and this adds another option to the mix.
- Further down the pipeline, we hear that a new Friday night thing is starting up in Vancouver. That's all we know for now; let us know if you hear anything.
- There's also something in the works for Shabbat morning in Center City Philadelphia, aiming to start on Shabbat Noach 5770 (October 2009).
- Here in New York, Techiyah of Harlem has been a victim of its own success, attracting not only Harlem residents but people from Morningside Heights, the Upper West Side, and elsewhere. We hear that this has led to communal soul-searching, since the minyan strongly identifies with Harlem (the name means "Renaissance") and meets in apartments, but there is now a shortage of hosts who actually live in Harlem. Techiyah has begun exploring its boundaries and occasionally meeting west of Morningside Park or south of 110th St (though not both, rachamana litzlan).
- People from all these communities and elsewhere will be gathering in New Hampshire at the National Havurah Committee Summer Institute, which is 3 months away and filling up faster than ever. In a year when everyone predicted that attendance would be lower due to the economy, Institute registration has been counterintuitively countercyclical: 205 people have already signed up, and 4 courses are full. The Institute could actually sell out Franklin Pierce University this year! So if you're thinking about going, register ASAP if you want to guarantee a spot.
- Not to be outdone, the Hadar Shavuot Retreat, in cooperation with Hazon, is offering a 50-mile bike ride as one option to get back from the retreat to New York City. I'm so there (and, given today's rain, glad in the end that I didn't register in time for the Five Boro Bike Tour).
Sunday, May 03, 2009
Hanhu chavurata #5
After a long hiatus, the independent minyan gossip column is back!