The Hippie: Dreadlocks and Bagels What: Tashlich, a nature work, and a pot-luck vegetarian dinner When: Friday, September 13, 5:00 PM Where: Meet up at Rabbi Katy Z. Allen’s home (e-mail her at email@example.com to RSVP and get information) Why: Where better for a Bostonian-Jewish hippie to welcome the new year than on the banks of the Sudbury River, surrounded by open fields, wet meadows, fringing wetlands, mature upland wood, and fellow patchouli-drenched nature-lovers? Join Maayan Tikvah for tashlich and a walk in the woods of the Greenways Conservation Area, followed by a pot-luck vegetarian dinner in celebration of the second night of Rosh HaShanah.
The Hipster: Way too Cool for Hebrew School What: Walking tour of Jewish food in Brookline When: Sunday, September 9, 10 AM Where: E-mail Julia Goldberg at firstname.lastname@example.org to register and get starting point Why: You're a hipster, and so you're a snob about good music, good hair, and good food. What this probably means is that you've written off the grub of your ancestors and opted instead for a culinary life of sushi, tapas, and the like. Return to your roots this Rosh Hashanah with a hedonistic walking tour of Brookline's Jewish cuisine. What could be better than a leisurely stroll peppered with tastes of old favorites like matzo ball soup, latkes, and falafel, all washed down with kosher wines? The shops and restaurants you visit will offer insight into the Middle Eastern, European, and Asian influences on Jewish cooking as you sample them for yourself. If that's not worth rolling out of bed for at 10 a.m. on a Sunday, I don't know what is.
The Beshert Seeker: Something Old, Something Newish, Something Borrowed, Something Jewish What: Rosh Hashanah services at Havurah on the Hill When: Wednesday, September 12 at 6:30 PM through September 14 Where: The Vilna Shul, 18 Phillips Street Why: There's really only one destination for the Bostonian in search of love: Havurah on the Hill. Jews ranging in age from 18 to 39 gather at the historic Vilna Shul for communal Shabbat meals, monthly Friday night and holiday learning services, classes, and lectures. Perhaps you'll find your beshert when you attend this highly participatory Rosh Hashanah services led by Yoni Bock. Sign up fast—today’s the last day to reserve seats.
The Nouveau Jew: Better Late Than Never? What: Services followed by a New Year’s Eve party When: Wednesday, September 12, 6:30 PM Where: The Chai Center, 97 Marion #5, Brookline Why: Admit it. You've seen the light, gone ba’al tshuvah, and now all you really want to do is get chai. Well guess what? Rabbi Mayshe and Shifra Shwartz of the Brookline Chabad Chai Center want to get you chai, too. All of their Rosh Hashanah services are free, as is the party they’re throwing after the service on the first night. Get ready to break out the apples and honey, cake and wine, and start the year off sticky sweet.
The Super-Jew: You've Got Spirit, Yes You Do! What: Spiritual dance party at the Kavod Jewish Social Justice House When: Sunday, September 9, 5 PM Where: 165 Winthrop Road, Apt. B (off Washington Square), Brookline Why: Shake your money maker on Sunday, September 9, from 5 – 6:30 PM, when the funky fresh kids over at the Kavod Jewish Social Justice House host an afternoon of dance and creativity. Their Dance and Expressive Movement Workshop involves chakra-based movement, with a soundtrack that will make you want to groove like no one is watching. If it's a sunshiny day, you'll get down at Waldstein Park, but no matter what the weather, meet at the Kavod House first.
The Intellectual: Smarter Than Jew What: "Between Denial and Despair: Environmental T'shuvah and Jewish Tradition,” a lecture on religious environmentalism When: Saturday, September 8, 8:30 PM Where: Temple Israel, 477 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA Why: Think you've got all the answers? Okay, riddle me this: How does the environmental crisis challenge the Jewish tradition? What resources does the Jewish tradition offer to help us face the crisis? If you’re stumped, you might need to check in with Roger Gottlieb, Ph.D. The author of A Greener Faith: Religious Environmentalism and our Planet’s Future, Dr. Gottlieb will speak about the moral and religious elements of environmentalism.
The Intellectual: Smarter Than Jew What: Steven Pinker lectures at Harvard Hillel When: Tuesday, September 11, 6 PM Where: Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle St, Cambridge Why: Because this New York Times-bestselling author and Harvard psychology professor not only knows how your mind works, but is happy to explain it to you. Not Rosh Hashanah–related per se, but thinking about giant life-and-death questions will certainly put you in the right frame of mind for the new year.
The Alterna-parent: Day Care and Dinner Parties What: Temple Aliyah's Back to Shul Fall Family Picnic When: Sunday, September 9, 4 PM Where: Claxton Field, Central Ave, Needham Why: A kosher barbeque in the park is a great opportunity for the kids to blow off some steam, and for you alterna-parents to unwind with a Hebrew National before the hard work of repenting begins.