Saturday 5:30 pm Sunday 10:00 am With Choir, and Sunday School for children ages 4 - 13 years of age. Nursery Care is available for younger children. Please join us for coffee hour after the service.
The Children's Jewish Education Group SUNY Purchase Campus 735 Anderson Hill Rd. Purchase, NY (914) 864-1267 www.cjeg.org
CJEG Presents an Alternative to Traditional Jewish Education By Alice Levine
Updated March 3, 2014 Armonk resident Steven Harrison was looking for something different from a traditional Hebrew-school experience for his younger son. His older son had attended Hebrew school at a traditional temple and had become a Bar-Mitzvah, but Steven felt a less traditional education made more sense now. After attending an open house at Children’s Jewish Education Group (CJEG) last year, he felt he had found the right match.
CJEG, founded in 1961, is a cooperative school for children from kindergarten through seventh grade that was developed and is currently run by parents seeking an alternative to temple-based Hebrew school. Their goal is to provide students with a foundation to experience the “joy, pride and appreciation of being Jewish, while discovering the richness and uniqueness of the Jewish heritage.” CJEG in Westchester is housed on the SUNY Purchase campus and conducts classes on Sunday mornings, while also hosting families for holiday celebrations.
“I wanted a more informal education for my younger son. CJEG offers a less traditional, more grassroots approach to creatively teaching kids about traditions and culture. The experience has been really enjoyable for my whole family. And when I see that my son actually looks forward to attending Sunday school classes there, I know I made the right decision,” said Steven.
President of CJEG Peter Romeo is very proud of their school. “We have paid teachers and staff but our parents are also an integral part of our school. CJEG offers a significantly less-expensive alternative to traditional temple membership, and while we’re not based in a temple, we utilize the sanctuary at Hawthorne Cedar Knolls for our high-holiday services. And we also have a teacher who offers additional classes for students who decide to become a Bar or Bat Mitzvah, and individual tutoring is another option available to our students.”
For the many families who celebrate the holidays together, CJEG offers an intimate, fun environment. On Sukkot, always a favorite holiday, children and parents build and decorate the Sukkah together. With parents so involved at CJEG, the kids enjoy a very special experience celebrating the holidays.
CJEG is planning an open house at their school at SUNY Purchase on March 30, from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. For more information, please visit their website at www.cjeg.org or call Randi Sperber at (914) 864-1267.
March 14, 2014 Purim celebrates the deliverance of the Jews in the Persian Empire from persecution over 2,000 years ago as told in the Book of Esther (the “Megillah”). Sunday’s celebrations of Purim, held at a variety of locations, will include a festive meals and rejoicing while children dress in costumes.
Congregation B'Nai Yisrael of Armonk will begin their Purim celebration on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. with the Megillah reading: congregants and community members can hear the story of Esther acted out by a zany cast. Immediately following will be a carnival with games, a bouncy castle, prizes and plenty of treats. All are welcome. Rabbi Seth M. Limmer has blogged about observing the Fast of Esther on the day before Purim: rabbilimmer.cbyarmonk.org
Pleasantville Community Synagogue (PCS) will hold their fourth annual Palooza week from March 16 to 23. The events include a Hebrew School Purim celebration, PCS's first book fair with author readings, an Israeli documentary film screening, Friday night dinner, and services led by 3rd grade students. For more information visit http://www.shalompcs.com.
Temple Shaaray Tefila in Bedford Corners is hosting a Purim carnival on Sunday for families. A Megilla Mishegoss Spiel and service will be hosted by Jonathan Geffner and friends from 9:30 to 10:00 a.m. for families with children ages five and under, and from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. for families with children in kindergarten and older. Following the 9:30 a.m. service will be hamantaschen baking and Purim basket making. The Purim carnival for all ages will be held from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The carnival includes face painting, crafts, a tie-dye station, a DJ dance party, and NYC food trucks. Admission is $20 per child in advance, $25 at the door, and parents are free. Visit online:shaaraytefila.org for advance tickets.
Chabad of Bedford presents a Purim circus on Sunday from 11:00 a.m to 1:00 p.m. at Bedford Historical Hall. The event includes Purim crafts, balloon art, a Purim lunch feast, Chinese acrobats and hamantaschen. The fee is $25 per family. The Megillah reading will be held on Saturday March 15 at 8:15 p.m., followed by live music and dinner. Visit www.Chabadbedford.com for additional information.
The Jewish Family Congregation of South Salem will host their Purim carnival from noon to 12:00 p.m.; it will be led by the B'nai Mitzvah students. There will be games, prizes, freshly popped popcorn, crafts, and lunch with hamantaschen dessert.
North Castle's Middle Patent Church Holds Yearly Advent Service
December 14, 2013 The Advent service celebrated at the Middle Patent United Methodist Church on December 8 of this year may have been much like the one in 1848, when neighbors and friends of the community gathered in the front of the small church at the corner of Bedford Banksville and Middle Patent Roads. They listened to carolers standing along the few steps in front of the historic building. The group then moved inside and upon entering the chilly church were quickly warmed by the spirit of the holiday and the dozens of people in attendance. Everyone remained bundled up, some wrapped in blankets, as the organ was played between the prayers and singing of Christmas carols. The single-room church is simply designed with handsome oak wood pews, pulpit, and the original oil lamps along the walls and gallery.
"This was our 43rd Advent service," said Chris Daillak, a Trustee of the Middle Patent Church. "I believe I might have attended all of them."
In a 1993 booklet from the The North Castle Historical Society, the late Richard N. Lander, a church trustee, Town historian, and life-long resident of North Castle, wrote that the church had an active musical program dating back to the early 1860's.
"Middle Patent Church has no congregation and only a few services a year, with the Advent service being the main event. The church has been in such a state of flux this year with the death of both the past presidents, Jean Lander and Missy Taylor White," said Daillak. "Jean had run the church for more than 35 years and Missy took over under Jean’s direction for the last several years. Their deaths, in combination with the closing of the Armonk Methodist Church, left the remaining trustees unsure if we would be able to have a service this year." The Middle Patent Church was originally an offshoot of the Armonk Methodist church on Bedford Road in Armonk.
The Advent service brought participants back to many such services in the past. Everyone recognized their good fortune that Terry Kimball, a lay leader of a neighboring church, offered to conduct the service so the Advent tradition could continue. Once again, the future of the Middle Patent Church is uncertain, but its extensive history still holds a special place in the community.