Today's Building Hours
  • Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC
    5:30am - 10:00pm
  • Weinberg Park Heights JCC
    5:30am - 10:00pm
Shabbat Candle Lighting: 4:54pm
Join the J Locations Schedules
Today's Building Hours
  • Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC
    5:30am - 10:00pm
  • Weinberg Park Heights JCC
    5:30am - 10:00pm
Shabbat Candle Lighting: 4:54pm

Friday Nights, Beautiful Lights

Have you got Shabbat? We’ve Got Shabbat! 

On a festive Friday evening in early February, Jon Cardin, a lawyer and former legislator for the Greater Baltimore community, attended, along with his wife Megan and their two daughters, Dorothy and Micah, a “Got Shabbat” event, at the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation (co-hosted with the Jewish Museum of Maryland). Got Shabbat is an enriching family-friendly Shabbat celebration held at a different synagogue each month.

“We are members of Beth Tfiloh but we also enjoy Beth El, Beth Am, and Baltimore Hebrew,” Cardin said. “We’ve found that each synagogue has a different culture. B’nai Israel is very different from Bolton St., for example.”

Cardin continued: “I like meeting different families experiencing Shabbat through different communities’ and synagogues’ eyes, and my oldest daughter enjoys the different play times and running around as the adults chat.”

The Cardin family currently lives in Owings Mills; Cardin has been a Baltimorean all his life. Dorothy attends the JCC’s ECE’s programs, and Micah participates in the JCC’s parenting programs.

The family has attended Got Shabbat programs for more than two years. They first introduced Dorothy to the PJ Library, and later learned of Got Shabbat at a JCC Shabbat-by-the-pool event.

According to Lara Nicolson, the JCC’s Shalom Baltimore and Interfaith Engagement Director, who also directs the Got Shabbat program, Got Shabbat works for all kinds of families including families new to the area, interfaith families, and families new to Shabbat observance.

Before becoming director of the program, Nicolson was actually a participant in Got Shabbat. Her children were in the JCC for preschool and she wanted to explore and connect to other members.

Nicolson loved the program because, as she explains, “People get to meet new people and clergy have an opportunity to introduce themselves in the community.”

Beth El @ Federal Hill, the DBJCC, and the Associated’s Center for Jewish Camping

Beth El@ Federal Hill, the Downtown Baltimore JCC, and The Associated’s Center for Jewish Camping all came together to host another successful Got Shabbat later this past February.

DBJCC Program Manager Ellie Brown remarked, “This program is a great way for folks to visit a synagogue as a family without any pressure to join or make a commitment. The families love it — it’s great community building and a great experience that accommodates the little ones.”

“Many people agree that Shabbat has kept Jewish people together, and anything that keeps this spirit together benefits from this magic. My favorite part of this program is that some of the songs I sang as a tot are still a part of the tradition.”

Got Shabbat at The Ritz

On March 11, 2016, members of the JCC and Hadassah and Rabbi Etan Mintz of B’nai Israel came together to host a Got Shabbat at the Ritz, downtown. The event was billed as an “Intergenerational Shabbat” and was coordinated by JCC member Stacy Harvey, who resides at The Ritz.

With 54 Adults and 18 kids in attendance, the event was a very big success, comprised of baby boomers, individuals, and families with young children.

During the tot service, led by Tami Mintz, Rabbi Mintz’s wife, the adults were treated to a Kosher wine tasting. The menu included falafel, chicken gyros, and vegetable platters, and afterwards Rabbi Mintz led everyone in an informal Kabbalat service.

Next, Beth Israel Congregation is paired with PJ Library for a Got Shabbat on June 3rd, 2016, and as always, all are welcome! To register visit www.jcc.org/gotshabbat.

“It’s wonderful to stand back at each event and see families enjoying a carefree meal where everyone’s engaged in Shabbat in a really relaxed way, ” says Nicolson.