Jewish learning festival Jan. 19-20

The Puget Sound area will host the second annual Limmud Seattle at Bellevue Community College.

  • Friday, January 18, 2019 9:48am
  • Life

The Puget Sound area will host the second annual Limmud Seattle at Bellevue Community College Jan. 19-20.

The event will draw Jewish people of all ages from Washington as well as attracting participants from Portland, Ore., Vancouver and as far as Jerusalem.

Limmud, which comes from the Hebrew word meaning “learning,” provides sessions on a range of Jewish topics, from arts and culture, to history and philosophy to parenting for singles and couples. Sessions are led by educators, professionals or passionate community experts. “We are thrilled by the diversity of programming and attendance for the 2019 Limmud Festival,” said Cara Abrams-Simonton, co-chair of Limmud Seattle. “With over 150 volunteers we’ve created a festival where everyone can find something relevant for their life.”

Examples of programming include:

• Modern Society and Societal Change conversations that bring together issues that matter to society at large and their impact on Jewish communities.

• Mind, Body and Soul sessions open to beginners and experienced practitioners of yoga, meditation and other holistic approaches to center physical and mental well-being

• Philosophy and Culture, offering multiple ways to delve into Jewish sacred texts with insights that are meaningful and inclusive.

• Social Justice and Ethics, confronting anti-semitism, what it means to be Jewish, gender and non-binary issues in the Torah will be discussed during several sessions.

• Programming for Youth including hands-on activities to celebrate the trees, learn about saving the planet, bring alive human virtue through art making, and Jewish culture and tradition through song.

Participation is a cornerstone of the Limmud Festival with opportunities to be part of performances, sing-a-longs and a drum circle.

Local, national and international performers include Alicia Jo Rabins and Texas native Joe Buchanan. Participants can join a pick-up Klezmer band with local artists Harvey Niebulski and Jay Krulewitch.

Other opportunities include presentations by David Moss an internationally recognized illustrator and animator, who will demonstrate how color, form and design are used to expresses Jewish text and values through Ketubbot (Jewish marital agreements), books and prints, Marge Eiseman, an award-winning Jewish educator and singer-songwriter who will conduct a workshop on creating comfort shawls, and Simon Emein, a Jewish educator known for his interactive youth programs, will lead participants in a session about the beauty of Jewish scribal arts through calligraphy.

“Once again we scheduled this event to coincide with Martin Luther King weekend,” explained Limmud Seattle co-founder Robert Hovden. “The festival will feature a tribute titled Melodies for Martin, where participants will gather to sing songs from the civil rights, labor and anti-war movements.”

Limmud is part of a global movement of volunteer-led Jewish learning festivals hosted in 85 communities in 44 countries across six continents ranging from the first event in London in 1980 to more recent festivals in Hong Kong, India, Peru and Colombia.

To learn more or purchase tickets ($36-$72) go online to

More in Life

Ready or not, college is arriving | Guest article

How parents can help their students embark on a college career.

Leaving for college anxiety | Dear YFS

A monthly advice column about issues faced by Islanders.

SeaJAM, which kicks off the SJCC Arts + Ideas 2019–2020 season, will present “An Evening with Debra Messing” on Saturday, September 14, at Benaroya Hall’s Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall. Courtesy photo
SJCC prepares for second annual SeaJAM

SeaJAM will present “An evening with Debra Messing” on Sept. 14.

Photo courtesy of Greg Asimakoupoulos
                                A plaque commemorating the date the Asimakoupoulos family changed its name.
A summer to remember | On Faith

A monthly column dealing in faith.

Stephanie Quiroz/staff photos
                                Covenant Living at the Shores residents and staff with Ageless Aviation pilot and team at the Renton Municipal Airport on Aug. 12.
Covenant Living at the Shores Residents take flight

Tom Norris, Sid Boegl, Doug Wilkinson, and Jack Nelson take flight in a 1942 Boeing Stearman.

Dear YFS — How to address ‘lack of kindness’

Dear YFS is an advice column with reader submitted or posed questions from the Island.

Senior community gets new name, logo

The rebranding connects the community to its faith-based foundation.

Mike Woodsum of the Mountain to Sound Greenway Trust is the featured speaker for the Mercer Island Probus Club July meeting on Thursday, July 11. Courtesy photo
Greenway speaker at July 11 Probus Club meeting

Meeting date has changed for July; location has changed for summer meetings.

Celebrating the Fourth on the Eastside

Americans all over the country including the Eastside region will gather on… Continue reading

This willow tree had recently fallen and was only a stump. Now new life has grown where all hope had seemed lost. Photo by Greg Asimakoupoulos
Lessons from the resurrection tree

Finding hope in times of loss | On Faith

Objects for sale are displayed in sectioned areas throughout the store to make for organized shopping. Photo by Madeline Coats.
Thrift shop brings community together

Second-hand shop projected to bring in 2.9 million dollars this year alone.