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Yom Shishi, 8 Adar 5778
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Message to the congregation from the Rabbi Search Committee:
http://vassartemple.org/links/rabbi-search-update
This space will be updated as the search progresses.  You can find it using the direct link on our home page or by going to the "Links" tab, then selecting "Rabbi Search Update."

Join us for Sisterhood’s annual
HAMANTASCHEN BAKING DAY
Sunday, February 4th (snow date 2/11/18)
9:00 – 1:00 in the temple kitchen 
R.S.V.P. to Judy Rosenfeld
635-2414 or hamantaschen@vassartemple.org 
Please bring a batch of dough made from the temple recipe (link below) and a rolling pin if you have one.  Remaining supplies and fun provided!

Not able to come and help?  Dough can be brought in in advance and placed in the Temple freezer - just let Judy know.

Click here for Hamantaschen recipe

Tiny Temple Purim Party
Sunday, February 4 from 10:30am-11:30am
Please join us for Tiny Temple’s free Purim Party! The tots, along with the Religious School, will learn about Purim through crafts, story, and song in a relaxed and friendly setting, and a special holiday snack will be served. Tots should come in costume!

   Parents, grandparents, families and children ages infant to 5 are warmly invited to join in the fun. Tiny Temple is open to all regardless of temple affiliation, is always free of charge, and is sponsored by the Sisterhood.

   To assist in our planning, please RSVP to Emma Arnoff and Jas Russo at  tinytemple@vassartemple.org . They will also be happy to answer any questions you may have about this wonderful, free, monthly program, and to put you on the Tiny Temple e-mail list.

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FEBRUARY LUNCHBOX  NEEDS YOUR HELP!
Our Temple Teens are sponsoring Lunch Box Sunday February 4th, and they need your help!  They need donations of 3 lbs. all beef hot dogs or 1 - 2 dozen pieces fresh fruit/bananas, which can be dropped off at the temple beforehand any time the building is open.  There will be a bin on the counter near the entry to the kitchen for nonperishable fruits.  Please LABEL all food "for LunchBox."  Please contact Danah Moore at danahmoore@hotmail.com or (845) 849-0952 to let her know what you are donating.  Any teens in grades 8-12 who would like to volunteer to cook/serve/clean up at LunchBox that day any time between 10:30 am - 1:45 pmshould also contact Danahto sign up.
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"The Talmud: Modern Ideas from an Ancient Text", taught by Senior Scholar Rabbi Paul Golomb, will be held the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month (Feb. 13 & 27) at noon.
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DCIC ANNUAL INTERFAITH PEACE CONCERT: 
AN AFTERNOON OF STORYTELLING

Sun. Feb. 4 at 2pm (snow date 2/11). Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 67 S. Randolph Ave., Poughkeepsie. Suggested donation $10--all proceeds benefit Hudson River Housing.  Questions: 471-7333.
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Happy Hour goes French! 
Please join us for a French-themed Kabbalat Shabbat Happy Hour on February 9th at 7:30 following services. Enjoy ratatouille, French cheeses, baguettes, wines and soft drinks. This month is hosted by Arnie Serotsky, Elena Collins, Bob Creedon and Andi Ciminello, with French desserts courtesy of the Katz family! Sisterhood sponsors these monthly gatherings, and we request donations of $10/person. You can drop money in a basket that evening, or send a check to Vassar Temple Sisterhood. The Happy Hours are fun and festive! Please RSVP to andi@ecopkny.com if you plan to attend.
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Calling all actors/singers/musicians/dancers! Our"Shin is for Shushan" Purimshpiel will take place onWednesday, February 28th at 7:30 and WE NEED YOU! Please be in touch with Rabbi Berkowitz (rabbi@vassartemple.org) if you'd like to participate. Prizes will be awarded to the best Elmo voice! 

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All My Life's a Circle: The Jewish Life Cycle
with Rabbi Leah Berkowitz

In partnership with the Poughkeepsie Public Library District

All Classes will be held at the Boardman Road Branch at 7 p.m.

The Jewish tradition provides a wealth of ways to make life-cycle moments meaningful. Whether we are welcoming a baby into the covenant, celebrating with a couple as they build a home together, or caring for the mourner following the death of a loved one--the Jewish community comes together to support individuals during life's big transitions. Together we will explore traditional rituals and their meanings, as well as modern interpretations and innovations. No previous knowledge is required.
2/13 New Beginnings: From Birth to B'nai Mitzvah
2/20 Signed, Sealed, Delivered: The Jewish Wedding
2/27 To Be Remembered is to Live Forever: Death and Mourning

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Keshet is a national organization that works for full LGBTQ equality and inclusion in Jewish life and is not associated with a particular Jewish denomination.  At its January 2018 meeting, the Vassar Temple Board of Trustees approved the following resolution: In keeping with our Jewish ethical obligation to sustain the dignity of all individuals, and with the inclusive policies of the Union for Reform Judaism, Vassar Temple supports Keshet’s Campaign for Trans Youth.  We commit to treating transgender individuals of all ages with respect, to embracing them in all facets of synagogue life, and to exploring means of member education and community support.  For more information visit https://www.keshetonline.org/resources/campaign-for-trans-youth/

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The City of Poughkeepsie’s Morse Elementary School, which the local Jewish Social Action Coalition has assisted in many ways, has applied for a grant for the improvement of their playground and gymnasium.  They need you to help them win this grant! Go to the website below, and cast your votes for Morse Elementary School. You can vote every day from now through 2/15. Anyone 18 years of age and older can participate in the voting process, so tell all your friends and family to cast a vote as well. The process is easy and only takes seconds. You can cast a vote every day. Please vote today; every vote counts!  Go to: http://danimalsshopriteschoolcontest.young-america.com, click on the link for Morse School and cast your vote now- it’s that simple!
 

Update on Morse School Library Project:   The Social Action Jewish Coalition  is doing well at the Morse School Library, if you judge by the beautiful smiles and thank yous that welcome you on Mondays and Thursdays.  You can join the team, we need YOU! Two hours once a week, every other week, once a month, every other month....you can determine what works for your schedule!  You can help a child find a book, he or she is interested in, you can chat and discuss what could be of interest and or you can man the computer! We are looking forward in the very near future to an update of the computer program used by the library system and to a newer computer!!  YOU can make a difference! Join us you will love it! For more information contact Muriel Horowitz at murielh@optonline.net or Perla Kaufman at Brandaliz5@optonline.net

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Sisterhood Book Club
Wednesday 2/21

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
Community Room at Collegeview Tower, 141 Fulton Avenue, Poughkeepsie
Irma Jacobs, discussion leader
RSVP or more information: Linda Babas 473-7931 or linda.babas.41@gmail.com


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Queer, Jewish, and in Prison: 
A Mini-Shabbaton with Evie Litwok
February 24, 2018 10 a.m.

Evie Litwok never thought that someone like her could end up in prison, much less solitary confinement. She walked out of prison homeles and penniless, and committed herself to advocating for prisoners’ rights. Come hear her experience of denied human rights, which millions of incarcerated men and women in the United States continue to suffer from, and how her connection to Judaism became her lifeline to hope. (Ms. Litwok will speak during Shabbat services and then continue her talk at our luncheon.)
Evie Litwok is the founder and director of Witness to Mass Incarceration, a national advocacy and policy reform organization whose mission is to collect oral histories of formerly incarcerated women and LGBTQ people and train them to become storytellers and activists. Litwok has an MA in psychology and is working on a Masters in Holocaust and Genocide Studies.

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Purim Pasta
Purim Pasta, a simple food drive we have held each Purim for a number of years now, is a special tradition at Vassar Temple and you are invited to participate!  On February 28th, please bring in boxes of pasta to Temple and shake them when wicked Haman's name is mentioned during the Megillah reading (the boxes are the groggers!).  Drown out evil and prevail with the noise of victory!  After services, the boxes will be collected and delivered to a local food pantry. Macaroni, ziti, bowties too -- any will do!  Get ready to shake, shake, shake!  The opportunity to fight hunger with our Jewish brothers and sisters is just boxes away. Questions?  Contact Marian & Ralph at socialaction@vassartemple.org or 845-849-0025.

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The "Sharing our Shabbat Tables" event, originally scheduled for March 9th, has been postponed due to scheduling needs.  Please watch the temple publicity for a new date.  In the meantime, please note that
there WILL be Shabbat services at 7:30 pm on Friday, 3/9.
 
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ANNUAL JOINT SHABBATON
April 13-15
with special guest author Anita Diamant

We are looking for a few frequent travelers to donate their Marriott Points for Anita Diamant's visit. Please contact rabbi@vassartemple.org if you can help!
On Saturday, April 14, Anita Diamant will be making herself available for an intimate meet-and-greet opportunity. For a donation of $118 person/$236 a couple, you can join the author for a private dinner hosted by Cantor Gail Hirschenfang and Rabbi Daniel Polish at their home. Donations will be used to offset the cost of the Shabbaton. There will be cocktails and hors d'oeuvres at 7:30, a brief Havdalah service at 8:15, and dinner at 8:30. Seats will be reserved for six people from each synagogue, and will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Please contact your clergy immediately if you would like to reserve a space at the table.

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We have a full inventory of SCRIP for all of the local grocery stores
and numerous major retailers.  We can obtain cards for over 500 national stores.  To see the full list, visit https://shop.shopwithscrip.com/Shop/Product/Browse#?saved
SCRIP costs you nothing extra but has a significant positive impact on temple finances.  Contact Sandra Mamis,  scrip@vassartemple.org or 914-456-3524 to place your order, or contact the temple office! 
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Save these dates!
Doris and Fannie Berlin Lecture
Sunday  April 29 at 4 pm
Dr. Deborah Tannen, Guest Speaker
Topic: Women’s Friendships as Compared to Men’s
From her recently published book:
You’re The Only One I Can Tell: Inside the Language of Women’s Friendships
Questions?  Sisterhood@vassartemple.org

Dutchess County Mitzvah Day- A Day of Community Service
Sunday May 6

Projects for Everyone! Planning has Begun!
To help, contact socialaction@vassartemple.org or director@jewishdutchess.org