Stand UP Chicago: Lake Michigan and Shabbat in Evanston

We hope that all of you had a restful Shabbat just as we did here in Evanston. We started our Friday volunteering at Talking Farm, a sustainable farm in Skokie, just a few minutes away from our home base. Teens learned about the importance of sustainability and got their hands dirty plowing fields, laying hay and weeding the farm. Teens then enjoyed a kosher Chinese restaurant before getting ready for Shabbat.

 

We walked to Dawes Park on Lake Michigan and enjoyed Kabbalat Shabbat services with the Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation of Evanston. Teens then retreated to the hotel for an evening Shabbat Oneg and an opportunity to bond with their gendered peers. Saturday yielded a day to sleep in and relax before waking up for brunch and a Torah study on this week’s parsha, Korach, which touched on leadership and items that help keep us grounded.
Teens then headed back to the beach to participate in Yoga led by Rachel Gitles, a Great Midwest Region BBG alum. We concluded our evening by visiting the Baha’i House of Worship, the oldest and only one in the United States, taking in the Cavern Beats, a Beatles cover band, and ending with Havdalah on the rooftop. Sunday, the teens woke up bright an early at 5:45am to volunteer at the local YMCA’s youth triathlon. We all cheered on runners, handed out water, painted faces, and supervised the bouncy castle. Teens returned to the hotel to start planning their own social venture that they will present on Wednesday. The rest of Sunday consisted of a trip to the Lincoln Park Zoo and MCL Chicago, an improv comedy theater, to end the evening with a musical comedy show.

 

Ellie Gershenwald (BBG #63) “I loved spending Shabbat doing yoga on the beach with the amazing friends I have made. It was a relaxing and restful weekend celebrating our Judaism.”

 

Michael Dreger (Portland, OR) “It has been such an amazing experience learning about the different ways businesses can operate. I am so glad I have been gifted with the ability to come to Chicago.”
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