By COLlive reporter
Excitement is mounting and registration is filling up as the date of the Annual National Russian Shabbaton, the largest event of its kind for Russian Jewry in North America is fast approaching.
Over 1,000 adults and 200 children will gather at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Stamford, Connecticut, on Friday, February 28 – March 1, 2020, Gimel Adar – Hey Adar, 5780 to be inspired, educated, and entertained—in joyous Adar fashion.
Guests come from 7 countries, and 40 communities from across the US and Canada. The great attention paid to every detail is evidenced by the overwhelming number of guests who are eager to return year after year.
The National Russian Shabbaton is a joint project of Lubavitch Youth Organization and its Program Director Rabbi Kasriel Kastel and board member Rabbi Chaim Meir Lieberman, and Chamah International under the leadership of Rabbis Hillel Zaltzman, Moshiach Chudaitov and Binyomin Malachovski. The Shabbaton Director is Rabbi Benzion Laskin, Chamah Program Director, with participation of many dozens of Shluchim.
The event unites Jews from all stages of observance. For many, the Shabbaton is their first time experiencing an authentic Shabbos and learning about their rich Jewish heritage. The Shabbaton has proven to be a valuable tool for Shluchim. From communities across the US and from as far as Canada, Russia, and Ukraine, they bring their mekuravim year after year.
“This event is changing lives,” says Rabbi Laskin, “we are constantly hearing from participants who were inspired to join their local Chabad House, keep Shabbos, or send their children to Jewish schools—all because of the strong connection to Yiddishkeit that was forged at the Shabbaton.”
The guests relax and rejuvenate in luxury accommodations, are be wined and dined with eight gourmet meals by Nesher Caterers, royally entertained by world famous musical sensation and Broadway star Dudu Fisher, award-winning Israeli composer and singer Zlata Radzdolina, and Moish, a rising star on the Jewish music scene.
Seventy inspiring and educational sessions in both English and Russian—as many as six simultaneously—and forty stimulating workshops inspire and educate.
This year’s lineup of prominent lecturers include: Rabbi Manis Friedman, Rabbi YY Jacobson, Israel’s Consul General in New York Ambassador Dani Dayan, author of “From Infinity to Man” Edward Shifrin, Rabbi Yehoram Ulman of Sydney Bais Din, Hollywood producer and screenwriter David Sacks, former mobster Myron Sugarman, child and family psychologist Rebbetzin Esther Ofengenden (full list of speakers).
Special programs for singles afford them the opportunity to meet their bashert. Expert Shaddchaniot will meet one-on-one to help singles find their soulmates. Each year several couples who met at the Shabbaton are married.
Over 30 counselors run fun-filled, educational programs to engage the teens, and the day camp keeps the two hundred children happily occupied, freeing their parents to participate in the program worry-free, and to get the most out of the Shabbaton. Babysitters entertain and care for the little ones. The amazing children’s program is very ably run by a veteran educator and her talented staff.
As per the Rebbe‘s directive, the organizers make every effort to reach out to Yidden who are not yet frum. It is indeed an opportunity to encourage all Russian speaking Jews—in fact, all Jews—to be part of a most intense learning experience, and to bond with fellow Yidden in a warm, congenial atmosphere. Lifelong friendships are forged at the Shabbaton.
The best testimonial to the success of the Shabbaton is the most-oft remark heard from participants: “When is next year’s Shabbaton?”
There are over 20 days left until the Shabbaton. For the past few years people have to be turned away due to lack of space. Register at russianshabbaton.com or by calling the Shabbaton hotline: 646-565-3735