A Night Different from All Other Nights

This year we got an early start to Passover. On Wednesday, April 5 PJ Library Cooks and Creates, Y Beginnings Parenting Center, Bubbie’s Kitchen, and Building Bridges co-hosted a family seder and it was one for the books!

Upbeat music from Tkiya Tots welcomed guests as they arrived and set the tone for a warm evening of creativity and community. With Tkiya’s music as the soundtrack, the evening started with making charoset with PJ Library Cooks and Creates. It was an international activity, with recipes coming from not only the US, but China and Guatemala as well.

Once the tasty charoset was made and sampled, Cyndi led a dramatic and exciting reading of the PJ Library book Only Nine Chairs. Parents took turns reading pages from the book and the room was captivated by the silly tale of one family’s overcrowded seder.

Katherine from Tkiya Tots, along with Ezra on the drums, led the group in interactive song and creative movements to tell the story of Passover. Children from 13 months to 10 years old were caught up in the music and spirit! To make it more special Mara’s friend Todah showed up and helped to make the littlest of guests smile. After all the activity and fun, people sat down (for the frist time all night!) for a delicious meal. Abby led the group in an art project in which each child got to make a cushion to use for their Passover seat.

The whole room was buzzing and filled with a festive energy. We were thrilled to have a diverse group from the community including families from the Y Nursery School, past nursery students (now 10 years old), Be Me after school kids, Bubbie’s Kitchen participants, and our Washington Heights and Inwood neighbors! For some it was their first seder and for others it was one of many they will attend this year. We couldn’t have asked for a better night that was for sure different from all other nights!

By Rachel Gerstein, LMSW

About the Y
Established in 1917, the YM&YWHA of Washington Heights & Inwood (the Y) is Northern Manhattan’s premier Jewish community center — serving an ethnically and socio-economically diverse constituency — improving the quality of life for people of all ages through critical social services and innovative programs in health, wellness, education, and social justice, while promoting diversity and inclusion, and caring for those in need.

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