Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center, Falls Village, CT
Save the date – check back for registration info.
- Celebrate the holiday in a vibrant, pluralistic Jewish community
- Kosher farm-to-table holiday feasts featuring Grow and Behold meats, and delicious and plentiful vegetarian delights
- All-night tikkun leil shavuot vigil with mystical teachings, a bonfire song circle, followed by daybreak outdoor morning services
- Bikkurim Parade: The most joyous and creative moment in our retreat! Renew and re-enact the ancient procession to the Temple for Shavuot with our First Fruits Offerings (Bikkurim).
- Camp Teva for Kids – Jewish Outdoor, Food, Farming, and Environmental Education fun
- Enjoy the majestic, subtle beauty of spring at Isabella Freedman
- Midnight mystical hike to the top of the mountain, as well as daytime hikes, organic farm tours, and more.
- Kosher artisanal cheese tasting and cheesemaking workshop
- Daily morning meditation and yoga sessions
- Beautiful Havdalah and closing ceremony
Stay tuned for this year’s presenters!
Rebbetzin Eve Ilsen is a psychotherapist, teacher, storyteller and singer. She has studied closely with mythologist Joseph Campbell, Eutonia bodywork founder Gerda Alexander, and trained for years in Jerusalem in waking dream and the therapeutic use of imagery with Mme. Colette Aboulker-Muscat. Since returning to the United states in 1986, Ms. Ilsen has also worked in tandem with her husband of blessed memory, Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi זצ׳ל, co-creating the Wisdom School, co-leading workshops and partnering at holy day retreats. In 2008, she was ordained as a Rabbinic Pastor. These days, Eve is invoking transformative states by performing in concert, as a singer and a storyteller.
Avraham Yizhak (Arthur) Green was the founding dean and is currently rector of the Rabbinical School and Irving Brudnick Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Religion at Hebrew College. He is Professor Emeritus at Brandeis University, where he occupied the distinguished Philip W. Lown Professorship of Jewish Thought. He is both a historian of Jewish religion and a theologian. He defines himself as a Neo-Hasidic Jew and studied with Alexander Altmann, Nahum N. Glatzer, and Abraham Joshua Heschel, of blessed memory. He has taught Jewish mysticism, Hasidism, and theology at the University of Pennsylvania, the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, Brandeis, and now at Hebrew College. He and his wife Kathy z”l were active in the founding of Havurat Shalom in Somerville, Massachusetts in 1968, and he remains associated with the Havurah movement. A prolific author, Dr. Green has published “Radical Judaism: Rethinking God and Tradition” (Yale University, 2010) “Ehyeh: A Kabbalah for Tomorrow” (Jewish Lights Publishing, 2002) and “A Guide to the Zohar” (Stanford University, 2003).
Rabbi Jill Hammer, PhD is an author, educator, midrashist, myth-weaver and ritualist. She is the co-founder of Kohenet: The Hebrew Priestess Institute. She is also the Director of Spiritual Education at the Academy for Jewish Religion, a pluralistic Jewish seminary. Rabbi Hammer is the author of The Jewish Book of Days: A Companion for All Seasons, and the co-author of The Hebrew Priestess and Siddur HaKohanot: A Hebrew Priestess Prayerbook. Rabbi Hammer conducts workshops on ancient and contemporary midrash, bibliodrama, creative ritual, kabbalah, Jewish dreamwork, and Jewish cycles of time. She was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary and holds a doctorate in social psychology from the University of Connecticut.
Rabbi David Ingber was named by Newsweek as one of 2013’s top 50 most influential rabbis in the United States as well as by The Forward as one of the 50 most newsworthy and notable Jews in America. He promotes a renewed Jewish mysticism that integrates meditative mindfulness and physical awareness into mainstream, post-modern Judaism. Rabbi Ingber has taught at the Academy for Jewish Religion, Columbia University, CUNY, Jewish Theological Seminary, Limmud LA, New York University, the 92nd Street Y, Pardes, The Skirball Center at Temple Emmanuel, and Yeshivat HADAR. Rabbi David studied at several yeshivot in Jerusalem and New York including Yeshiva University, Beit Midrash L’Torah, Yeshivat Chaim Berlin, and Yeshivat Chovovei Torah Rabbinical School. He also studied philosophy, psychology and religion at New York University. Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, founder of Renewal Judaism, ordained Rabbi David in 2004. Prior to founding Romemu, Rabbi David was Rabbi-in-Residence at Elat Chayyim Retreat Center.
Yael Kornfeld-Mlotek works as the Synagogue Outreach Social Worker at DOROT, where they are partnered with nine different synagogues on the Upper East and West Sides of Manhattan, advocating and serving older adults. Yael received her BA in Judaic Studies from Rutgers University where she wrote an honors thesis on “Who studies Yiddish Today and Why.” Before starting her MSW program at Hunter College School of Social Work, Yael was an Avodah Service Corps Fellow in Washington, DC. A co-founder of Base Hillel, which empowers rabbinic couples’ homes to serve as convening points for Jewish life, Yael and her partner, Rabbi Avram Mlotek live in downtown Manhattan with their two delicious children, Ravi and Hillel.
Rabbi Avram Mlotek is the co-founder of Base Hillel and serves as rabbi for its DWTN location. Mlotek graduated cum laude from Brandeis University and has studied at Sarah Lawrence College, Yeshiva University’s Cantorial School, Jewish Theological Seminary, and City College’s Educational Theatre department. A native Yiddish speaker, Mlotek’s Yiddish cultural work has brought him to China, Ethiopia, Israel, Sweden and Australia. Prior to joining Base, Avram served as a rabbi in training at The Carlebach Shul, The Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, and Hunter College Hillel. Mlotek’s writing has appeared in The Forward, Tablet, Haaretz, The Jerusalem Post, The Jewish Week, The Huffington Post and Kveller, among other blogs. The NY Jewish Week selected him as a “leading innovator in Jewish life today” as part of their “36 Under 36”, and he was listed as one of America’s “Most Inspiring Rabbis” by The Jewish Daily Forward. He is blessedly married to Yael Kornfeld, a geriatric social worker, and proud Tati to Revaya and Hillel Yosl.
Shoshana Jedwab is a prize-winning Jewish educator and the Jewish Studies Coordinator at the A.J. Heschel Middle School in New York City. She is the founding facilitator of the Makom Drum Circle at the JCC in Manhattan and is a percussionist and performance artist who has trained in bibliodrama and psychodrama. Shoshana has provided empowering drum circles to singles, student, training and bereavement groups. Shoshana has performed with Storahtelling, Chana Rothman, Debbie Friedman, Akiva Wharton, A Song of Solomon, Hebrew Mystical Chant with the Kirtan Rabbi Andrew Hahn, and seasonal events. She is Kohenet’s ritual drummer and also serves on the Kohenet faculty.
Shir Yaakov Feit is a singer, composer, designer, producer, teacher and Aba. He, his partner Emily, and their two daughters live in New York’s Hudson Valley, where they are helping to weave the Kol Hai community. Shir Yaakov has recorded and released four albums of original music and co-founded and performs with The Darshan Project. His song “Broken-hearted” recently won the Jewish Daily Forward’s 2016 Soundtrack of Our Spirit songwriting contest. Professionally, Shir Yaakov has served as Creative and Music Director for Romemu, New York City’s largest Renewal synagogue; Director of Engagement at ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal; ritual consultant for Eden Village Camp; and visiting faculty at Hebrew College and the Academy for Jewish Religion-NY. He is a student in the Rabbinic and Spiritual Direction tracks of the ALEPH Ordination Program, a Wexner Graduate Fellow, and serves as a Spirit Holder on the Zen Peacemakers’ Bearing Witness Retreats in Auschwitz-Birkenau. shiryaakov.com
Eden Pearlstein (aka ePRHYME) is a recording, performing and ritual artist, author, and educator. As a founding member of The Darshan Project, along with Reb Shir Yaakov and Basya Schechter (Pharaoh’s Daughter), Eden’s work weaves together deep Jewish teaching and tradition with creative process in a form of musical midrash and contemporary pietistic poetry. Eden holds 2 Master’s Degrees from JTS, one in Experiential Education and the other in Jewish Thought and Philosophy.
Erin Leib Smokler is the Director of Spiritual Development and Internship Coordinator at Yeshivat Maharat, where she teaches Chassidut and Pastoral Torah. She earned her PhD and MA from the University of Chicago’s Committee on Social Thought, her BA from Harvard University, and studied in Drisha’s Scholars Circle. She previously served as Assistant Literary Editor of The New Republic magazine, and her writing has appeared there as well as in The New York Times Book Review, The Jerusalem Report, and The Jewish Week.
Dan Pelberg is a meditation practitioner and teacher with significant silent retreat experience, having learned and sat with Rabbis and teachers in Israel, India, and the United States. He has taught on college campuses, Jewish social groups, Hebrew schools, on retreats, and more. Dan is an alum of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies and Brandeis Collegiate Institute.
Sarah Chandler is a Brooklyn-based Jewish educator, artist, activist, and poet. She teaches, writes, and consults on issues related to Judaism, earth-based spiritual practice, the environment, mindfulness, food values, and farming. Ordained as a Kohenet (Hebrew Priestess) in 2015, she is studying as a shamanic healer apprentice at The Wisdom School of S.O.P.H.I.A and Kabbalistic imaginal dream work at The School of Images.
Linke Fligl is a queer Jewish chicken farm & cultural organizing project that uses farming and gathering to grow a Jewish culture aligned with values of diasporism, anti-oppression and dreaming the world to come. The Linke Fligl team in partnership with Jews for Racial and Economics Justice is excited to hold down an all night study of the Vision for Black Lives platform.
Arielle Aronoff came to Hazon first as a Teva educator. She found a place in this community and did not want to leave. After spending the fall and winter at Isabella Freedman, she took a seasonal outdoor education position for the spring and quickly returned to be manage Camp Teva prior to her current role as Director of Teva. Before coming to Hazon, Arielle worked as a farmer, baker, and healthy school food advocate/educator. Arielle spends her time hiking, baking sourdough bread, and foraging for berries and mushrooms.
Isaiah Rothstein serves as the Rabbi-in-residence for Hazon. Growing up in a multi-racial-Chabad-family in Monsey, NY, Isaiah is pulled towards building platforms for Jews of all backgrounds to celebrate their identities and affinities–together–with the rest of community. Isaiah received rabbinic ordination and master of social work from Yeshiva University’s RIETS and Wurzweiler School of Social Work. During his spare time, Isaiah enjoys bringing movement to strings, things, and people–wherever the air flows (he told us, to tell you, to ask him, what he means by that). Isaiah currently lives in Brooklyn, NY with his two awesome roommates.
As the Director of Retreats at Isabella Freedman, Jess Berlin leads the talented Retreats team who produce and host over 70 events each year. Jess is a strong believer in the power of multi-day immersive experiences as a tool for creating long-lasting positive change in a person’s life. She has a lifelong passion for Judaism and spirituality, having spent four years studying and teaching in Israel as well several months studying meditation in India. After graduating from Queens College, with a degree in Urban Planning, she served as a key administrator at American Jewish World Service and AVODAH and a farm educator at Eden Village Camp. Jess enjoys being part of two meditation communities, practicing and teaching visualization techniques, rockhounding, and caring for her cast iron cookware.
Eli Weinbach is the Retreat Coordinator at Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center. Prior to joining Hazon, he worked as a Research Associate for Haskins Laboratories, a research institution affiliated with Yale University. He attended Yeshiva University where he studied Psychology. In his spare time Eli enjoys reading, listening to music, and adventuring.
Parents, you can relax into the retreat, knowing that your children are playing and learning with exceptional Jewish experiential educators. We have an engaging, thoughtful, and fun program planned for children ages 5-12. Children under the age of 5 are welcome to participate with an adult.
Gan Adamah is for children ages 2-4. Parents/guardians can choose to drop off their children or stay with them.