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Rosh Hashanah in the Rockies

The Adventure Judaism Rosh Hashanah in the Rockies was relaxing, releasing, and reviving.

153 participants gathered at Camp Granite Lake, 30-minutes from Boulder and Golden Colorado. They came from different parts of the country – Indiana, Florida, Virginia to name a few, and also from right here in Colorado.

The evening began with a delicious feast served by Chef Steve Grindley, complete with matzah ball soup and brisket.  Then we gathered for an inspiring and uplifting service led by Rabbi Jamie Korngold, with musical accompaniment by the accomplished Ari Sharfstein. After services, the vivid stars in the dark mountain sky did not disappoint, nor did s’mores over the fire.

In the morning, participants hiked along a forest trail, chatting and getting to know each other. We discussed the connection between nature and the Jewish new year, reminding ourselves of how nature can inspire us in the lessons of renewal, constancy, and connection. We had the treat of hearing the shofar from different spots in the forest, surrounding us in sound.

Tashlich at the lake, surrounded by yellow and orange aspens, was truly a gift.  Bathed in the silence, we felt invited to contemplate deeply and let go fervently.

And of course, hearing the Creation story, Bereshit, while holding the Torah in a circle did not disappoint.  How powerful it feels to stand in a community, shoulder to shoulder, holding the words of Torah! The moment connects us deeply to our shared past, to Jews all over the world today, and to the future. Our teens Marlin Kropp, Johnny Stanzione, and Ori Korngold did magnificently chanting from the Torah with ease and confidence, thanks to years of training by their fabulous teacher Elaine Barenblat.

We were sent off with a rousing Tekkiah Gedolah, sounded by Jonathan Ropa, Jenny Fuhrer, and Ori Korngold.  We wished we could tarry just a little longer in this oasis of golden aspen and community, but the time had come to go out into the world and be the people we had pledged to be, to continue our work of making this world a better place.

Click here to learn more about Adventure Judaism or to find out about their Yom Kippur offerings.

Photos by Andy Franklin

About Rabbi Jamie Korngold

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