Second Astoria shabbaton to feature Rabbi Alan Berg
By Jewish Review
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Last February’s inaugural Weekend in Quest shabbaton presented in Astoria by Portland’s Institute for Judaic Studies and which featured Reed College Judaic Studies Prof. Steven Wasserstrom, was such a success that another is planned for next February, again in Astoria.
This time the event will be presented with the cooperation of three large Portland Jewish congregations: Beth Israel, Neveh Shalom and Havurah Shalom.
Rabbi Alan Berg, known to longtime Portlanders as a former associate rabbi at Congregation Beth Israel and the first rabbi at Havurah Shalom, will be the featured guest.
Back in Portland after 26 years, Berg will lead an extended celebration of the Jewish musical voice.
Participants will make a spiritual journey that begins with study of the psalms before moving on to examine George Gershwin’s revolutionary jazz opera “Porgy and Bess,” the melodies and poetic words of singer-songwriter Paul Simon—winner of the Library of Congress’ first Gershwin Prize for Popular Song—and the music and times of Jeffrey Klepper and Debbie Friedman, two of the most influential Jewish musicians at work today.
Since departing Portland in 1981, Berg has served as senior rabbi at Temple Anshe Amunim in Pittsfield, Mass., and Peninsula Temple Beth El in San Mateo, Calif.
He also has served as instructor in Medical Ethics at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, chaplain and teacher at Williams College, and has taught at Notre Dame de Namur University and Portland State University.
When still in Oregon, Berg also was chaplain for Jewish prisoners at the Oregon State Penitentiary and a columnist for Willamette Week where he wrote about music and books.
The Weekend in Quest runs from Friday evening Feb. 22 to noon on Sunday, Feb. 24 at the Holiday Inn Express on the edge of the Columbia River near the towering main span of the Astoria-Megler Bridge.
Overnight guests at the Holiday Inn will have a river-view room. There will be Shabbat services on site led by Rabbi Joshua Stampfer and Rabbi Daniel Isaak, and time for walks, relaxation and exploration of historic Astoria, which has experienced a rebirth as a richly colorful escape destination with several fine restaurants, interesting shops and top-flight art galleries.
Accommodations are $210 per person, double occupancy and $320 per person, single occupancy. Hotel guests will be served five meals. Those who can sleep off-site can attend all programming and take three meals (no breakfasts) at the Holiday Inn for $120.
For more information call Barb Schwartz at 503-221-0619.