Meditative Jewish Heritage Study Program &Tour of the Czech Republic-Poland May 2015‏

Rabbi Olivier BenHaim and Dr. Gerardo Ojeda-Ebert will be leading an intimate group on an amazing journey: a study program that will culminate with a trip to the Czech Republic and Poland.

Prague Round HomeWarsaw Old CityKazimierz MuralA Study Program…

A series of books, meetings, classes, and movie nights here in Seattle, will help to prepare participants for this once-in-a-lifetime event. The full plan of activities and details about the trip itself will be sent to you once you have secured your spot.

 

Led by two fabulous facilitators…

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Dr. Gerardo Ojeda-Ebert. His full biography is available here.

 

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Rabbi Olivier BenHaim, read his biography here.

 

Culminating in an Unforgettable Tour of Eastern Europe…

All dates are for 2015

May 14 – Arrival of participants in Prague

May 15-16 – Tour of Prague including Jewish quarters

Auschwitz Arbeit Macht Frei

May 17 – Tour of Terezin Concentration Camp

May 18-19 – Auschwitz-Birkenau visitand meditation

May 20 – Tour of Krakow; Old Town, Jewish district & Schindler’s factory

May 21-23 – Tour of Warsaw, Old City, and Jewish sites

Lodz Poznansky Palace

May 24 – Visit and meditation session in Treblinka Extermination Camp.

May 25 – Free day in Warsaw & evening drinks with local renowned Jewish artist Margalit Krasucka.

May 26 – Travel and tour of Lodz (including oldest Jewish cemetery in Europe)

May 27 – Departure Day

Prague Pink SynagogueIn Prague we will see, among other things, the Spanish, Maisel, Pinkas and Klausen Synagogues, documents and artifacts that represent 1,000 years of Jewish history, the famous Old Jewish Cemetery; and the Old-New Synagogue (the Altneuschul), Europe’s oldest surviving synagogue.

Prague at Night

In Krakow we will be visiting the prime pearls of the city’s architecture and history: the Royal Route with its churches from 11th to 18th century; the Market Square and the Cloth Hall building; the Jagiellonian University established in 1364, Wawel Castle and its two royal courtyards and Cathedral, as well as the site of the first Jewish kehilah in Krakow. Of course we will tour the Jewish Quarters (Kazimierz) as well.

Kazimierz Shops

In Warsaw, among many other sites, we will be highlighting the Jewish Historical Institute, Nuzhik Synagogue, Okopowa Jewish Cemetery, Umzslagplatz, Monument to Warsaw Ghetto Fighters, the Museum of Polish Jews and the Museum of Polish resistance.

Warsaw Mermaid

In all, our aim is to present more than just the Jewish story of the tragedy of the Shoah/Holocaust (though we’ll do that, too). We intend to show and celebrate the many expressions of a thousand years of Jewish life in that part of the world, past and present. Our goal is to meet as many local Jewish communities and personalities as possible to get a sense of what Jewish life looks like as it slowly comes back to the streets of Poland a generation after the Holocaust and the post WWII Stalinist regime experience.

Travel agencies organizing the tour portion of the Study Program are Wittmann Tours in Prague for the Czech Republic portion of the tour and Mazurkas Travels in Warsaw for your time in Poland.

Auschwitz_Train Tracks

So, how much does this most amazing trip cost?

Note: The price quoted below is only for the ground part of the trip and does not include airfare. Each participant needs to book and pay separately his/her airfare to and from Europe. We also require each participant to purchase his/her own Travel & Medical Insurance for the trip.

Tour Cost:

– $3,800 per person in double room hotel accommodations.

– $4800 per person in single room hotel accommodations (only one left available).

This package price includes all hotel rooms, all breakfasts, bus & train transportation during the tour, all museum entrance tickets and guides. It also includes all activities with local Jewish organizations, as well as the two Shabbat services in Prague and Warsaw. Several group meals have also been included beyond the daily breakfasts. We are especially asking that all participants commit to take part in all Study Tour group activities and do not organize separate individual activities when group activities are scheduled.

The hotels we will be staying at are as follow:

Hotel Amarilis in Prague

Hotel Galicja in Oswiecim (Auschwitz)

Holiday Inn in Krakow

Hotal Sofitel Victoria in Warsaw

How to register:

Please e-mail Rachel@betalef.org, and mail a $500 check to Bet Alef Meditative Synagogue (write Czech-Poland Study Program on the memo line please) 1111 Harvard Ave, Seattle 98122 to reserve your spot. You can also call the office at (206)527-9399 and make your $500 deposit via credit card. The Bet Alef office will be more than happy to work with you on a payment plan to pay for the reminder of the costs after that, if needed.

We require that full costs of the trip be paid no later than March 31st, 2015.

Once all 24 seats have been filled we will open a waiting list.

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