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Affinity Groups

Fall 2023/Winter 2024 Groups!

We're thrilled to be starting up a new set of affinity groups - find one below that interests you and then register right away to join the fun!

  • Knitting: Creative and fun-filled afternoons of knitting and/or crocheting! Bring projects you are currently working on or suggest ideas for possible group projects. We are happy to teach those who are new to either knitting or crochet! We'll meet outdoors at Shir Hadash. Sign up to join!
    • First four dates are: Nov 5th, Dec 3rd, Jan 7th, and Feb 4th! All are 1pm to 3pm.
  • Mah Jongg: Have you ever wondered how to play American Jewish Mah Jongg? Learn something new and connect with new friends! Both seasoned and brand-new players are welcome to join for a fun time playing Mah Jongg together. This affinity group will be led by Carol Gutstein. Sign up to join!
    • First four dates: Info coming soon.
  • Whiskey: Do you enjoy whiskey-tasting and socializing?! Every other Wednesday in the home of an affinity group member, two of the group members will volunteer to bring a different type of whiskey, bourbon, scotch, or other special beverage for the group to sample and try as they chat! Only for members age 21 and older, led by Matt Newton. Sign up to join!
    • First four dates: Info coming soon.
  • Baking: Let's gather together to bake - in order to stock the freezer at Shir Hadash for Oneg, as well as take home a sampling of goodies for ourselves. Share recipes, contribute ingredients and learn from one another. Led by Andrea Katz. Held in Shir Hadash kitchen or at a member's home. For anyone age 18+. Sign up to join!
    • First four dates are: Nov 7th, Dec 5th, Jan 9th, and Feb 6th. All are 6pm to 8pm.
  • Walking: Let’s walk and schmooze - bring water or coffee (and we’ll probably build in a stop to grab coffee for the road for those who may be empty handed) - the open roads of Los Gatos are ours to conquer! Held every other Sunday starting at 10:30am. Led by Mitchell Wunsh, for anyone age 18+.  Sign up to join!
    • First group dates: Oct 22nd, Nov 5th, Nov 12th, walking from Shir Hadash at 10:30am.
  • Dinner with Friends: Freilach Food, Flights, and Friendship: First dinner will be at the Altman’s home, then we will rotate hosts. We will determine dates and menu ideas at this first meeting. Potluck, international, regional food are all possibilities – the fun and friendship (did we mention wine?) will be the result. Sign up to join!
    • First group dates: Nov 4th, Dec 16th, Jan 13th
  • Intermediate/Advanced Tennis: Adult tennis players (age 18 and older). Let’s play tennis!  Intermediate or Advanced players who want to play doubles can join together for games on Sunday mornings. We’ll play at Blossom Hill Park, Los Gatos on (2) courts. Bring your own water bottle and a new can of tennis balls.  There are restrooms and free parking at the park. 8am-9am, bi-monthly. Led by Julia Sandelman. Sign up to join!
    • First group dates: Oct 15th and 29th, Nov 12th and 26th, Dec 17th, Jan 7th.
  • Gamers Gather (Role Playing Games - like Dungeons & Dragons, and geeky board games): Does the idea of a group-imagination game where you pretend to be a fantasy or sci-fi character and go on interesting adventures sound like a blast to you? Then maybe role-playing games would be good to try! Open to total novices to the RPG (role-playing-game) world, and also experienced players as well. Led by Max Johnson. Sign up to join!

    • Twice a month for two months: This "mini affinity group" is a low-stress commitment to join and play together four times.

About

Affinity Groups (AGs) are regular gatherings of 8-12 members in people’s homes, offices and other places that promote relationship building.  They are led by Group Leaders.  Some AGs connect around common interests and other groups gather to discuss topics of deep concern or importance to the lives of the participants.  
 
The idea to create the AGs developed directly out of listening to the needs of our members. Sometimes, we need the anonymity of our robust communal events.  Other times, we desire smaller settings in which to grow and share in the experience of being a Jew.  In truth, we need both the large and small gathering moments: to pray, celebrate and learn from our tradition AND to experience Jewish values in personal and relatable smaller settings, where we are seen for who we are, and where see others for who they are.
 
Small groups are not new to Shir Hadash: over the years we have had Havurot, Torah Study, Choir, Men’s Club, Sisterhood and much more.  What is new, however, is the structure and shared responsibility that we all shoulder in creating a more substantive web of relationships that make up our community and combine to create the Jewish world we hope to see for our future.  Therefore, the AGs become the intentional connections that we are making in order to inspire each other and transform ourselves and our world.

Basics of Affinity Groups

  • Topic-focused groups (gardening, cycling, crafts, hobbies, games, cooking, etc)
  • Meet once a month, for six months
  • Small groups of 12 or fewer people
Sun, March 3 2024 23 Adar I 5784