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Affinity Groups

Fall 2023/Winter 2024 New 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: Join us for a creative and fun filled afternoon of knitting and/or crocheting. Feel free to bring projects that you are currently working on. We will also discuss ideas for possible group projects. We are happy to teach those who are new to either knitting or crochet! We are planning to meet in the outdoor space between the Sanctuary and the Administrative Buildings
    on the first Sunday of each month. Register now and join us on Nov 5th! For more information, please reach out to Elyse or Beth.
  • Mahj Jong: Have you ever wondered how to play American Jewish Mahj Jong? It's so fun! Both seasoned and brand-new players are encouraged to join for a fun time together. This affinity group will be led by Carol Gutstein.
  • Whiskey: This is for anyone who enjoys 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 whisky, 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
  • 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.  Participants will share recipes, contribute ingredients and learn from one another. Led by Andrea Katz. We'll meet in the Shir Hadash kitchen or at a member's home. For anyone age 18 and older.
  • 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! Every other Sunday starting at 10:30am. Led by Mitchell Wunsh, for anyone age 18 and older.
  • Dinner with Friends: Up your cooking chops and gather with friends old and new! Monthly host will determine a theme (international, seasonal, etc.) and provide the main entrée. The other members will fill in the rest of the menu… and bring wine! Led by the Altmans.
  • Gamer Fun! (Role Playing Games - like Dungeons & Dragons, and tabletop geeky boardgames): 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! Have a complicated and fun geeky game you've been wanting to crack open? Open to total novices to the RPG (role-playing-game) world, and also experienced players as well. Led by Max Johnson.


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
Tue, October 3 2023 18 Tishrei 5784