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Monday, February 05, 2007

Shabbat 1000

The smell of traditional Jewish foods will fill Carnegie Mellon’s Wiegand Gymnasium in the University Center on Friday as students, faculty, and other members of the Pittsburgh community gather for Shabbat 1000, an annual campus event held to celebrate the traditional Jewish day of rest. The program will provide a filling three-course meal for, organizers hope, 1000 participants. Attendees will be served traditional Shabbat foods such as gefilte fish, a variety of kugels, challah rolls, salads, desserts, and several vegetarian options.

“The atmosphere will be one of celebration, joy, and unity,” said Chani Weinstein, Pittsburgh’s Shabbat 1000 administrator. Several student groups from Carnegie Mellon, including Alpha Epsilon Pi, Zeta Beta Tau, Israel on Campus, and Tartans for Israel, have joined other groups in the Pittsburgh area to help in the planning, promotion, and implementation of the event.

Shabbat 1000 is a national event started 12 years ago by Rivka Slonim, co-director of the Chabad House at the State University of New York at Binghamton. Cornell University, Harvard University, Pennsylvania State University, and the University of Texas are just a few of the universities that have brought the Shabbat 1000 tradition to their own campuses.

“This unique campus event offers students an opportunity to meet and connect with others and to share in the traditional celebration of Shabbat — something special beyond their weekly routine,” Weinstein said. “The actual event is very inspiring to see so many students celebrating Shabbat and eating a delicious meal all together.”

Pittsburgh’s Shabbat 1000 is coordinated by Chabad House on Campus and the Hillel Jewish University Center of Pittsburgh. This year’s event is dedicated to the memory of the late mayor of Pittsburgh, Bob O’Connor.

Dinner is free and open to everyone, Jewish and non-Jewish alike.

Today is the last day for students to sign up on the event’s website, (www.shabbat1000.net). Participants can either sign up to host a table of 10 people, or sign up as an individual to be placed at a table of 10 by the event’s organizers.

Shabbat 1000 will take place Friday, February 9 at 5 p.m. in the Wiegand Gymnasium.

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