The sixth annual Maine Conference for Jewish Life will take place Friday, June 21, through Sunday, June 23, at Thomas College and in downtown Waterville. A program of the Center for Small Town Jewish Life, the conference will offer an opportunity to be part of the largest gathering in Maine devoted exclusively to Jewish learning, music, food, culture, and community. More than 200 people are expected to attend the learning and experiential sessions, according to a news release Center for Small Town Jewish Life at Colby College.

The conference will feature dozens of speakers, and opportunities for learning and community building.

Registration options*

Full conference, with housing ($230), June 21-23, including on-campus housing for both nights

Full conference, no housing ($150), June 21-23, no on-campus housing

Half conference, with housing (Friday night) ($140) June 21-22, with one night of housing

Half conference, with housing (Saturday night) ($140), June 22-23, with one night of housing

Half conference, no housing (Friday/Saturday) ($100) June 21-22

Half conference, no housing (Saturday/Sunday) ($100) June 22-23

Single day registration, no housing — Friday ($50) June 21

Single day registration, no housing — Saturday ($50) June 22

Single day registration, no housing — Sunday ($50) June 23

Child (younger than 13) — housing needed ($10) for any number of days

Child (younger than 13) — no housing needed ($10) for any number of days

Registration fees increase on May 31, and housing is limited, so early registration is encouraged. For the full schedule of workshops and learning sessions and to register, go to colby.edu.

Kids’ and teen programming will be offered. The conference will include meals, music, and the option to choose from several Sabbath prayer services and hikes.

Some of this year’s highlights:
• Keynote speaker, Amir Tibon, Washington editor of the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz. Immediately after the 2014 Gaza War, Tibon and his wife Miri moved from Tel Aviv to the kibbutz of Nahal Oz, the closest place in Israel to Gaza City. In his talk on Friday evening, June 21, Tibon will talk about “Life on the Gaza Border,” discuss his own experiences, as well as the broader political and security contexts.
• For those who love a hands-on artistic experience, there will be Tallit Making at the Hathaway Center with two Maine artists. Participants will design their own one-of-a-kind silk tallit (prayer shawl) using pre-made silk scarves and fabric dye.

Additional sessions:
• Creating your own rituals
• Synagogue leadership and security
• A panel discussion on Maine conversion experiences
• Maine rabbis from across the state speaking on “My Favorite Text and Why in Ten Minutes”

The Center for Small Town Jewish Life at Colby College showcases how academic and community institutions can work together to improve the cultural life of small towns while enriching the education of college students.

For more information about the center and the conference, and to register for the entire weekend or any of the individual days, go to [email protected], or call 859-4271.

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