The Village for Families with Young Children

Home Youth & Family Engagement The Village for Families with Young Children

The Village is our place for families with young children (ages 0 – 5) to joyfully celebrate Jewish life, while meeting new friends and having fun together. Throughout the year we create a variety of opportunities to help connect families with one another. Here at the Village, there is something for everyone! Come experience TGIS (Thank Goodness it’s Shabbat), held in our spacious garden and playground. Take part in one of our festive Havdalah-themed events or holiday block parties.

All are welcome at Village gatherings: Temple Israel members, non-members, interfaith families, partnered, adopting, or single parents, LGBTQ+ parents, Black Jews, White Jews, and Jews of color. Come check us out!

We are happy to validate your parking if you park at the lot located at 375 Longwood Avenue.

What We Offer

TGIS: Thank Goodness It’s Shabbat

TGIS is a livelyand interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 5 days and 5 years. Led by beloved local musician Wayne Potash and the Temple Israel clergy, TGIS includes dancing, singing, playing, and praying. On the first, third, and fifth Saturdays of the month, we meet onsite at Temple Israel, and if the weather allows we gather outside in the garden. Come enjoy bagels, cream cheese, and Shabbat challah.

Havdalah Themed Family Events

We love coming together for Havdalah! From challah making to playground meetups, to pajama parties, and more, we offer multiple ways to connect.

Holiday Celebrations

The Village joyfully celebrates Jewish holidays as they occur, with music, crafts, puppetry, prayer, and more. You will always find a member of our clergy at Village events.

Shabbat Mishpachah

Come to Family Shabbat at Temple Israel. We start with a taco bar followed by services. During the service, the kids will join the education staff for an ice-cream sundae bar and games. Babysitting is provided for kids 3 and under. Questions? Contact Roberta Axeloons.

Rainbow Room Playspace

Families are welcome to bring their children ages 0 – 3 to the Rainbow Room (Room 105). We have puzzles, a dollhouse, blocks, and more. Diapers and snacks are also available. Arrange a Rainbow Room playdate with your child’s friends! Feel free to drop by the Rainbow Room whenever Temple Israel is open.

What We're Hearing

Phyllis G.

“My grandson loves singing with Wayne Potash at Thank Goodness It's Shabbat. He lights up whenever he sees Wayne, and loves the added treat of playground time when TGIS concludes. We have developed many lasting friendships thanks to the Village.”

Liat B.

“We are constantly looking for ways to encourage our daughters to experience Jewish tradition and holidays. Our family's highlight was the Village Chanukah celebration, and seeing the kids dance and sing Chanukah songs, hunting for dreidels, and enjoying Chanukah treats.”

Ilana S.

“The Village provides our family with a relaxed synagogue experience where our now 4-year-old can be himself, and learn and thrive in a warm, welcoming atmosphere. The best Shabbats are when our little guy can sing and dance along with the rabbis at TGIS!”

Avery V.

"From the energizing and fun Shabbat services, to the magical Passover Seder, to the engaging outdoor puppet shows, the Village events are truly the best. We feel blessed to be able to build on our children’s foundation in Jewish faith, culture, and tradition.“

Upcoming Events


Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

August 3, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

August 17, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

August 31, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Welcome Back Concert with Evan Haller

Date

September 1, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM EDT

Evan Haller from Music at the Blissful will perform a fun and interactive show for families with young children.  There will be lots of dancing and ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

September 7, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

September 21, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Village Picture Day

Date

September 22, 2024

Time

2:00 PM - 6:00 PM EDT

Photographer Becky MacDonald from Pretty Nerdy Photography will take free portraits of our Village families.  Refreshments will be served, and th...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

October 5, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

October 19, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

November 2, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

November 16, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

November 30, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

December 7, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

December 21, 2024

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

January 4, 2025

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

January 18, 2025

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

February 1, 2025

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

February 15, 2025

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

March 1, 2025

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

Thank Goodness It's Shabbat! - at TI

Date

March 15, 2025

Time

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EDT

TGIS is a joyful and interactive service that meets on select Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. for anyone between the ages of 6 days and 6 years. ...

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Want to learn more? 

Contact Village Coordinator Heidi Smith Hyde