Join us for our Community Seder

2nd Night - Saturday, April 20th. 6:30 - 9:30 PM

Congregation Nahalat Shalom will host a Seder on  the second night of Passover. It begins at 6:30 pm, and will be led by Cantor Beth Cohen along with the Community Klezmer Band and Rikud Dancers, Judy Brown, Stephanie Cohen and Batya Podos.

We do not charge for our seder - we do it the way do mostly everything - sharing our food and our company at a potluck.

Guest Speakers and Adopt a Shelter Project

And this year, when we tell the story of our people walking away from oppression to freedom, we will have two special guests who will tell us stories from their own experiences of helping the asylum seekers - what we Jews were when we left Egypt. Jessica Corley has led Congregation Albert's effort to "take a bus" of 50 asylum seekers every few weeks. Nahalat Shalom has joined with Congregation Albert's effort by providing food each time for 50 people for four days. Thank you to Kathryn Karnowsky for leading our Nahalat Shalom volunteers! Jessica will share with us stories of the heroic journeys these families have undertaken to reach freedom - what Pesach is all about. Our other guest is Sayrah Namaste who has been collecting supplies for the overwhelmed shelters in Las Cruces and El Paso for many months. Nahalat Shalom has joined the "Adopt-A-Shelter" project by collected desperately needed items for these shelters during April. Please bring the items below to the Community Seder, or drop them off at the office. We will send the supplies at the end of the month.

What to bring to a Kosher-for-Passover vegetarian potluck

Nahalat Shalom's community Seder is a kosher-for-Passover vegetarian/pescatarian potluck dinner. Please label your food items as either Ashkenazi or Sephardi.  Bring your own ritual items (or arrange to sit with friends and share). For instance, you may want to bring a seder plate, charoset, hardboiled egg, roasted beet (instead of a shank bone), parsley, bitter herb and matzah. 

The synagogue will provide haggadot, table cloths, paper goods and cutlery. (Eco-kashrut alternative is to bring a washable place setting from home for your own use). Each table will be pre-set with a bowl of salt water and kosher for Pesach grape juice. If you would like wine, please bring your own.

If you have a camera and could bring it and take pictures to share for our website and Facebook page, that would be most appreciated!!

Children are totally and completely welcome. We will search for the afikomen after the meal and every child will receive a small gift, and there will be a special gift for the child who finds the afikomen.


What’s the difference between Ashkenazic and Sephardic food that is kosher for Passover??

Our Community Seder is vegetarian/pescatarian. There are different cultural groups within Judaism and they have different traditions around food for Passover. Some of us follow the Ashkenazic traditions [Germanic, Eastern European, Russian] and some of us follow the Sephardic traditions [Spanish families that were evicted from Spain in 1492].

No matter where your family came from, everyone enjoys fresh fruits and vegetables, eggs and dairy products during Passover. We avoid any foods that have leavening [yeast] or corn syrup in them, as well as those that are made from wheat [except kosher for Passover Matzah, matzah meal, etc.]. We also avoid anything made from barley, oats, spelt and rye. In practical terms, that means that we don’t eat processed foods, bread, pasta, cakes, cookies, biscuits, crackers or cereal unless they are specifically made to be eaten on Passover and the package is marked “Kosher for Passover”. In addition to these grains forbidden by both groups, Ashkenazi Jews also refrain from eating rice, corn [corn starch, corn syrup], millet, beans, soybeans and legumes, during Passover, while Sephardi Jews do eat them.

The Ashkenazi communities prohibit the use of rice, corn [corn syrup, corn starch], millet, buckwheat and beans, soybeans and soy products, and legumes, including peas and lima beans during Passover.

Please Label Your Food Items

In order to make it as comfortable as possible for everyone sharing in the potluck offerings, we ask that you bring a label that states whether your contribution follows the “Ashkenazic” or “Sephardic” traditions. As a courtesy to those who do not eat either fish or dairy, please label those items as well. Thank you for being mindful of the concerns of the members and guests of our community. 

Need some ideas?   See our Passover Recipes document.