How about a trip to outer space for Purim? Or back to the shetl?

Local Chabads plan special themes for annual festival

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  • Perry Birn, Emma Toms, Zalmen and Zushi Borenstein of Chabad Hebrew School in Goshen have some Purim fun. It is traditional to wear dress up or wear masks on Purim (Photo provided by Rabbi Meir Borenstein)

  • The Amazing Bottle Dancers will entertain at the "Purim in the Shtetl" party hosted by Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston (Photo provided)

  • Jojo Birn and Zushi Borenstein make hamentashen at Chabad Hebrew School in Goshen (Photo provided by Rabbi Meir Borenstein)

  • Chana Burston of Chabad of Orange County leads a Hamantaschen Baking workshop and is pictured (left) with Heather Greenberg of Monroe, holding her oven-ready cookies. (Photo provided)

  • Rivkie Borenstein, Leslie Roosa and Adrienne Butvinik joined more than 35 women baking hamentashen from scratch at the Jewish Women Circle held in Goshen (Photo provided by Rabbi Meir Borenstein)

  • Stacey Finkelstein of Middletown, Chana Burston of Monroe and Sheryl Kerewski of Goshen enjoy baking Hamantaschen together (Photo provided by Rabbi Pesach Burston)

  • Rivkie Borenstein and Karyn Eckus bake hamentashen from scratch at the Jewish Women Circle held in Goshen (Photo provided by Meir Borenstein)

  • Rabbi Pesach Burston, director of Chabad of Orange County, photo-bombs a picture taken at last year at the "Purim in India" community party (Photo provided by Rabbi Pesach Burston)

Celebration of salvation

The holiday of Purim celebrates the salvation of the Jewish people living in the fourth century from Haman’s plot to annihilate the entire Jewish nation.
It is observed by public readings of the Megillah (or Scroll of Esther), sending food to friends (knows as “mishloach manot”), giving gifts of money to the poor and enjoying a festive meal.
A time-honored Purim custom is to dress up and disguise oneself — an allusion to the fact that the miracle of Purim was disguised in natural garments.
This is also the significance behind a traditional Purim food, the “hamantash” — a pastry whose filling is hidden within a three-cornered crust.

— Purim is coming, one of the most joyous and fun holidays on the Jewish calendar. Two local Chabads are planning parties with themes to delight the young and old alike.

Chabad Center of Orange County, directed by Rabbi Meir and Rivkie Borenstein, will host a party for all ages at the Goshen Senior Center, 100 Trotter Circle, Goshen, as it has for the past 13 years, each year with a different theme. This year's party will be held at 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 12, with a "Purim in Outer Space" theme featuring dinner space cuisine and an out-of-this world mindreader with crafts and games for kids. Come in costume!

For more information or to make a reservation, email or visit

Chabad of Orange County, directed by Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston, will offer The Amazing Bottle Dancers in a special performance at its upcoming "Shetl Grand Community Party" at noon on Sunday, March 12, at the American Legion Hall, 532 Lakes Rd., Monroe.

The party will offer an array of foods, entertainment, interactive Megillah reading, and fun for all ages.

“This event promises to be unique in that we will be enjoying the community warmth, tastes and style of the Shetl right here in Orange County,” said Chana Burston. “Think 'Fiddler on the Roof' feel, with famous entertainers creating the perfect atmosphere.”

Chabad is also hosting a Megillah reading, with refreshments and traditional Hamantaschen, at 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 11, at Chabad’s Monroe-Chester Center, 1170 Route 17M, Suite 1 (upper level parking lot) in Chester.

It’s a mitzvah (commandment) to hear the Megillah read twice, once on Purim eve and again on Purim day.

For more information or to RSVP, contact Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston at 782-2770, write or log onto

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