A can’t-miss event. That’s what our SF ’08 Shabbaton reunion felt like this past weekend, as we came together in Sonoma for the sixth year in a row to rest, relax and study together. Nearly 90 percent of our class was present, with spouses (who have long been integrated as part of the group) and children (who are now friends). Those who couldn’t be there had excellent reasons: living far away (Australia) or a family event scheduled on the same date. The rest of us made the journey from all over the Bay Area to relax, reconnect and study together with guest educator Rabbi David Kasher, senior rabbinic educator at Kevah. We had much to celebrate this year ​— one of us got married, another brought her beautiful new baby, the other is expecting his first child (and here we were, thinking that all our kids were all “getting older” so quickly). For the first time, our teens joined our “poolside” session — focused on BDS on college campuses, led by Dr. Marc Dollinger who teaches Jewish Studies at San Francisco State University — and took on planning responsibilities for next year’s Shabbaton (already booked!). As usual, we had much to talk about, including our diverse lay leadership projects, ideas and challenges, and the weekend flew by. Though many of us see each other throughout the year, the Shabbaton has become “sacred time” intentionally set aside to honor our commitment to each other, our children’s own developing relationships and the continuation of our post-Wexner journey. 

In the spirit of sharing best practices across the network, we offer our schedule here and are also happy to field any questions in case you want to organize your own gathering.

Wexner SF 08 Fifth Annual Shabbaton-May 8-10, 2015
Mayacamas Ranch, Calistoga

Friday, May 8
3:00-6:00pm:  Arrival and Check-In

7:00pm-8:30pm:  Shabbat prayers led by Daccarett/Bernstein Family & Dinner (Chaparral Lodge)

8:30pm-10:00pm:  Movies for kids (Rock Rose Center); free time; bedtime

9:00pm-10:00pm:  Evening session with Rabbi David Kasher: Faith & Doubt 1 (Chaparral Lodge)

Saturday, May 9
7:30-9:00am:  Breakfast (Chaparral Lodge)

9:00-10:30am:  Family Tefillah organized by David Langer (meet in Sunrise Garden behind Chaparral Lodge)

10:30am-12:00pm: Morning Session with Rabbi David Kasher: Faith & Doubt 2 (Chaparral Lodge)

10:30am-12:00pm: Kids:  Free time (art and games in Rock Rose Center or on field)

11:00am-12:00pm:  Pool open for kids with Lifeguard (adults will be in the teaching session.)

12:00pm-1:30pm:  Lunch (Chaparral Lodge)

1:00pm-2:00pm: Yoga (Sunset Meadow weather permitting; pick up yoga mats, blocks, straps on porch of Chaparral Lodge); arranged by Victoria Treyger. Approximately $35-$40 per person.  The more people join, the lower the price!

1:30pm-4:30pm:  Family Free time (hanging out, swimming, hiking, canoeing.)  Lifeguard at the pool.

3:30pm-4:15pm: “BDS: Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions” discussion led by Professor Marc Dollinger (poolside) *Children ages 13 and older are welcome per parent discretion.


4:30pm-6:00pm:  Afternoon session with Rabbi David Kasher: Faith & Doubt 3 (Chaparral Lodge)

4:30pm-6:00pm:  Kids:  Free time (art and games in Rock Rose Center or on field); swimming with lifeguard until 5:30pm.

5:30pm:  Pool closed.

6:15pm-7:30pm:  Dinner (Chaparral Lodge)

7:45pm-9:00pm:  Havdallah led by Bader Family, campfire, s’mores organized by Meredith Goldsmith and singing led by Sonia Daccarett, Jamie Dubey, & Tricia Gibbs (Sunrise Garden)

9:00pm-10:00pm:  Kids movies (Rock Rose Center)

Sunday, May 10
7:30am-8:45am:  Breakfast  (Note that you need to Check out by 11:00am.)

9:00am-11:00am:  “What’s happening in your life?” Group Check-In for all shabbaton attendees, guests, spouses, significant others (Chaparral Lodge)

9:00am-11:00am:  Kids: Free time (art and games in Rock Rose Center or on field)

10:30am-11:00am:  Check out

11:30am-12:30pm:  Lunch


Sonia Daccarett (Wexner SF ’08) is a communications consultant. She and her husband, Alex Bernstein, live in San Francisco with their three children. She can be reached at sdaccarett@gmail.com