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Jewish Journal

Seder With a Twist

by Wendy J. Madnick

April 10, 2003 | 8:00 pm

So you're bored to tears by the "Maxwell House Haggadah," or the family seder this year just won't do enough to quell your addiction to charoset. Fortunately for you, there are a number of interesting twists on the traditional seder being hosted around town to satisfy almost every palate, from the serious to the playful.

Probably the tastiest event on the list is that of Ventura County Jewish Council-Temple Beth Torah, whose 40s and 50s singles group is hosting an All-Chocolate Seder on Saturday, April 19 at 7 p.m. $7.50. 7620 Foothill Road, Ventura. To R.S.V.P., call (805) 647-4181.

A more realistic experience of the Exodus will play out at Malibu Creek State Park over the weekend of April 18-20. Seder in the Wilderness, hosted by Congregation Or Ami, replicates the Jewish experience in the desert through singing, campfires and a Shabbat service. $25 (adults 13 and up), $15 (6-12) free (under 6). Parking is $5. To R.S.V.P., call (818) 222-4922.

Passover was the first in many partings between the Jewish people and other nations, but members of Temple Kol Tikvah are seizing the moment to change that symbolism on Friday, April 11 at 8 p.m. with a Muslim-Jewish Passover seder called "Breaking the Silence: a Passover Celebration Seeking Peace and Reconciliation." Hosted by Rabbi Steven Jacobs and Nazir Khaja of the Islamic Information Service in Los Angeles, the seder is modeled on the theme of Abraham's children, with a haggadah specially written to stress reconciliation between Muslims and Jews. $35. 20400 Ventura Blvd., Woodland Hills. To R.S.V.P., call (818) 348-0670.

For those who prefer a Yiddish dish with a pinch of the socially progressive, the Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ring of Southern California hosts their annual seder. The mostly English program with songs in Yiddish and Hebrew includes stories of the Marranos, the hidden Jews of Spain; the martyrs and heroes of the Polish ghettos, the Jews of the former Soviet Union and "the seekers of peace in Israel." Sunday, April 20 at 1 p.m. $32 (members), $38 (nonmembers). 1525 Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles. To R.S.V.P., call (310) 552-2007.

Feminists needing a boost can look to Leo Baeck's third annual women-only seder, which explores the Passover journey to freedom from a female perspective. The service will be led by student rabbi Elisa Kukla and cantorial soloist Molly Wine. April 20, at 5:30 p.m. $18 (members), $20 (nonmembers). 1300 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. To R.S.V.P., call (310) 476-2861. Â

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