Programs and Events

Here you are able to view information about programs and events at NSCI and in the community. Events are listed under catagories, in chronological order. Please scroll down to learn more about all of our exciting events and programs.

Special Events and Programs

NTFY In Israel Informational Meeting

Tuesday, December 12, 7:30 pm
NFTY in Israel is the adventure of a lifetime for teens. Join us for an outstanding opportunity to speak with Dan Lange, the URJ's Director of Youth Programs, and Rabbi Rich Kirschen, Director of NFTY in Israel, about how an Israel experience next summer will help your teen strengthen their Jewish identity and provide valuable skills that will serve them in college and beyond. For more information and to RSVP, please contact Rabbi Lisa Greene or Lisa Goosmann at 847-835-0724.

Exiled To Nowhere: Responding To Burma's Rohingya Crisis

Wednesday, December 13, 7:30 pm 
Please join us for an evening behind the lens with photojournalist Greg Constantine, who has documented the devastating mass murder and expulsion of Burma's Rohingya people. We'll learn about the roots of this crisis and what our community is doing to aid survivors and stop the bloodshed. This is a FREE event, and is open to the community - All are welcome. For more information, please contact Dena Weiss: [email protected]. Register online HERE.

Shabbat Chanukah Potluck Dinner

Friday, December 15 following services
Join your NSCI community for delicious Chanukah Potluck dinner! Roasted chicken and latkes with applesauce will be served while YOU supply a side dish or dessert for 10 guests* .

Last names beginning with A-M provide a side dish; last names beginning with N-Z provide a dessert. RSVP HERE by Friday, December 8 or by contacting Miriam at [email protected] or at 847-835-0724*Please no nuts in the dishes.

Cinema NSCI

Join fellow movie buffs for a film viewing. Each film will have a Jewish connection with a brief conversation led by Rabbi Geffen. Upcoming dates: Tuesday, December 19, 2017 at 11:30 am, Tuesday, February 6, 2018 at 11:30 am, Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at 11:30 am, Wednesday, June 6, 2018 at 7:00 pm. Open to the community. Light refreshments. RSVP’s encouraged to Susan, [email protected], 847-835- 0724. Please park in the north lot and enter thru the Education doors. We will meet in the Tross Family Education Center.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Shabbat

Friday, January 12, 2018 at 6:15 pm
Guest Preachers: Bishop Derrick Fitzpatrick and Pastor Reshorna Fitzpatrick of the Stone Temple Baptist Church, formerly the First Roumanian Synagogue. We are delighted to welcome Bishop and Pastor Fitzpatrick and their community back to NSCI for the Shabbat preceding Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Winter Farmers Market at NSCI

Sunday, January 28, 2018 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Each winter, Faith in Place partners with faith communities to host a series of indoor Winter Farmers Markets. The markets provide an additional source of income for local vendors during the offseason, promote sustainable farming methods and economic justice for regional farm families, encourage wholesome eating, and support the building of relationships between producers and consumers. Enjoy a wide range of seasonal, sustainably-produced goods and support your local farmers and vendors at this market. Available items may include winter produce, honey, meat, eggs, baked goods, tea, salsas, sauces, spreads, preserves, yarns, & beauty products! Questions? Contact Rabbi Ryan Daniels, [email protected] or (847) 835-0724, or Robert Levy, [email protected].

NSCI’s Snowbird Shabbatot

Mark your calendars! Rabbi Geffen is headed to Palm Springs, CA & South Florida for NSCI’s Snowbird Shabbatot: Palm Springs, California Area: January 26-27, 2018 Boca Raton Area: Friday, February 2, 2018. If you live in either area, please contact Sarah Duffin at 847-835-0724 or [email protected] to give us your winter address.


Adult Education

Every Face Has a Name With Rabbi Daniels 

December 11, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm
Join Rabbi Daniels to watch and then discuss Every Face Has a Name (2015), Magnus Gertten's award-winning documentary. Watch Gertten's team find and interview survivors from German concentration camps portrayed in recently discovered archival film showing their arrival in Malmo, Sweden, on April 28, 1945.

Study the Talmud with Rabbi Geffen

Mondays through December 18 (No class on December 11) , 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Join Rabbi Geffen as we continue the study of Tractate Brachot. All are welcome. If you want to purchase your own copy of the Talmud translation we use for class, Koren Talmud Bavli, Berakhot by Rabbi Adin Even-Israel Steinsaltz, you can find it on

Contemporary Jewish Literature with Neil Rigler

Mondays, January 8, 22, 29, February 5 & 26, 7:15 pm
Explore contemporary Jewish stories, poetry, and plays with NSCI’s beloved teacher Neil Rigler. Each week a different piece of literature will be read in class, followed by thought provoking and entertaining discussion. No pre-reading necessary. Bring a friend! RSVP to Miriam Biales, [email protected] or call 847-835-0724.

The Mourner’s Kaddish for Beginners with Rabbi Geffen

Wednesday, January 17, 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
So many of us never learned to say the Kaddish, yet we often find ourselves feeling awkward or embarrassed when at services or a shivah minyan unable to join in. Join Rabbi Geffen for an informative and instructive session on the Kaddish. This class is designed for those who DO NOT YET KNOW how to say the Kaddish. RSVP to Miriam Biales, [email protected] or call 847-835-0724.

The Most Important Talmud Passages an Educated Jew Should Know

Wednesdays, January 17, 24, & 31, 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Join Rabbi Geffen to read and discuss a selection of the most important passages (sugyot) in the Talmud. No Talmud experience required. All texts will be presented and discussed in English.

Dive Into Midrash: Exodus Rabbah with Rabbi Daniels

Saturdays, January 20, February 3, 17, 24 & March 3 11:15 am - 12:15 pm
Why did the Biblical authors waste valuable real-estate in Torah to emphasize Jacob came to Egypt with his family? Isn’t it implied in the first verse? This is just the first of many questions the Rabbis ask in Exodus Rabbah, an 11th – 12th century midrashic work on Exodus. Join Rabbi Daniels after Shabbat Morning Minyan Service for an interactive study of this fascinating text. An understanding of Hebrew is not required — all are welcome! RSVP to Miriam Biales, [email protected] or call 847-835-0724.

Puzzled about Judaism? Join us for an Introduction to Judaism

Mondays, beginning January 22 from 7:00–9:00 pm
Register now for this 18-week course on the basics of Judaism

Part of an interfaith relationship and want to learn more? Born Jewish, but it’s been a while? Interested in conversion to Judaism? Join us! North Shore Congregation Israel (sessions 1–9) 1185 Sheridan Road, Glencoe, IL 60022 Lakeside Congregation (sessions 10–18) 1221 County Line Road, Highland Park, IL 60035. To learn more or to register contact Joy Wasserman at [email protected] or visit 


Youth and Family

Shabbat Enrichment Class

Four year olds attend 10:00 am -11:30 am, Three year olds attend 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, September 15 - December 22
Join Early Childhood Jewish Educators at the Takiff Center on Fridays to celebrate Shabbat and Jewish Holidays. Each week, students will enjoy games, stories, songs, craftss, and challah. NSCI clergy drop in to lead our Shabbat celebration. $275 for 11 sessions Questions or to register, contact Susan Ellenby, [email protected].

Strollers, Stories & Celebrations

Friday, December 15 - Chanukah, 10:00 am - 10:45 am
Stories, songs, movement and more! Celebrate Shabbat & Jewish holidays with your little ones at our free monthly drop in program. his is a FREE event for children 0-3, and a great way to meet other local parents, grandparents & caregivers. Come to one or all Friday sessions. Light refreshments served. Open to the community. All are welcome. All Sessions are held at North Shore Congregation Israel. Please park in the North lot and enter through the Education doors. RSVP encouraged. Contact Susan, [email protected] or 847-835-0724. Click HERE to view the flyer and see all upcoming dates.

Havdalah Program for Families with Young Children

Saturday, January 20, 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm, Bernard Weinger JCC, 300 Revere Road, Northbrook
Spend a Saturday afternoon with us! NSCI partners with JCC Chicago and jBaby for an afternoon of fun. Open swim, open gym, crafts and snacks. We will conclude with Havdalah. Remember gym shoes and a towel. Free and open to the community. Register at JCChicago/3rdSaturday or contact [email protected], 847-835-0724


Travel Opportunities

"The Israel You Haven't Seen: Culture, Politics, Technology and more..."  with Patty and Rabbi Steve Mason- October 3-14, 2018 

For more information on this trip click HERE. Questions? Please contact Sarah Duffin at [email protected], 847-835-0724, or Rabbi Mason at [email protected].

Women's Israel Trip with Rabbi Wendi Geffen 

June 23 - July 1, 2018
Join Rabbi Geffen for NSCI's first all women's Israel Trip. Participants will explore, learn and connect to Israel and to each other, forging unbreakable bonds and unforgettable memories. Don't miss this incredible opportunity! For more information, click HERE. Questions? Contact Rabbi Geffen at 847-835-0724 or [email protected].


Tikkun Olam

NSCI's Winter Holiday Collections

November 5 - December 17 
Help keep Chicago Public Schools high school students warm this winter by donating GENTLY USED or NEW winter coats, hats, mittens and boots. In addition, we're collecting NEW unwrapped children's gifts and gift cards to be donated to Jewish Child & Family Services and Mary Lou's Place (Evanston). Please place donations in the appropriate white collection bins located near the Religious School Office. Questions? Contact Rabbi Daniels: [email protected] or (847) 835-0724

Cookies from the Heart at Ronald McDonald House

Cookies from the Heart at Ronald McDonald HouseDo you like to bake cookies? What could be better than to have fresh homemade cookies awaiting children and their families upon returning from the hospital? We can make that happen! How does it work? Bring ingredients for your favorite recipe and join us one Wednesday a month at Ronald McDonald House: December 20 from 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm. 6-8 volunteers are needed. Carpooling from NSCI is available. For more information and to RSVP, contact Lois Davis, [email protected] for more information.

Mitzvah Opportunity: Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA)

Moraine Township is currently looking for volunteers to help offer free income tax preparation for low-and-moderate-income taxpayers from February 1 - early April 2018.  Volunteers are provided material by Moraine Township and will be trained and certified by the IRS. If you or someone you know might be interested in training to help for the next tax season, please contact Anne Flanigan Bassi at [email protected] or 847-432-3240. 

Adult Mitzvah Corp

Friday, January 19 at CJE’s Lieberman Center for Health and Rehabilitation, 9700 Gross Point Rd., Skokie, 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
We will bring patients to the first floor for Welcome Shabbat services, help them stay on the correct page during the service (many are hard of hearing or have difficulty seeing), and assist patients in getting back to the elevators after services. Carpooling is available from NSCI. If you would like to volunteer, contact Tracey Meyers at 847-242-1234.

Feed the Homeless

Sunday, January 28
Be a part of this amazing mitzvah! Food delivery drivers and food preparation volunteers are needed! Sign up HERE to support those in need. 


Women of NSCI

Join NSCI as we celebrate at the historic Stone Temple Baptist Church in Lawndale!

Monday, January 15, 2018, 9:00 am – 1:30 pm
Let’s join hands together with the Stone Temple congregation. Cost of round trip bus: $18/person. Our bus will leave NSCI parking lot at 9:00 am, returning to NSCI at 1:30 pm. (NSCI will be closed for the holiday). Event is open to all, but space is limited.  Click HERE to register online. Click HERE to view the flyer. Questions? Email Diane Moore  at [email protected]. or Helen Solomon at [email protected].

Vashti’s Banquet

Wednesday, February 28 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Join the Women of NSCI for an evening of fabulous feasting and Purim fun celebrating the beauty & spirit of being a woman! If you’d like to work on this event, contact Helen Heifets at [email protected] or Farzi Saed at [email protected].


Support Resources and Programs

Families Anonymous

Tuesday evenings, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Does someone in your family have a drug/alcohol/behavioral problem? Do you feel isolated, confused, or in need of support? YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Beginning in 2016, North Shore Congregation Israel will be a host site for a weekly Families Anonymous meeting. Families Anonymous is a Twelve Step Program for people concerned about drug/alcohol abuse and behavioral problems of a relative. Please enter through the school-wing door on the North side of the building. Meeting is in the Kersten room on the first floor of the school-wing.

Alcoholics Anonymous Meeting 

Wednesdays at 6:00 pm 
Do you struggle with addiction? Do you want or need support? North Shore Congregation Israel will be a host site for a weekly Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. AA is an anonymous Twelve Step Program for people who struggle with alcohol or other substances. Please enter through the door on the Southernmost front side of the building. Meeting is in the Abe and Vera Cohen Family Room.