This year, the Yiddish Book Center is leading an ambitious new national initiative: we’re offering 20-somethings a new and inspiring way to connect their own passions and interests with the richness of modern Jewish culture.

Tent: Encounters with Jewish Culture is a set of ten free week-long programs, in partnership with some of the most dynamic Jewish cultural organizations in the U.S. and Canada, that will  get 20-somethings talking and thinking about modern Jewish culture. Even young people who until now may not have been interested in thinking about Yiddish or Jewishness at all will find something that excites them—there are programs in creative writing, food, music, fashion, comedy, and journalism. There’s a program that will take participants on a road trip to key civil rights landmarks throughout the South, another that’s for aspiring comic book creators, and another for lovers of museums and aspiring curators.

In other words, there’s something for just about anybody—and each program includes classes with brilliant teachers, visits from internationally celebrated figures in the field. (Last year’s guest speakers included playwright Tony Kushner, for the Theater program, and a former star of Saturday Night Live, for the Comedy one—among many, many others.) The ten 2014 week-long programs are taking place in Amherst, New York, Los Angeles, Montreal, and Mississippi, and are being hosted by amazing organizations including The Jewish Museum, Tablet Magazine, the Center for Jewish History, and, of course, us.

Take a look at this video if you want to hear what last year’s Tent participants said about their experiences in our first three seminars in Comedy, Creative Writing, and Theater. In short, in a single week they discovered how rich and exciting modern Jewish culture can be. 

So, please, get in touch with all the 20-somethings you know. Let them know that they have an opportunity to spend a life-changing week in an amazing place, making friends and meeting collaborators while joining a new conversation about what it means to be a part of modern Jewish culture. For free. All they need to do is go to to learn more.

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