ONEG after Megillah reading 11am to 12 noon


Upcoming PJ Library dates for 2018:

 A Vibrant and Caring Community

The Troy Jewish Community Religious School ("TJCRS") offers a Jewish education to children from pre-K through seventh grade in a warm and welcoming environment. Our students learn about the values of tzedakah (ensuring the basic well-being of others by sharing what we have) and tikkun olam (the obligation to "repair the world" to leave it better than we found it). These values are infused into all aspects of the school community and educational programming.

TJCRS students enjoying a lessonWe hold classes on Sunday mornings for Pre-k through grade 7 from 9 am to noon.  We focus on religious education, including Jewish customs and practices; values; prayer; holidays and symbols; Bible and history; and Israel.

Our experienced and caring teachers are assisted by our wonderful teenage volunteers who themselves recently graduated from our program.  We provide children with a mid-morning snack (peanut-free).

Even though our school is small, our students come from all over the region. At least twice during the school year, we like to invite parents to a meeting during Sunday school hours. This gives parents a chance to meet and communicate directly with each other and our directors. We outline our goals and discuss any ideas and innovations parents would like to consider. We also keep in touch with all parents regularly by email to keep everybody up-to-date on what's happening in the classrooms.

TJCRS welcomes both traditional and non-traditional families to pursue joyous worship, lifelong learning and acts of loving kindness.

For additional information about TJCRS,, please email our school director, Jayne Architzel,  at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

TJCRS is generously funded by the Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York.

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Click here for TJCRS Registration Form


 Zack P and Myles B        EMET



Jewish Summer Camps and more

Both research and personal experience tell us that Jewish summer camp and high school programs powerfully connect young Jews to their Judaism. Immersive Jewish living, spirited music, lifelong friendships, and the opportunity to live Jewish values in a 24-7 community all bring Judaism off the page and into the lives young people, expanding its place in their hearts beyond family and synagogue.  Here is a list of some of Rabbi Gordon's favorite Jewish summer camps and teen programs, many of which Berith Sholom kids have attended.

But yes, Jewish overnight camp is expensive!  It requires planning and saving, but you don't have to pay for it alone.  Every Jewish camp and teen program offers scholarships. There are additional "camperships" available from many sources, because the wider Jewish community believes in the value and power of these Jewish experiences.  You can apply for any or all of these:

Berith Sholom's Justin Walsh Campership fund, named in memory of a 5th-generation Berith Sholom child, offers small camperships to our members.  Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call the office at 518-272-8872  

Jewish Federation of Northeast NY offers substantial need-based scholarships to area Jewish youth to attend Jewish enrichment experiences including summer camp, summer travel programs, year-in-Israel, and leadership programs.  Federation also offers scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students. offers camperships of up to $1,000 for a child's first summer at Jewish overnight camp or teen leadership program.  This is available to families who have at least one child who has participated in PJ Library.

 Apply early - deadlines range from late February to mid-April and can vary year to year


Jewish Summer Camps you may want to check out

Reform Movement (URJ) Camps and Programs:

  • Crane Lake (West Stockbridge, MA) - bunks mostly move together through activities, with 1 or 2 daily individual choice activities.  Entering grade 2-10
  • Eisner (Great Barrington, MA) - campus-style individual choice of activities plus bunk-based activities.  Entering grade 2-10
  • 6 Points Sci-Tech (Byfield, MA / Los Angeles) - individual choice of science and technology learning tracks plus bunk-based activities.  Entering grade 5-10
  • 6 Points Sports Academy (Greensboro, NC / Los Angeles) - individual choice of sports intensives plus bunk-based activities.  Entering grade 4-11
  • Kutz (Warwick, NY) - leadership and deep learning for Jewish teens from around the world.  High school 
  • Mitzvah Corps (US / international) - direct service embedded in a Jewish worldview.  High school 

Other Jewish overnight camps and programs:

  • Eden Village (Putnam Valley, NY) - innovative Jewish organic farm camp. Entering grade 3-11
  • Bima (Brandeis University) - Jewish arts intensive for high school students
  • Genesis (Brandeis University) - Intensive academic study through a Jewish lens, for high school students

Still looking?  OneHappyCamper has a searchable list of over 100 Jewish sleepaway camps and leadership experiences.  


Not ready to let them leave home?  There are also local Jewish day camps:

  • Albany JCC's Camp Taf - age 3 to entering K
  • Albany JCC's Camp Olam - entering grades 1-6   [A little local history:  Camp Olam is located in Rensselaer County near Grafton State Park, on property formerly owned by the Troy JCC (whose building is now the Troy YMCA).  You'll still hear Troy Jews refer to the site as "Camp CeDaCa." CeDaCa has nothing to do with tzedakah (righteous giving) -- it stands for (Jewish Community) CEnter DAy CAmp!]
  • Albany JCC's Teen Camp - entering grade 7-10
  • Temple Israel's Camp Givah - age 3 to entering grade 10




A Jewish support group for parents in NY's Capital District who face more than the usual parenting challenges.  Why "Smarter Than Abraham"? Because when Abe faced the most difficult parenting challenge in his life — turn his son into a burnt offering?? — who did he talk to?  Nobody.  Not Sarah, not God, not Isaac, not Eliezer the trusted head of his household staff. We can be #SmarterThanAbraham

Thanks to Jewish Federation of NENY for partnering with Jewish Family Services to create "JFS Without Walls" so we can bring in a facilitator. Want to join us at the next meeting? Send a private note to Rabbi Gordon This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Justine Braithwaite (JFS facilitator) This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  All parents in Jewish-identified families are welcome.  You are not alone!