About Our Events

Egg Rolls, Egg Creams & Empanadas Festival Slideshow

Our annual block party, taking place every June, is a joyous cross-cultural celebration paying homage to the Jewish, Chinese and Puerto Rican communities of our neighborhood. Enjoy music, food, folk art demos and crafts, including klezmer and cantorial music, Chinese opera, Yiddish and Chinese lessons, mah jongg, scribal arts and more. Check out a photo gallery of all the amazing festival activities.


Lost & Found Music Series

The Museum at Eldridge Street's Lost & Found Music Series extends our preservation mission, presenting Jewish musical forms that are at risk of disappearing, and looks at the way Jewish music influences and draws inspiration from other cultural traditions.


The Morris Kaplan Scholar-in-Residence Program

The Museum;s landmark site has a long history as a place of Jewish learning. Join us for classes on the bible, Jewish history and culture, and memoir writing and genealogy. The Museum’s lifelong learning is funded, in part, by the Alice Lawrence Foundation.


Preservation Detectives Family Program

Binoculars? Check. Notepads? Check. Magnifying glasses? Check. Preservation Detectives, grab your tools and prepare for adventure. Step into a world filled with color, stories, and secrets. Climb stairs, count stars, open doors, even peek inside these 125 year old walls. Each month features a different theme, art project, and a new discovery.


Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture Series

Presented with the Center for the Living City, this series celebrates the life and legacy of preservationist Jane Jacobs (1916-2006). In her work and in in influential book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities (1961), she argued that urban renewal did not respect the needs of most city dwellers.

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September 2016
MONDAY - October 31; November 7, 14, 21, 28; December 5 at 11 am

Before & Beyond the Lower East Side – With Urban Historian Barry Feldman

Urban historian Barry Feldman retuns to lead this 6-part class focusing on Jewish settlements before and after the iconic period of immigration to the Lower East Side. Classroom discussion of the Colonial Sephardic Community in lower Manhattan, the Grand Concourse in the Bronx and Harlem in the late 19th and early 20th centuries will alternate with 2-hour walking tours in those neighborhoods where we will admire former synagogues, boyhood homes of Jewish celebrities like Richard Rodgers and eclectic 19th-century architecture.

$20 per class; $100 for all six sessions

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TUESDAY - November 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, December 6, 13 & 20 from 11 am to 12:30 pm

King David: Adulterer, Murderer, Poet, Messiah – with Dr. Regina Stein

The story of King David is the richest, most robust and complex portrait of any character in the Hebrew Bible. As king and warrior David excels. But in his human relationships with his wives, children, and others, David’s behavior is often less than heroic. How does David become the eternal hero of the Jewish people? Why does Jewish tradition teach that the Messiah will be a descendent of King David? In the fall semester of this course we will discuss David’s relationships with both human beings and God as presented by the author of I-II Samuel. In the winter semester, we will explore David’s image as poet in the book of Psalms and the role assigned to him by the rabbis as the ancestor of the messiah and redeemer of…

$20 per class; $140 for all eight sessions

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WEDNESDAY - November 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, December 7, 14 & 21 from 11 am to 12:30 pm

The Good Good-Bye: On Death and Dying – With Rabbi Aviad Bodner

Explore the views and practices of the Jewish tradition on death and mourning, including end of life matters, burial and funeral customs, suicide, renting of garments, shiva practices and the Jewish view of the afterlife. Aviad Bodner is rabbi of the Stanton Street Shul on the Lower East Side.

$20 per class; $140 for all eight sessions

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THURSDAY - November 3, 10, 17, December 1, 8, 15 & 22 from 11 am to 12:30 pm

Not Just the Weekly Torah Portion with Dr. Regina Stein

Bring your questions and opinions as we explore a variety of issues raised by the Torah portion each week incorporating both modern critical as well as traditional approaches to the biblical text. Knowledge of Hebrew and previous Torah study are not required.

$20 per class; $120 for all seven classes

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FRIDAY - Oct. 28, Nov. 4, 11 & 18 from 11 am to 12:30 pm

What It Means to Be an Advocate – Class with Betsy Gotbaum

Learn how to make change and get things done! Former New York City Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum describe where you can turn within and without city agencies to take action on issues both personal and public. Brainstorm with this seasoned activist on how to advocate for issues that are important to you.

$20 per class; $60 for all four sessions

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Wednesday, September 28 at 6:30 pm

Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture: Adam Gopnik

Adam Gopnik, staff writer for The New Yorker and author, will speak on the legacy of writer and preservationist Jane Jacobs (1916-2006), whose work changed the way the world views and understands cities.  Award-winning author and preservationist Roberta Brandes Gratz will introduce Gopnik.

This event is free. RSVP requested.

Presented with the Center for the Living City

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October 2016
On view through Thursday, December 1, 2016

Kaddish for Dabrowa Bialostocka – Exhibition by Mark Podwal

Eighteen new works in acrylic and colored pencil by artist Mark Podwalk inaugurate the Museum at Eldridge Street’s new Michael Weinstein Gallery. The featured works are inspired by the artist’s recent visit to Dabrowa Bialostocka, the shtetl in Poland where his mother was born. Although at one time Jews made up 78 percent of the town’s population, none remain today. Podwal describes the works as a “visual diary of my journey to Dabrowa.” The drawings are based on what he saw in town and what he heard from elderly residents as they reminisced about their former Jewish neighbors. Along with the exhibition, a documentary film about Dabrowa by Tomasz Wisniewski will be screened every day at 2 pm. The September 18 opening also celebrates the publication of Podwal’s new book,…

The exhibition is included with Museum admission which is $14 adults and $10 students/seniors

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Wednesday, October 5 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm

The Gilded Age in New York – Book Launch with Esther Crain

It’s hard to imagine an era in New York’s past more transformative than the Gilded Age. In 1866, New York’s population of just over 800,000 was concentrated below 23rd Street. By 1900, new arrivals from across the world helped push the population to three million. Electric lights bathed parks and sidewalks in a brilliant nighttime glow. Steel office towers skimmed the heavens, and a graceful bridge united the greater metropolis. Join Esther Crain, author of the new release The Gilded Age in New York, 1870-1910 (Hachette Book Group, 2016), and the writer behind the website Ephemeral New York, for a reading and Q &A. She’ll explore what day-to-day life was like for New Yorkers in an age of incredible wealth, deep poverty, political corruption, invention, ingenuity, and rapid social change.

Pay What You Wish

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Thursday, October 6, at 6:30 pm

Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture: Peter Laurence & Robert Kanigel

Peter Laurence, author of Becoming Jane Jacobs, and Robert Kanigel, author of the upcoming book Eyes on the Street: The Life of Jane Jacobs, will speak on the legacy of writer and preservationist Ms. Jacobs (1916-2006), whose work changed the way the world views and understands cities.  Award-winning author and preservationist Roberta Brandes Gratz will introduce Laurence and Kanigel.

This event is free. RSVP requested.

Presented with the Center for the Living City.

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Sunday, October 9 from 11 am to 12:30 pm

Raise the Roof at the Reliquary! Family Sukkot Program

This Sukkot, we’re teaming up with the City Reliquary museum in Brooklyn and heading to their backyard for a special holiday program. A reliquary is a container for relics and sure enough, the City Reliquary is overflowing with vintage subway signs, neon lights, and other New York treasures! Explore their amazing collections as we snack, celebrate and decorate a Sukkah with our own original crafts.  

Pay what you wish, for ages 4-11

This program takes place at the City Reliquary in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, 370 Metropolitan Avenue.

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Monday, October 10 at 10:45 am

Columbus Day Walking Tour – Shuls of Grandeur

Join us on Columbus Day for an exploration of the Lower East Side’s most historic synagogues. Visit Bialystoker Synagogue, the largest active congregation on the Lower East Side today; Beth Hamedrash Hagadol, the nation’s oldest Orthodox Jewish Russian congregation; and our home and a magnificent National Historic Landmark, the Eldridge Street Synagogue. We’ll also stop at other historic sites and modern day eateries, including Educational Alliance, Henry Street Settlement, Seward Park, and The Pickle Guys.    

$25 per person

Co-presented with the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

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Sunday, October 16 from 10 am to 3 pm

Open House New York

The Museum’s landmark home is a featured site of Open House New York, America’s largest architecture and design event.  We are offering free synagogue tours that tell the story of our magnificent 1887 National Historic Landmark, the first great house of worship built in America by Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. Half-hour tours offered at 10, 10:30, 11, 11:30, 1, 1:30, 2 and 2:30. A self-guided scavenger hunt and rose window art activity are offered throughout the day for families.

This is a free event.

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Thursday, October 20 from 6 to 9 pm

Sukkot at City Reliquary – After Hours Event

For this month’s After Hours, we head to Williamsburg, Brooklyn where the City Reliquary has created a unique, handcrafted sukkah, the temporary hut where meals are eaten during the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. Explore the City Reliquary’s collection of delightfully quirky New York City ephemera, learn about the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, and enjoy wine and snacks under the stars!

$15 per person - Includes wine and refreshments

This event takes place at City Reliquary, 370 Metropolitan Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

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Thursday, October 27 at 6:30 pm

Borscht Belt – Book Launch with Photographer Marisa Scheinfeld

For much of the 20th century the Borscht Belt was a thriving vacation destination for the New York Jewish community.  By the 1980s and ‘90s, though, the region was in a state of rapid economic decline leading many of the hotels and clubs to close. For years Marisa Scheinfeld, a Catskills native, photographed the abandoned hotels of the area capturing their haunting and at times eerily beautiful state of decline. The result is now the subject of a new coffee table book, Borscht Belt: Revisiting the Remains of America’s Jewish Vacationland (Cornell University, 2016). Join us for a reception and remarks by the author.

This event is co-present with the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

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Sunday, October 30 at 3 pm

Micro Walking Tour of Eldridge Street – Presented with Untapped Cities

Travel the length of Eldridge Street, and you will discover tales of the immigrant experience, architectural triumph, and the realization of the American Dream alongside corruption and even murder. Join us as we walk the length of Eldridge Street and discover a former prison, a synagogue turned-artist studio, the first settlement house in America, and the War of 1812 story of our street’s namesake, Lieutenant Joseph C. Eldridge along with other neighborhood treasures.

$25 per person - Space is limited and RSVP is required

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November 2016
Tuesday, November 8 from 1 to 2:30 pm

President’s Don’t Have to Eat Vegetables – Election Day Family Program

As the country elects its 45th President, enjoy fun facts about Numbers 1 – 44! Join us for Judith St. George’s award-winning book, So You want to Be President? Find out which Commander in Chief refused to eat broccoli and which one ate everything in sight! Discover who was the smallest president and who was SOOO big, he had to build a special bath tub. (And do you know who was President when the Eldridge Street Synagogue opened in 1887?) After the story, future voters ages 4-11 make patriotic crafts and cast a ballot in our own 2016 election.

Pay What You Wish

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Wednesday, November 9 at 6:30 pm

Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture: Darren Walker

Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation, will speak on the legacy of writer and preservationist Jane Jacobs (1916-2006), whose work changed the way the world views and understands cities.  Award-winning author and preservationist Roberta Brandes Gratz will introduce Walker.

This event is free. RSVP required.

Presented with the Center for the Living City.

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Sunday, November 13 from 12 to 4 pm

Generation to Generation Festival

Don a top hat, feather hat or other period garb and prepare to travel back in time to the late 19th century when the Eldridge Street Synagogue first opened. Music, art, food demos, and fun historical activities bring to life what it was like to be an immigrant when the Eldridge Street Synagogue was first built. Take a citizenship test based on late 19th-century requirements. Learn recipes and household tips from the 1901 Settlement Cook Book. Visit a photo booth and take a picture that would make your old country family kvell. Hear a concert of early synagogue music – including some tunes you might not expect! Enjoy enactments of dramatic moments from the Eldridge Street Synagogue’s early history. Families discover what life was like for children 100 years ago…

Pay what you wish

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Thursday, November 17 at 6:30 pm

Secrets of the Synagogue – After Hours Tour presented with Atlas Obscura

Find evidence of prayer, politicking, and even addiction in the Eldridge Street Synagogue. The synagogue’s immigrant founders were anything but wizened old men. Most of the congregation’s leaders were in their 30s and 40s, savvy businessmen, and active in neighborhood affairs. Hear the stories of a banker, a butcher, a budding boxer and other characters who filled the pews.  Learn some Yiddish insults along the way.

$30 per person - Includes wine and refreshments

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Sunday, November 20 at 3 pm

In Conversation: Edward Hirsch and Alec Wilkinson

When poet Edward Hirsch’s son died tragically, his friend, writer Alec Wilkinson, encouraged him to write through his grief. The result was Hirsch’s heartbreakingly beautiful book-length poem, Gabriel. Hirsch and Wilkinson will discuss the creation of this modern day elegy, written in the grip of the poet’s suffering.

$14 adults: $10 students and seniors

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Monday, November 21 at 6:30 pm

Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture: Janette Sadik-Khan

Janette Sadik-Khan, former NYC Department of Transportation Commissioner who introduced pedestrian plazas, bike lanes and bike sharing, will speak on the legacy of writer and preservationist Jane Jacobs (1916-2006), whose work changed the way the world views and understands cities.  Award-winning author and preservationist Roberta Brandes Gratz will introduce Sadik-Khan. (Please note that due to a scheduling conflict, this event has been moved from its original November 16 date, and will now take place on Monday, November 21.)

This event is free. RSVP requested.

Presented with the Center for the Living City.

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Wednesday, November 30 at 6:30 pm

Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture: Gary Hattem

Gary Hattem president of the Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation, Managing Director of their Community Development Finance Group, and a former community-based low-income housing developer, will speak on the legacy of writer and preservationist Jane Jacobs (1916-2006), whose work changed the way the world views and understands cities.  Award-winning author preservationist Roberta Brandes Gratz will introduce Hattem.

This event is free. RSVP requested.

Presented with the Center for the Living City.

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December 2016
Sunday, December 4 at 3 pm

Concert: Sacred Swing with the Eyal Vilner Big Band

By popular demand, Israeli-born composer and musician Eyal Vilner returns to Eldridge Street with his swinging sixteen-piece band. They will perform Vilner’s new compositions, original versions of jazz classics and music from the Big Band’s new project “Sacred Swinging Sounds.”

$25 adults; $15 students/seniors

Sponsored by Steven and Helene Walsey

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Monday, December 5 at 6:30 pm

Book Launch – Curating America by Richard Rabinowitz

Dr. Richard Rabinowitz, President of the American History Workshop, is one of the leading public historians in the United States with over 45 years of experience in creating news museums and exhibition on every aspect of American history and culture. Join us for a reception and remarks by the author to celebrate the publication of his new work Curating America: Journeys through Storyscapes of the American Past.  

Pay What You Wish

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Wednesday, December 7 at 6:30 pm

Jane Jacobs Centennial Lecture: Saskia Sassen & Richard Sennett

Saskia Sassen, Professor of Sociology and Chair of the Committee on Global Thought at Columbia University, and Richard Sennett, Professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics and Professor of Humanities at NYU, will speak on the legacy of writer and preservationist Jane Jacobs (1916-2006), whose work changed the way the world views and understands cities.  Award-winning author and preservationist Roberta Brandes Gratz will introduce Sassen and Sennett.

This event is free. RSVP requested.

Presented with the Center for the Living City.

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Wednesday, December 14 at 7 pm

A Night with the Andy Statman Trio – Presented by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation

Dubbed “a musician’s musician” by The New York Times, Andy Statman is one of the premier clarinetists and mandolinists playing today. Join him and his longtime partners Larry Eagle (percussion) and Jim Whitney (bass) for their trademark blend of American roots music, personal prayerful Hasidic music, klezmer, and avant-garde jazz.

$30 in advance; $45 at the door

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Opening Thursday, December 15 from 6 to 8 pm

From the Blavatnik Archive – Postcards of the Lower East Side

In the early 20th century, the Lower East Side was the most crowded neighborhood in the world. Newly arrived immigrants as well as visitors sent postcards home showing lively streets crowded with pickle vendors, pushcarts and horse-drawn carriages. They evoked an exotic locale like no other at the time – a place that no longer exists today. An exhibit of original postcards from the Blavatnik Archives will bring images of that by-gone era back to the neighborhood, and recall an area that in memory and imagination has come to represent the formative Jewish experience in America.

Included with Museum Admission

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Sunday, December 18 at 3 pm

Concert – The Fabulous Shpilkes

Trumpeter and vocalist Susan Watts commands a klezmer repertoire that is four-generations strong. Together with her mother, drummer Elaine Hoffman Watts, they will perform music written by Elaine’s grandfather in the Ukraine, her father in the United States, as well as their own more recent compositions.

$25 adults; $15 students and seniors

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Sunday, December 25 from 12 to 5 pm

Synagogue Tours, Family Fun, & Yiddish Film with Live Music by the Paul Shapiro Sextet

Searching for something fun to do on Chanukah and Christmas Day? This year, December 25th is also the second day of Chanukah, so come spend the day at Eldridge Street! Join us for a screening of the 1925 Yiddish silent film classic “His People” with an original score created and performed live in our beautiful main sanctuary by saxophonist Paul Shapiro and his sextet.  Young and old alike will be on the edge of their seats, riveted by this story of an immigrant family living on the Lower East side at the turn of the century and Paul Shapiro’s inspired accompanying music. Also, enjoy tours of the Eldridge Street Synagogue, self-guided scavenger hunts, an art activity for families, and a Chanukah candle lighting ceremony!

$14 adults; $10 students/seniors; $6 children

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Monday, December 26 at 1 pm

Hot Cider Walking Tour of the Lower East Side – Dec. 26

Take a tasty trip back in time to the turn of the last century when our neighborhood was home to the largest Jewish population in the world. Enjoy treats from area merchants like The Pickle Guys and Kossar’s Bialys; an exploration of local landmarks including the Forward Newspaper Building; and hot cider with your tour of our historic 1887 synagogue, the first great house of worship built in America by immigrants from Eastern Europe.

$25 per person - Space is limited and RSVP is required

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Tuesday, December 27 from 7 to 9 pm

Holiday Soiree – After Hours Event

People of all faiths are invited to celebrate the fourth night of the Jewish Festival of Lights – Chanukah! First we’ll lead a bottom-to-top tour of the Eldridge Street Synagogue. Then we’ll enjoy a spread of wine and latkes, light the menorah, and share other holiday traditions.

$30 per person

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Wednedsay, December 28 at 1 pm

Hot Cider Walking Tour of the Lower East Side – Dec. 28

Take a tasty trip back in time to the turn of the last century when our neighborhood was home to the largest Jewish population in the world. Enjoy treats from area merchants like The Pickle Guys and Kossar’s Bialys; an exploration of local landmarks including the Forward Newspaper Building; and hot cider with your tour of our historic 1887 synagogue, the first great house of worship built in America by immigrants from Eastern Europe.

$25 per person - Space is limited and RSVP is required

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Special Thanks

The Museum's educational and cultural programs are supported, in part, with grants provided by 180 Varick Street, The David Berg Foundation, Bloomberg, The Brenner Family Foundation, Elias A. Cohen Foundation, Charles Cohn Foundation, The Edouard Foundation, Mitzi & Warren Eisenberg Family Foundation, Epstein Teicher Philanthropies Foundation, The David Geffen Foundation, The Goos Family, Marc Haas Foundation, Institute of Museum and Library Services, Jewish Community Youth Foundation, Eugene Lang Foundation, The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, Alice Lawrence Foundation, Marta Joe Lawrence Charitable Trust, The Samuel M. Levy Family Foundation, Lucius N. Littauer Foundation, The Loeb Family- Third Point Foundation, Mort Mandel Philanthropic Trust, Manhattan Borough President's Office - Borough Needs, NYC & Co. Foundation/MBPO Cultural Tourism, Sun Hill Foundation, Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, New York City Council, The Honorable Margaret Chin, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in Partnership with the City Council, New York City Department for the Aging, NYC Gives (Municipal Employee Giving Campaign- NYC), NYC Gives (Federal Employee Giving Campaign - NYC), New York State Council on the Arts, Leo Rosner Foundation, Charles and Mildred Schnurmacher Foundation, Inc., Michael Tuch Foundation, Lise & Jeffrey Wilks Family Foundation in memory of Jerry and Emily Spiegel, Y.H. Mirzoeff & Sons Foundation, Inc., and Valley National Bank.