First “Shabbat-Luck” Dinner for Jewish Franklin, TN

The “About Us” description on Facebook reads, “This group is for the Jews of Franklin, TN to connect, network, get together, become friends, etc. We might not have a synagogue, but we have this group.” In just three short months, the Facebook group “Jewish Franklin,TN” started by Ellen Witt Monen, has blossomed into a community of around 100 families. Over 40 adults and children attended a dairy pot-luck Shabbat dinner on Friday, June 16 at Fieldstone Park. Monen, who moved from Atlanta in early 2020 with her husband and children aged 8 and 6, said she started it because “I want to make sure my kids know they’re not the only Jews in Franklin”.

More than 40 people attended a recent Jewish Franklin potluck Shabbat dinner.

Friendships have sprung up quickly between the members. While many are new to the area, about half the attendees at the dinner were longtime Franklin residents eager to help them connect. Melissa Sostrin, owner and chief baker of Melissa & Sons Sweets, reached out to the Jewish Federation of Greater Nashville, which funded rental of a covered pavilion at the park. She also secured books from PJ Library for the nearly 20 children in attendance.

The group’s first event was at “We Rock the Spectrum”, an indoor children’s sensory gym that promotes an inclusive play environment for kids of all abilities, owned by group members Samantha and Steve Komarnitsky.

Upcoming events include July 15th - Ladies Happy Hour, July 29th – L’Chayim Hour (adults only drinks & appetizers at a private home), September 9th – Private Comedy Hour with Steve Goodie. To join us, look for “Jewish Franklin, TN” on Facebook. It is open to all residents of Greater Nashville, but all events will likely be in Franklin. After all, that’s the point!


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