Chabads first NorCal retreat draws more than 200

An inaugural Shabbaton retreat for Northern California Chabad rabbis and their families drew a sizable crowd to a Vacaville hotel over the July 4 weekend.

The rabbis from 26 Chabad chapters from Fresno to the Oregon border (out of 46 total chapters in that region) attended the event July 5 and 6, according to Rabbi Yosef Levin of Chabad of the Greater South Bay. The gathering included the rabbis’ wives as well as 166 children, Levin added.

“Over the course of the 27-hour retreat there was lots of singing, Torah discussion, stories, youth activities and even women sharing their best recipes,” said Rabbi Raleigh Resnick of Chabad of the Tri-Valley.

Rabbi Yisroel Deren and his wife, Aviva, traveled from the East Coast to offer guidance and act as facilitators. They are senior emissaries who organize many Chabad activities in Connecticut.

The first-time event was so well received, Levin said, that the region’s Chabad rabbis hope to make it an annual event.