The Christian Women’s Connection November Brunch will be held Monday, Nov. 12, from 8:45 to 10:30 a.m. in the Lighthouse Point Room at the Danversport Yacht Club, 161 Elliott St., Danvers. The brunch features the group’s annual country fair and auction with handmade treasures and homemade treats. Also, Marion Dickinson will speak about looking for love in all the wrong places, but then finding it. Brunch costs $13 all inclusive, and all women are welcome to attend. Free childcare is available for children up to age 5. Reservations are required by Friday, Nov. 9. For more information or to reserve a spot, call Jan at 978-532-1379 or 978-303-7873, or Laura at 978-532-2157.
Cohen Hillel Academy will host PJ Library Kiddie Make and Take, a program for 3- and 4-year-olds, on Wednesday, Nov. 14, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. at 6 Community Road, Marblehead. The program includes a fun story and craft hour around Jewish themes. The program is free and held monthly. Snacks will be served. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Reserve a spot by Monday, Nov. 12, by contacting Phyllis Osher at 978-740-4404 or email@example.com. The program is made possible by the Robert I. Lappin Charitable Foundation.
The Rev. Dr. Judy Smith-Valley was appointed interim minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lynn in Swampscott. Smith-Valley is an accredited interim minister and has served as interim in three other congregations, most recently in Keene, N.H. Smith-Valley holds a master of divinity from Harvard Divinity School and a doctor of ministry from the Bangor Theological Seminary. She has been a quilter for 18 years and considers it her spiritual practice. For more information about Smith-Valley or worship services, visit www.uucgl.org.
The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Marblehead will host its second annual Great Pumpkin Carving Contest beginning with a Great Pumpkin Carving on Sunday, Oct. 28, from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at 28 Mugford St., Marblehead. The public is welcome to participate, and carving tools and snacks will be provided. Participants are encouraged to bring their own pumpkins, but extras will be available for those unable to pick one up beforehand. After the carving event, pumpkins will be taken outside for display, then stored inside until Oct. 31. Any and all carved pumpkins will be accepted for the contest as long as they are delivered in time for trick-or-treating hours on Wednesday, Oct. 31. On Halloween night, the pumpkins will decorate the church lawn, and trick-or-treaters and passers-by will be able to vote for their favorite pumpkin. There is no charge for entering a pumpkin or voting. Also, Marblehead Gardens is offering a $1 discount off any 10-pound pumpkin (or more) if it will be used in the contest. For more information, call 781-631-1215.
The Israeli Festival of the Arts exhibit and sale at Congregation Shirat Hayam, 55 Atlantic Ave., Swampscott, features 1,500 works of art by more than 100 Israeli artists from the Safrai Gallery in Jerusalem. Artwork includes original oil paintings, watercolors, lithographs and etchings. Festival hours are Nov. 15, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Nov. 16, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Nov. 17, daytime viewing only following Shabbat Cafe until 2 p.m., and again from 7 to 10:30 p.m.; and Nov. 18, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. A gallery opening and patron preview party is set for Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $25 per person and include wine, cheese, music, a guided gallery tour and a coupon for $25 off a purchase of $250-$499, or $50 off $500 or more. For more information, contact Marla Gay, director of congregational life, at 781-599-8005 or Marla@ShiratHayam.org. To purchase preview party tickets, visit www.ShiratHayam.org.
Congregation Shirat Hayam of the North Shore will host a celebration of 36 years of “Looking at the Law” with Neil Chayet on Saturday, Nov. 3, at 55 Atlantic Ave., Swampscott. Chayet, a Tufts University and Harvard Law School graduate, is best known for his nationally syndicated radio program, “Looking at the Law.” Chayet will discuss how “Looking at the Law” began, what he’s learned from broadcasting and interacting with the public, and his views on the need to change the way people think about anger and conflict. The cost is $118 per person and includes an hors d’oeuvres reception at 7 p.m., priority seating, listing in program guide and dessert; or $36 for general admission/$40 at the door, which includes a dessert reception following the presentation. General admission is at 8 p.m. For more information or to order tickets, visit www.ShiratHayam.org.
Swampscott Church of Spiritualism will hold a Fall Spiritual Festival on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 59 Burrill St. The festival will include private readings with mediums, psychics, angel and tarot card readers, Reiki, chair massages, and vendors with jewelry, meditation music and crafts. Readings cost $25 and include coffee and refreshments. To reserve a reading in advance, call 781-595-6972 or visit www.swampscottchurchofspiritualism.org for more information.
Torah Hub, a North Shore Adult Jewish Education Collaborative, is a free program that explores Judaism and Social Justice. The Monday night portion of the series, led by Temple Sinai’s Rabbi Fine, will be held at Aviv Center in Peabody on Oct. 29, Nov. 12 and 19, and Dec. 10 at 7:30 p.m. Topics focus on “Jewish Food Ethics for the 21st Century.” The Thursday night portion of the series, led by Rabbi Margie Klein of Congregation Sha’arei Shalom, will be held at the NSJCC in Marblehead at 7:30 p.m., on Oct. 25, Nov. 8 and 29, and Dec. 6, focusing on “Transforming Ourselves, Transforming the World.” The final session, featuring a symposium led by local rabbis, is set for Dec. 13 at 7:30 p.m. at the NSJCC in Marblehead. All sessions are free. Registration is required and can be done at www.jfns.org/torahhub.aspx, or contact Alanna Cooper at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-224-4096.
Mothers of the PJ Library are invited to participate in Connections, a free book group that provides mothers with opportunities to meet, socialize and engage in lively and rich discussions about Jewish identity and Jewish family life. The program is free and includes two books and desserts. Connections is offered at Panera Bread in Swampscott on Monday, March 11; Hardcover Restaurant in Danvers on Monday, March 4; and Temple Ahavat Achim in Gloucester on Wednesday, March 13. Groups meet from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Connections is open to mothers who have children currently or formerly enrolled in the PJ Library. Connections is a program of the Robert I. Lappin Charitable Foundation. For more information or to register, contact Phyllis Osher at 978-740-4404 or email@example.com.
North Shore Players will present “Prairie Lights,” a holiday musical, on Dec. 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9, running Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2:30 p.m. in the Hogan Regional Center Auditorium, 6 Hathorne Circle, Danvers. “Prairie Lights” tells the story of a Jewish brother and sister who journey west on an Orphan Train in 1905. Arriving with other homeless youths in a tiny Nebraskan town just before the holidays, the siblings are adopted by Wellspring’s only Jewish couple. As Christmas and Hanukkah approach, orphans and residents alike are on a quest to reunite Wellspring after being threatened by a fearful banker. For more information and directions, visit www.northshoreplayers.org.