Pardes Alumni + Friends Retreat

Unplug and reconnect with the Pardes community!

It’s been a wild few years and it’s time to take a breath, unplug, and reconnect– with nature, with yourself, and with Pardes friends new and old. Join Pardes faculty and staff for an immersive weekend-long retreat this summer in a beautiful setting. We’ll be doing lots of eating, learning, singing, praying, and playing, and we need you there! Friends, partners, and roommates are welcome.

Catch a glimpse of the beautiful and relaxing Pearlstone Retreat Center where we will be gathering.


Featuring Musician-In-Residence, Rabbi Deborah Sacks Mintz!

Rabbi Deborah Sacks Mintz serves the Hadar Institute as Director of Tefillah and Music. An educator, practitioner, and facilitator of Jewish communal prayer, Deborah supports those who seek to deepen, sharpen, and unlock their practice of empowered song and tefila. An artist and composer, she has collaborated on over two dozen albums of new Jewish music with treasured colleagues, including two albums of her own original music: The Narrow and the Expanse (2020) and Yetzira (2023).

August 25-27, 2023

Please plan to arrive at Pearlstone between 2:00-4:00 PM EDT on Friday, August 25 and depart between 12:30- 1:00 PM EDT on Sunday, August 27.

Pearlstone Retreat Center, 5425 Mt Gilead Rd, Reisterstown, MD 21136

Visit the Pearlstone Retreat Center’s website for a preview of the beautiful setting we will be in.

Rabbi Dr. Meesh Hammer-Kossoy

Director of the Year Program
Learn more about Rabbi Dr. Meesh Hammer-Kossoy.


rabba shani gross

Rabba Shani Gross

Director of Education, Pardes North America
Learn more about Rabba Shani Gross.


Rabbi Zvi Hirschfield

Pardes Faculty / Host, Pardes from Jerusalem
Learn more about Rabbi Zvi Hirschfield.


Rabbi Brent Spodek

Pardes North America Faculty Associate/ Host, Good Jewish Lover
Learn more about Rabbi Brent Spodek.

We know a weekend-long retreat can be expensive, so we’ve worked hard to make this opportunity accessible. You will be in charge of your transportation, but we’ve got you covered once you are here. All food, lodging, and nourishment is on us! If for any reason you still feel like you cannot afford the subsidized rates, please be in touch with our team and we will see what we can do.

Early registration is open until May 22.
General registration is open until July 10.

The young professional rate is for ages 22-35.

If you are attending with children and more than one adult, please select Double Occupancy for each adult attending.

If you are attending with children and will not have another adult attending with you, please select Single Occupancy. 

Young Professionals – Double Occupancy (Shared Room)

  • Early Bird Registration: $120.00
  • General Registration: $180.00

General Admission – Double Occupancy (Shared Room)

  • Early Bird Registration: $225.00
  • General Registration: $250.00

General Admission – Single Occupancy (Private Room)

  • Early Bird Registration: $300.00
  • General Registration: $350.00


  • Ages 0-5: $40.00
  • Ages 6-12: $75.00
  • Ages 12+: Full admission price.

Please plan to arrive at Pearlstone between 2:00-4:00 PM EDT on Friday, August 25 and depart Pearlstone between 12:30- 1:00 PM EDT on Sunday, August 27.

By Car: 5425 Mt Gilead Rd, Reisterstown, MD 21136.
By Plane: Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI) is the closest airport to Pearlstone.

Pearlstone is a 35 minute drive from BWI and the best way to get to/from the retreat center is to use rideshare services like Lyft or Uber. As the retreat gets closer, we will send out a document where participants can share their flight and contact information to coordinate carpools.

By Train: Penn Station is the nearest train station to Pearlstone. From there, the retreat center is about a 30 minute drive.

Who’s going to be there?

A wide variety of Pardesniks and some all star faculty from Israel and North America including: Zvi Hirschfield, Meesh Hammer-Kossoy, Shani Gross, Brent Spodek, and more!

We hope that you will reach out to some of your friends from your time at Pardes and join together for this unique opportunity!

What’s going to be happening?

We’ll welcome in Shabbat together with spirited song and prayer, share delicious meals, learn Torah with our amazing faculty, and explore the beautiful campus. Pearlstone has many amenities for us to enjoy, including a pool, lake, hiking trails, farm and animal pasture, sports fields/courts, a fitness center and games corner.

What can I expect on Shabbat?

Shabbat at the retreat will be an opportunity to connect with community, the Divine, and nature. Pardesniks observe/remember Shabbat in a variety of ways, and all expressions of Jewish practice are welcome.

There will be opportunities to come together for communal prayer, and prayer options will be organized based on the needs of the group as indicated on the registration form.

Will this be happening again?

This is a unique opportunity that Pardes is excited to offer to its alumni & friends. We hope that this retreat will set the foundation for many more immersive experiences in the future, and we don’t yet know when these offerings will be happening.

What’s the food and drinks situation?

The food at the retreat center is kosher under OU supervision and is nourishing and delicious! Many of the vegetables and herbs used in the Pearlstone kitchen are grown on their farm, and all of their produce is certified organic. The registration form asks for your dietary needs, which will be accommodated by the kitchen staff. Kosher libations will be served at our Friday night tisch and Saturday night programming.

Are children welcome? Will there be childcare?

We would love to share the magic of Pardes with your children! While children are welcome at the retreat, there will not be a separate program for kids or childcare available. Please note that children at the retreat must be supervised at all times.

What if I need to arrive late or leave early?

We understand that it’s not always easy to take the full weekend away from home. That said, the magic of retreat happens when there’s a container that we step into and out of as a group, and for this to happen we need you there for all of it! Please help us create this environment by planning your travel accordingly.

Pardes values accessibility and aims to create a retreat experience that prioritizes the health and safety of all in attendance. If you have any questions about or COVID policy, please be in touch with us directly.

  • All participants must be up to date on their Covid-19 vaccinations, per the CDC guidelines. This means having received the initial 2 doses of the vaccine. If you have not already gotten a booster dose, this is a great time to do so, although it is not required. All participants must submit proof of vaccination prior to the retreat via the registration form.
  • Please take a rapid/antigen test taken on the morning of the retreat. When you sign in at the retreat, you will be asked to sign something saying you have tested negative.
  • Please bring at least 1 rapid test with you to the retreat. If at any point you feel unwell, you will be asked to mask and self-test.
  • If you are experiencing the following symptoms in the days leading up to the retreat, even if you are testing negative for COVID, we ask that you stay home.
    • fever or feeling feverish/chills
    • cough
    • sore throat
    • runny or stuffy nose
    • muscle or body aches
    • fatigue (tiredness)
    • vomiting, diarrhea, or other GI distress
  • If you do test positive at any point during the retreat, we will make sure that you have what you need and will help make quarantine arrangements.

Unfortunately because we are making this retreat so financially accessible, we are not able to offer refunds.

Have questions? Please contact PNA’s Assistant Director of Online Learning and Alumni Engagement, Jordyn Steifman, at

Interested in learning more about alumni opportunities? 

Visit the Pardes North America Alumni Engagement Page.