Doing Shabbat at SXSW

Rise Up: A Challah Bake and women in tech panel by Tech Tribe. Panel includes podcaster Doree Shafrir; Tamar Shapiro, Director of Data Science at Instagram; Meghan Lapides, SVP of HR at Foursquare and Belle Guttman, Solutions Architect Leader at Amazon Web Services.

Hundreds of young Jews from around the world are about to unplug from technology in the very heart of arguably the most hyper-connected event in the world, the annual SXSW Interactive festival in Austin, TX. The event, called #openShabbat, is a traditional Shabbat meal that combines conversation, song and and food.

Entering its ninth year, it’s also the largest sit-down dinner at the festival.

#openShabbat is hosted by Rabbi Mordechai Lightstone and Chana Lightstone of Tech Tribe, an affiliate of Chabad Young Professionals, dedicated to creating events and experiences for people in tech and digital media – with a particular emphasis on unplugging and striking a balance between time online and off.

For the first time, kosher meals will be available throughout the week from Rabbi Mendy and Mussy Levertov of Chabad Young Professionals Austin. The couple will also host a Shabbat meal the second week of the SXSW festival for those attending its music portion

Lightstone will also be hosting the Jews in Tech Meetup, an official SXSW event.

#openShabbat will be held at 7:30 p.m. at the Hilton, 500 E. Fourth St. in Austin and is made possible with the support of OneTable and the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation. Additional information can be found at