ChaiPod hosts last music lounge of semester

Courtney Cook

Senior German major Karl Hopkins-Lutz (left) and Scott Figler, a Jewish Campus Service Corps fellow, jam acoustically during chaiPod, yesterday afternoon in the lower level of Eastway. DANA BEVERIDGE | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: DKS Editors

The chaiPod Jewish music group gathered yesterday for the final time this semester by the fireplace in lower Eastway Center lounge.

ChaiPod consists of Jewish musicians and music enthusiasts who meet to play music and discuss music ideas. The group has met at various locations and times around campus to encourage growth.

The program, which began earlier this semester, has received positive feedback from Kent State students, along with recognition from the international organization of Hillel.

“We’re part of eight or nine campuses with a permit to do public-space Judaism,” said Mike Levinstein, assistant director of Hillel of Kent. “We’ve gotten a lot of national feedback from the program.”

Senior German major Karl Hopkins-Lutz said he has attended most of the programming chaiPod has provided this semester.

“All I really do at home when I’m not studying or sleeping is sit around and play my guitar,” he said. “This is just a way for me to do that in public.”

Scott Figler, who organizes event planning and recruitment for Hillel of Kent, said all the chaiPod events so far have been successful, especially the open mic night the organization hosted two weeks ago.

“Our big goal is to bring a Jewish entertainer next semester that can involve the entire campus,” Figler said.

He said there are many Jewish musicians who have a social agenda that extends beyond their musical career.

“They promote values that are important to them beyond musical performing,” Figler said.

Levinstein said he is excited to watch the program continue to grow in Spring 2008.

“We hope that the participants in chaiPod will take ownership of this community we are creating and tell us next spring what kind of programming they want,” Levinstein said.

Next semester, the group hopes to encourage more growth and participation.

“We want to incorporate more students in the program,” Figler said. “Not only to participate in activities, but we want to get to the point where we have more students actively involved in program planning.”

ChaiPod is sponsored by Hillel of Kent. Hillel will host a Hanukkah party at 8 p.m. Dec. 6 in the Rathskeller. The party will include karaoke, dancing, free food, games and prizes. Contact Kent Hillel at (330) 678-0397 for more information.

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Courtney Cook at [email protected].