A refreshing new must on a family or couple trip to the Holy Land is a visit to “The Workshop”—which is on the grounds of Kibbutz Rosh Tzurim in Gush Etzion.
I had the great pleasure of meeting Mandy and Jeremy Broder, an enthusiastic and refreshingly sweet and energetic couple who live in Efrat. Both artists through various life experiences decided that an amazing way to share their art, and hopefully earn a parnassa as well, was to open a workshop catering to anyone who wishes to come and spend some time creating Judaic art. Most visitors are surprised at what ability they have under the tutelage of Jeremy and Mandy. The average amount of time spent at The Workshop is two and a half hours, and it is less than one hour from Jerusalem. Children and adults alike, under the watchful eyes of both Jeremy and Mandy, create individual or family pieces that they are proud to return to America with.
A recent comment from a visitor says it all. “The Wood Workshop in the Gush was a wonderful, fun, exciting and rewarding experience. I went with my whole family with age range of children from 1 year old to 15 years old and we all had an amazing time (the adults might have even had more fun than the kids but don’t tell them!).”
Mandy and Jeremy, along with their children, are incredibly kind people and they provide a warm and fun environment for everyone to work in. They give wonderful guidance on how to do the projects and provide just the right amount of help that you need to feel confident in working with the wood and the machines, but also feel like you are doing the majority of the project on your own.
The finished product (we did a family project) is stunning and it now hangs in our home, right at our front door. We have had many compliments and inquiries of where we “bought” our piece of art. When I tell the person that my family made it, he/she is so impressed. This was an overall enjoyable and fun experience and I would recommend it to everyone!
Another review stated, “The Workshop always keeps us coming back for more! We’ve already been there twice with an age range of 8-70! Mandy and Jeremy are so wonderful to work with and help you make a creation that everyone can be proud of. Their workshop is fun, artistic and cool and will impress even the most skeptical of children or grandparents. I would definitely recommend this as a fabulous family activity. We can’t wait to go back again!”
Yet another satisfied customer commented, “My kids had a blast making their own beautiful Judaica pieces and using real machinery to do it!”
A great way to have a real feel of what happens at The Workshop is to check out their Facebook page at The Workshop Gush Etzion.Their website www.mandybroderjudaicacreations.com shows the artwork that the Broders are able to create. The cost is 150 shekel per person with a minimum amount of 900 shekel to open a group. Couples are welcome to come alone as long as the 900-shekel amount is covered. A maximum number of 14 people can be accommodated per group.
Mandy originally began her business by creating custom art for clients. For those who are interested in finding a significant, original masterpiece to give to a loved one on a special occasion or a couple for an anniversary, or in donating of a one-of-a-kind piece of art to their shul/school, one does not have to go any further than to check out the website and contact Mandy directly. One of the most pleasant aspects of working with this artist is her charm, professionalism and sincerity.
Mandy has a Facebook group in which practically each day she posts a positive and beautiful insight into what really counts in life. Her group is called “The Gifted Experience.” One cannot read it without feeling the sun shine into your home that much more strongly even on a day when the weather is inclement!
I would be remiss if I didn’t once again suggest strongly to any family or couple that is planning a trip to Israel shortly to prearrange a visit to “The Workshop Gush Etzion.” Soon in the offing will be date nights for couples to come together or for one-on-one time with someone special.
Your entire family will thank you and have beautiful memories.
By Nina Glick