5 things we're excited to see in Greece and Bulgaria


Federation’s upcoming trip to Greece and Bulgaria isn’t just any trip– it’s an inter-generational global experience.

Andrew Wieberdink, Greece and Bulgaria Global Experience Chair, explains: “The idea is to intermingle up and coming Jewish leaders with veteran community leaders in an immersive experience. It’s like a seamless passing of batons, and it gives people confidence in the next generation by truly getting to know them.”

This eight-day global experience leaves October 23 and returns the 30th. The trip is heavily subsidized, and for a limited time we’re offering an additional subsidy to the first ten people who reach out to our Global Experience director Dan Mogelson at dmogelson@jewishminneapolis.org

If you’re into Greek ruins, inspiring Jewish communities, and ouzo shots, this trip might be perfect for you. It was tough, but we managed to narrow it down to five things we’re excited to do in Greece and Bulgaria:


1.       Experience the Jewish Community in Bulgaria

Andrew is eager to learn from the thriving community in Sofia, Bulgaria. Newly revived after the fall of Communism, this community of about 5,000 Jews is anchored by a robust JCC that features a preschool, soup kitchen, and a full schedule of senior activities.  “We can learn a lot about our local Jewish community by connecting with one that is still coming to terms with its Judaism,” says Andrew.

2.       Kabbalat Shabbat with preschoolers in Sofia

Honestly, is there anything better than hearing a group of pre-schoolers singing lecha dodi?

3.       Connect with a different generation

“These days it seems like one generation always feels like the other one is bad,” says Andrew. He believes immersive experiences like this trip can break down powerful barriers. And it’s not just the impactful site visits that strengthen these bonds. Andrew admits, “Partying with my parents’ generation is a lot of fun.”

4.       See the Parthenon.

Need we say more? It’s the Parthenon.

5.       Visit Moishe House Sofia

Andrew is active in Moishe House Twin Cities—he even met his wife there—and last year, he visited the Moishe House in Budapest. “It’s very cool seeing a Moishe House that is operated entirely differently, with entirely different people who come from entirely different experiences—but at the core, we’re all just trying to do the same thing.”

Bonus thing: Eat gyros and take ouzo shots

(See number 3.)