The Delta Center for Culture and Learning at Delta State University recently provided an introduction to the Delta for the TENT group sponsored by the Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life in Jackson.
The TENT program is a series of week-long seminars that immerse 21-30 year old Jews in full impact experiences of culture, cuisine and community. This group was led Rachel Myers of the Institute who described the week- long program as “beginning in New Orleans and spending a week travelling the Delta exploring the Jewish experience in one of this nation’s most distinctive, complicated, and fascinating regions, discovering the best that the South has to offer.
Music, art, food, and visits to Jewish communities large and small made this a week the participants will never forget. On their stop in Cleveland, they were introduced to the Delta by Dr. Rolando Herts and Lee Aylward of the Delta Center. They enjoyed a meal with the congregation of Temple Adath Israel and topped the evening off with a visit to Po Monkey’s, one of the last surviving rural juke joints or “jook” houses, as documented by Harlem Renaissance writer Zora Neale Hurston and blues folklorist Barry Lee Pearson.