Monmouth Reform Temple in Tinton Falls was still without power from Hurricane Irene, but thanks to some resourceful congregants who supplied batteries and lighting and refreshments, Monmouth County’s first “Shofaron” was held alfresco on Aug. 30 on MRT’s backyard patio. Guest leader was shofar coach Cantor Daniel Pincus of Congregation Shaarei Shalom in Riverdale, the Bronx. Pincus coined the term “Shofaron” and is a founding member of www.shofarcorps.org, which declared Rosh Hodesh Elul as the International Day of Shofar Study. He spoke about the history of the ram’s horn, how it is made, and the different ways of sounding it.
Richard Sachs, MRT’s ba’al tekia (shofar sounder) for nearly 20 years, organized the event to meet and learn from other area shofarists. Seven shofar players and their families came to share their customs and experiences. Besides MRT members, the Shofaron drew representatives from Congregation B’nai Israel in Rumson and Temple Beth Miriam in Elberon. Participants learned important details of how to play the shofar blasts and were urged to practice in order to inspire their congregations with artful and soulful shofar sounding.