Before he departs our great city for the Grecian life this summer, Ari is someone you better get to know. He’s obsessed with coffee, dreams of taking a cross country bike ride, and cannot wait for his first DC Pride!
Allie: What brought you to DC?
Ari: I’m originally from Minneapolis and then moved to Boston. I just graduated a year ago from college, and my friend asked me if I wanted to move into an apartment with him in DC. I wound up getting a job at the EDCJCC’s GLOE.
Ari: What led you to your role with GLOE?
Ari: I had done a lot of different things related to LGBTQ programming and events. Most recently, I was involved in LGBTQ inclusion at the summer camp I grew up going to – Camp Ramah in Wisconsin. Working at GLOE was a really exciting opportunity to take my energy and excitement for LGBTQ inclusion and programming in Jewish spaces into a new capacity.
Allie: Describe your dream day in DC.
Ari: I definitely know that I need to start with coffee. I’m addicted to coffee, and I used to work at Tryst which was very enabling. I’d go to the Hirschhorn for a while and get ice cream at some point. I love those electric scooters and would want to ride one of those. Sunset is my favorite time of day, so I’d go up to my rooftop with a cup of tea to watch the sunset.
Allie: I’ve heard through the grapevine that you’re actually leaving DC soon! Is this true?
Ari: Yes, I’m leaving DC in a couple weeks. I am going to Queer Talmud Camp in California, and then working at Camp Ramah. In August, I’m moving to Greece to work with an organization related to LGBTQ refugee assistance in Athens.
Allie: Before you say goodbye to the District, what’s on your DC bucket list?
Ari: I just checked off one of the things which was to go to Mama Ayesha’s, which was really good. I want to go to The Phillips Collection soon. On my life bucket list, I’d love to go on an extended, cross country biking trip.
Allie: For your last hurrah with GLOE, you’re planning a lot of fun events for DC Pride. Tell me about those.
Ari: This is my first DC Pride, which is exciting. I’m working on a bunch of things we’ll have going on throughout the week.
On Wednesday, June 5th, GLOE is co-hosting the Annual Big Queer Jewish Happy Hour in AdMo. You’re all invited and should come to that!
On Friday, June 7th, we’re having the National Pride Shabbat with Sixth & I and Bet Mishpachah.
Then, Saturday, June 8th is the big whammy day! At 11:30am – everybody should stop by GatherDC because GLOE is going to be having a bagel brunch here. It’s free, and open to anyone in the LGBTQ community and allies. Later on, we’ll have a poster-making event for LGBTQ families, then GLOE is meeting up with the RAC for an event in Dupont, and after that we’ll be marching together in the parade.
On Sunday, June 9th is the Pride Festival and GLOE will have a booth there.
Allie: What’s your favorite Jewish holiday?
Ari: I love Shabbat because of the regularity of it. It’s a reminder that you have to take a break in your life. I grew up observing Shabbat every single week with my family and the rhythm of this was ingrained in me. Finding a way to set aside time to celebrate Shabbat each has definitely been an adjustment as an adult.
Allie: When Jews of DC Gather…
Ari: There’s a lot of schmoozing!
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