What looks like an easy drive from Carmiel to Kibbutz Hannaton, the only Masorti kibbutz in Israel, is actually a grueling bike ride, climbing over 1,600 feet! When the climbing finally peaked, we rode through the neighboring Arab village of Kafr Manda, and then turned uphill, overlooking the beautiful Eshkol Reservoir.
As the Ramah Riders pulled into the kibbutz, we were greeted by members with cold water and snacks, and a hot, satisfying lunch.
We divided into four groups and toured the kibbutz after lunch, hosted by members who explained the inspiring story of the kibbutz’s renewal. Hannaton, down to only six families three years ago, now has thirty-five families and is hoping to welcome up to ten more in the coming year.
Dedicated to religious pluralism and personal choice, members find ways to reach compromises on educational standards for children, Shabbat observance in public, and other matters dealing with public Jewish life.
Many of the members had Ramah connections. The large contingent of Riders from Ramah Berkshires were delighted to see kibbutz member Debbie Perla, daughter of Joy and Bob (z”l) Perla, active Ramah alumni.
As we left Hannaton, we offered kibbutz members our good wishes for success, and promised to come back and visit.