The Main Line

The Main Line
Programs in Memory of Joseph H. Levine

Orit Dolgushev
Program Manager, Main Line

Email Orit

Lifelong Learning at Golden Slipper Gems on the Main Line!

At Golden Slipper Gems on the Main Line, located at Adath Israel Synagogue in Merion, participants enjoy a robust lifelong learning program and cultural trips that naturally inspire socialization.

Current Lifelong Learning Offerings

Review our Course Offerings

Spring 2023 Program!

75 Years of Israeli Independence!


Spring 2023 In Person & Zoom Registration (Hybrid)

SPECIAL CLASSES In Honor of Israel’s 75th!

Zoom and In Person!  The Israeli Days of Awe

2 Thursdays April 20 – April 27, 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM – $20

Click to Register for The Israeli Days of Awe!

Instructor: Rabbi Moriah SimonHazani, Golden Slipper Gems Executive Director
The days between Yom Ha’Shoah and Yom Ha’Atzmaut are sometimes called in Israeli society, The Days of Awe.  These are Israel’s national holidays and they are commemorated in homes as well as in the public sphere. The music on the radio is somber, the conversation is focused inward, and it is the time to remember those who are not here anymore. In these two sessions we will explore some of these themes through poetry, short films and works of art.

Zoom!  75 Years of Independent Government and Politics in Israel: Successes and Challenges

 6 Thursdays April 20 –  May 25, 11:15 AM – 12:50 PM – $58

Click to Register for Government and Politics in Israel

Instructor: Dr. Zeev Khanin, Bar-Ilan University and Chief Scientist, Israeli Ministry of Aliya and Integration
Dr. Khanin will address topics such as historical roots of contemporary Israeli government and immigration waves and its role in the formation of Israeli society and politics. He will discuss the political party system in the contemporary Jewish State and touch upon the Israeli society and the Arab-Israeli conflict. He will examine the Israeli political system from a semi-to-liberal democracy angle, while focusing on the constitutional debate and parliamentarism, as well as civil society in Israel.

Elijah: The Amazing Prophet Who Didn’t Die, and Still Lives

Zoom! 6 Mondays April 17 – May 22, 10 AM – 11 AM – $58

Click to Register for Elijah!

Instructor: Rabbi Stephen Karol, Rabbi Emeritus Temple Isaiah, Stony Brook, New York
This course will explore the themes of why Elijah The Prophet appears in only eight chapters in the Hebrew Bible, but his importance and influence extend far beyond it. He is “There” at the end of every Sabbath, has his own cup at every Passover Seder, has a seat reserved for him at every Bris, is the subject of many stories, and will be “There” when the Messiah comes. His greatness is constantly emphasized in Judaism and he takes on a supernatural quality that defies logic but inspires belief.

The Energy of Politics 

Zoom! 6 Mondays April 17 – May 22, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM – $58

Click to Register for The Energy of Politics

Instructor: Instructor: Dr. Mark Thomas, Assistant Professor, LaSalle University

This course will examine how energy influences and is used by governments to drive domestic and foreign policy. We will begin by looking at the politics surrounding fossil fuels and how resource-rich countries, like Saudi Arabia and Russia (Soviet Union) used energy both as a carrot and a stick to influence domestic politics in other countries. We will explore the strategic importance of energy and the development/importance of strategic energy reserves. Finally the course will examine the politics surrounding the environment and energy sector as well as the move toward renewable sources of energy. Discussion on nuclear power as it impacts nuclear proliferation as well as nuclear events will also be included.

Mindfulness: Beginners and Advanced Beginners

Zoom! 6 Tuesdays April 18 – May 23, 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM – $58

Click to Register for Mindfulness!

Instructor: Grady (Henry) Bates. Adjunct Instructor, Mindfulness Institute At Jefferson Hospital

The course will cover the basics of mindfulness practice, including the history and philosophy of mindfulness, the science behind it, and the practical application of mindfulness in everyday life. We will explore the benefits of mindfulness, such as improved concentration, stress reduction, and increased self-awareness. We will also discuss how to cultivate a regular mindfulness practice and how to integrate mindfulness into our daily lives. Grady will  provide guidance and support throughout the course, and will be available to answer questions and provide feedback. He will also provide resources and materials to help members deepen their practice.

A Musical Tour of Remakes, Retellings, and Adaptations

Zoom! 6 Thursdays April 20 – May 25, 10AM – 11 AM – $58

Click to A Musical Tour!

Instructor: Lettie Switzer. Adjunct College Music Instructor, Former Director of Gems in Bucks County

The original is always best, right? Or does a modern spin on a classic give fresh life to an old and outdated tale? In this class we will compare various versions of stage and film musicals: originals, remakes, retellings, and adaptations. We will watch, side by side, scenes of multiple versions of musicals such as West Side Story, Sweeney Todd, Annie, and Cinderella, as well as compare shows that are adaptations of the same story such as Miss Saigon and Madam Butterfly. We will listen to original Broadway and London casts perform, and see how revival casts measure up in their interpretations of shows such as Les Miserables and Spring Awakening. We will focus on the different voices, the acting, the costumes, the sometimes subtle and sometimes drastic changes to the script and storyline. What makes one version better or worse than another? You will be the judge!

5, 6, 7, 8: Dancing Throughout History

Zoom & In Person!  6 Tuesdays April 18 – May 23, 10AM – 11 AM – $58

Click to Register for Dancing Throughout History!

Instructor: Norma Porter, MA, Arts Administrator, Dance Artist, Educator, Writer

This course will take participants through the exciting histories and present-day trends of three major dance techniques – Ballet, Modern, and Jazz/Broadway dance in a series of lectures, video footage and photographs. People from different cultures and generations contributed to the way in which dance functions in today’s society and how art elevates the human experience. Learn about the fascinating and aristocratic history of ballet in Europe and how centuries later groundbreaking American choreographers like Alvin Ailey created dances that were “for the people”.

History of Philadelphia

Zoom & In Person!  6 Tuesdays April 18 – May 23, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM – $58

Click to Register for History of Philadelphia!

Instructor: Jim Segrave-Daly, Local Historian

Join us for a discussion of Philly’s history, from the establishment of the colony of New Sweden in 1638 to William Penn’s founding of one of the most important cities and colonies in North America.

Disney at 100: A Legacy of Magic

Zoom & In Person!  5 Wednesdays April 19 – May 24, 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM – $58  **no class May 10**

Click to Register for Disney at 100!

Instructor: David Greenberg, Associate Professor, University of the Arts and Drexel University

This year marks 100 years since the official date of the creation of the Walt Disney Company. We all know Disney the brand but few of us know much about Disney the man. This series will take a look at Walt Disney, where he came from, how his background shaped the films he produced, and how his legacy has emerged since his passing.



Spring 2023 - In Person Only & Special Programs Registration

  • Individual Course Selection Only

  • Price: $75.00
    Instructor: Elena Drozdova, Artist Elena is back by demand and teaching a course where participants will experiment, hands on, with acrylic paint on Yupo Paper. We will discover how to use the basic techniques of acrylic painting: blending and texturizing. Together we will learn about the secrets of unlikely combinations of dense and fluid colors and use them in paintings against all odds. This course requires no prior experience or skills. Materials included.
  • Price: $58.00
    Instructor: Orit Dolgushev, MSW, Gems ML Manager: Each week, we will meet at a different destination. Members arrive on their own. We will visit places such as The Barnes Arboretum at St. Joseph University, Chanticleer Garden, Shofuso Garden, and more. We will enjoy visiting and revisiting the sites during the spring season. We will breath fresh air, get physical exercise, and ocialize with new and existing members. Weather permitting.
  • Price: $28.00
    Co-owners Kimberley Bezak (OT) and Eleisha Eagle (touring pianist/singer/songwriter) of Shift, a sustainable goods and services store, will do an in-store presentation exclusive for Gems! They will provide participants with an introduction to low-waste living, focusing on the basic principles, and then highlight simple daily shifts that can be implemented to lighten our impact on the planet. After Q&A, there will be a brief tour of the re-fillery. Please join us for a light and delicious lunch at the restaurant Nana’s Kitchen, before the event.
  • By registering for In Person programs: I(we) have been vaccinated for Covid-19. I (we) will not attend the program if I (we) have tested positive for COVID-19, are awaiting test results, or have symptoms of COVID-19. I (we) will not attend the program if I (we) have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. I will contact Orit Dolgushev if I test positive for COVID-19 within 10 days of attending a program.

  • $0.00

Book Club - Zoom
  • April 26, 3 PM

Join us for our discussion of the book The Memory Monster, by Yishai Sarid.

Register for the Book Club  Here!

  • May 24, 3 PM

Join us for our discussion of the book Shanda: A Memoir of Shame and Secrecy, by Letty Cottin Pogrebin.

Register for the Book Club  Here!

  • June 28, 3 PM

Join us for our discussion of the book Interior Chinatown, by Charles Yu.

Register for the Book Club  Here!


Membership Information Form

  • General Information

  • MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • Emergency Contact

  • Demographic Information

    I hereby give Golden Slipper Gems my permission to take pictures of me, and to put the finished pictures in various media outlets including their website, newspapers, magazines, brochures, newsletters, television, videos and other public media outlets. My name may be printed with the picture.

Annual Renewal

  • If all of your information is the same there is no need to fill in the rest of this form. Thank you!

Location & Directions

Adath Israel

Enter the parking lot off of Old Lancaster Road and park as soon as you enter the lot. Enter the front door of the synagogue and you will be at Frankel Hall where courses are held.



When appropriate, Golden Slipper Gems will issue a credit, not a refund.


A course series generally runs between 4 and 8 weeks depending on the site and holiday schedule. Please note that each individual course is sold only on a course basis, Golden Slipper Gems does not sell individual classes. Courses are not pro-rated if you join the course late or you miss a class for any reason.


For out of town guests you may purchase one class for $5.  Guest passes cannot be purchased in lieu of course registration.


Credit will not be given after the first day of classes except in the event of illness or injury. Written documentation from a physician or nurse-practitioner is required.