Kinus Hashluchos to be a “Hybrid” Event, Gala Banquet Canceled

With covid-19 cases continuing to rise in New York, the annual Kinus Hashluchos will be a “hybrid” event, with a both in-person option as well as a fully virtual program. The gala banquet will not be taking place this year.

By Anash.org reporter

With covid-19 cases continuing to rise in New York, the annual Kinus Hashluchos will be a “hybrid” event, with a both in-person option as well as a fully virtual program. The gala banquet will not be taking place this year.

The annual Kinus Hashluchos gathers thousands of shluchos from around the globe for a weekend of inspiration and connection, with workshops, talks, farbrengens and events. On previous years, Crown Heights filled with shluchos who traveled to join the Kinus, which concludes with the grand banquet on Sunday night, a highlight of the weekend.

In 5781, with the covid-19 pandemic still at its heights, both the Kinus Hashluchim and Kinus Hashluchos took place virtually. Shluchim and shluchos joining their respective programs from their home, and the gala banquet was broadcast live with no in-person option.

As vaccines became available, and the pandemic seemed to recede, the Kinus Hashluchim of 5782 was held in person, and shluchim once again filled the streets, shuls and shops of Crown Heights. Since then, however, a new wave of the Omicron variant has spread throughout New York, raising the number of covid-19 cases to previously unseen highs.

With that in mind, and after consulting their medical advisors, the Vaad of the Kinus Hashluchos made the decision to offer the Kinus as a hybrid event, with a in-person option being offered for those who are low-risk, and a fully virtual option for those at risk or uncomfortable to travel.

“Thank you for your incredible patience as we worked hard to figure out the safest and most inclusive way to proceed with the Kinus Hashluchos 5782,” they wrote in a statement.

“The medical professionals who successfully and compassionately guided the Kinus Hashluchim earlier this year explained that the current climate is not safe for visitors who are pregnant, immunocompromised in any way, unvaccinated, generally concerned or at risk of infecting others upon returning home,” they wrote.

In line with their advice, and keeping in mind that many shluchos have already made arrangements to participate in-person while taking precautions in a safe and responsible way, the Kinus will proceed as a hybrid event, the Vaad announced. The hybrid event will be offering a fully virtual event with in-person gatherings throughout the weekend, to ensure that all Shluchos will be able to participate in all parts of the Kinus from home or in Crown Heights.

The Vaad also announced that the annual Gala Banquet, a high point of the Kinus, will not take place this year. It is unclear if a virtual option will be added in its place.

The Kinus will also be offering a fully virtual guest program.

“We look forward to celebrating this Kinus together in good health, with joyful hearts and Moshiach now,” they wrote.

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