Traditional Jewish dinner held at Wawa in Old City

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- In Old City Philadelphia, there is a new twist on a Friday night tradition.

Members of the Jewish faith merged the practice of their religion with their fondness for a certain food. It was Shabbat at Wawa.

Dozens gathered at the 6th and Chestnut store for a traditional Jewish dinner in a most untraditional spot.

Brian Feldman, Host of Wawa Shabbawa said, "Judaism is part of my identity but being a fan of Wawa is too so when you merge the two you get Wawa Shabbawa.

That's the name of the dinner, performance artist Brian Feldman has given to this unlikely pairing.

The Philly native replaces wine with grape juice and uses soft pretzels instead of Challah.

The point is to make Shabbat dinner fun and accessible to all.

"By doing Shabbat dinner at Wawa it's reminding everyone that Shabbat is wherever people gather," added Brian.

While this is Philly's first, Brian has hosted three Wawa Shabbawas in DC and Florida. He came up with the idea when the convenience store chain opened a location in his neighborhood in DC.

"After I walked in and I looked to my right there were communal tables and I thought to myself this is the perfect place to have a Shabbat dinner," said Brian.

"It integrates the secular and religious in a meaningful way. It engaged me as well," said Ben Behrend of Society Hill.

"I think what he's trying to do is bring people together and show them why we shouldn't think of each other as separate or different or unusual," added Eileen O'Brien of Center City.

Feldman says he doesn't ask store management for permission, but still invites the public through social media. He says like at Wawa all are welcome.
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