Williamsburg Hasids Use Beards to Reach “Hipsters”

May 23, 2013 | Andy Cush

Perhaps inspired by the Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn’s recent forays into so-called “hipsterdom,” a Jewish group has launched a campaign called “Unite the Beards,” aiming to bring Williamsburg’s hairy masses closer to Hasidic Judaism. In the video above, with the tagline “Hasid and hipster, not as different as you think,” four white guys in various stages of beardliness discuss their relationships and perceptions of Brooklyn’s Hasidic community. At the end, everyone seems to agree that a uniting of the beards is in order.

The video served to promote an event at the Chabad of North Brooklyn this week aimed at opening up Hasidim to the rest of the community. According to the New York Timesthere was nary a “hipster” in sight. Rabbi Shmuly Lein provided some insight. “It depends on what you define as a hipster,” he said. “Not every hipster has a beard; not every beard has a Hasid.”

“It’s true, we did not get any motorcycle hipsters with tattoos and big beards – no over-the-top-looking hipsters,” he added, but people like that are “more in Bushwick now, not as much on Bedford.”