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Sukkot, a Hebrew word meaning “booths” or “huts,” refers to the annual Jewish festival of giving thanks for a bountiful fall harvest and commemorates the 40 years of Jewish wandering in the desert after the giving of the Torah atop Mt. Sinai.
What is a lulav and etrog? Learn about the customs, ritual objects, and music associated with Sukkot.
As a people with agricultural roots, Jews have found many ways to mark the seasonal and environmental changes that occur throughout the year. Sukkot has numerous other themes and areas of focus that encompass seasonal, historical, and theological perspectives. It is among the festivals that fall in the Hebrew month of Tishrei, emphasizing not only the cycles of the earth, but also the cycles of Jewish life. (The other holidays in Tishrei are Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur, and Simchat Torah.)
The Jewish New Year of the Trees, or Tu BiSh’vat, lends itself to many home observations and activities. Here are some ideas for crafts, planting, quiet activities, and more.
Somehow, it always seems to rain on Sukkot. The week before the holiday usually falls during the first nice days of fall— this year my housemate packed away her summer clothes this past weekend, and I wore jeans instead of shorts for the first time in too long.
Parents and kids can work together to make these pretty lanterns, perfect for decorating the sukkah.