"They tried to kill us...we won...let's eat." (Alan King)
The Jewish year is filled with sacred moments for reflection and celebration. In THE TENT, we embrace all of these opportunities to give thanks and connect with one another, our Judaism, our God and our world.
From the High Holy Days (the Days of AWE-some) to the Shalosh Regalim (Passover, Shavuot and Sukkot) to the minor holidays of Hanukkah and Purim, we strive to empower all those in THE TENT to make meaningful connections to each celebration and find ways to bring the joy of the festivals into their families, homes and lives.
Please note: We are always growing and changing and not all of the services and activities listed here are available at this time.
Click on each image to learn more and RSVP.
Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, is a fall holiday, taking place at the beginning of the month of Tishrei, which is actually the seventh month of the Jewish year (counting from Nisan in the spring).
It is both a time of rejoicing and of serious introspection, a time to celebrate the completion of another year while also taking stock of one's life.
The culmination of the Yamim Noraim (Days of Awe) is the fast day of Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement).
This is the day at the conclusion of which, according to tradition, God seals the Books of Life and Death for the coming year. The day is devoted to communal repentance for sins committed over the course of the previous year. Because of the nature of Yom Kippur and its associated rituals, it is the most solemn day in the Jewish calendar.
THE DAYS OF
In THE TENT we don't have High Holy Day tickets. We don't believe in pay to pray. Instead we offer meaningful, song-filled and reflective High Holy Day experiences open to the entire community.
Prayer is hard, especially on days like Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur when long services are coupled with weighty and sometimes troubling theologies and philosophies. To address these challenges we strive to make our services, joyful, accessible and meaningful.
Our services then celebrate the rich traditions that have grown since the inception of the holidays while honoring where we are as passionate, progressive and pluralistic Jews.
We try and make all of our services "family-friendly." Children of all ages are not only invited but encouraged to come.
SUKKOT & SIMCHAT TORAH
Beginning five days after Yom Kippur, Sukkot is named after the booths or huts (sukkot in Hebrew) in which Jews are supposed to dwell during this week-long celebration.
According to rabbinic tradition, these flimsy sukkot represent the huts in which the Israelites dwelt during their forty years of wandering in the desert after escaping from slavery in Egypt. The festival of Sukkot is one of the three great pilgrimage festivals (chaggim or regalim) of the Jewish year.
Simchat Torah is a celebratory Jewish holiday that marks the completion of the annual Torah reading cycle. Simchat Torah literally means "Rejoicing in the Law" in Hebrew.
Throughout the year, a set portion of the Torah is read each week. On Simchat Torah that cycle is finished when the last verses of Deuteronomy are read. The first few verses of Genesis are read immediately afterward, thereby starting the cycle again. For this reason, Simchat Torah is a joyous holiday celebrating having completed the study of God's word and looking forward to hearing those words again during the coming year.
On Sukkot THE TENT takes our celebrations out into the sukkah enjoying singing, laughing and learning with lulav and etrog. We especially love enjoying fresh fruits and vegetables from local organic farms.
On Simchat Torah we get things rocking as we sing and dance, celebrating the ending and beginning again of the weekly Torah reading.
Hanukkah, or the Festival of Rededication, celebrates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after its defilement by the Syrian Greeks in 164 BCE.
Although it is a late addition to the Jewish liturgical calendar, the eight-day festival of Hanukkah has become a beloved and joyous holiday. It is also known as the Festival of Lights and takes place in December, at the time of year when the days are shortest in the northern hemisphere.
On Hanukkah we celebrate all the light we each bring into each others' lives at candle lighting parties. We also re-dedicate ourselves to bringing light into the world by participating in Tikkun Olam (repairing the world.)
The festival of Purim is celebrated every year on the 14th of the Hebrew month of Adar (late winter/early spring). It commemorates the salvation of the Jewish people in ancient Persia from Haman’s plot “to destroy, kill and annihilate all the Jews, young and old, infants and women, in a single day.”
Purim is a blast in THE TENT. We have a huge costume contest, read Megillah (the story of Esther) and eat lots of Hamantaschen. As a community that cares about one another we make sure that everyone gets Mishloach Manot - Purim gifts.
Passover, or Pesach in Hebrew, is one of the three major pilgrimage festivals of ancient Israel. Originally a combination of a couple of different spring festivals, it is a commemoration of the Exodus from Egypt--especially the night when God "passed over" the houses of the Israelites during the tenth plague--and of the following day, when the Israelites had to leave Egypt hurriedly. Centered on the family or communal celebration of the seder (ritual meal), Passover is one of the most beloved of all Jewish holidays.
On Passover, THE TENT helps you prepare for the holiday and celebrate with your community.
Shavuot, the "Feast of Weeks,” is celebrated seven weeks after Pesach (Passover). Since the counting of this period (sefirat ha-omer) begins on the second evening of Pesach, Shavuot takes place exactly 50 days after the (first) seder. Hence, following the Greek word for “fifty,” Shavuot is also referred to sometimes as Pentecost. Although its origins are to be found in an ancient grain harvest festival, Shavuot has been identified since biblical times with the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai.
It's traditional on Shavuot to eat dairy foods and our favorite dairy food is ice cream!
Come Into The Tent for a family Shavuot Ice Cream Party on Sunday, May 20 from 2-3pm! We'll meet at the playground at the Parkland Recreational Center to share some learning and lots of ice cream! Just look for the OHEL tent! Click here to RSVP.