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Other Holidays and Celebrations

Sukkot
One of the highlights of the Narayever year is our joyous Sukkot celebration. Preparation to fulfill the Mitzvah of Hiddur Sukkah, beautifying the Sukkah, begins each fall with our open crafts studio.  
On Sukkot morning after parading around the shul to the sweet smell of the lulav and etrog during services, Narayever members enjoy seeing how many Narayeverites can squeeze into the Sukkah.  Our Sukkot Kiddush harvest lunches, cooked with locally sourced ingredients, are delicious and nutritious.

Simchat Torah
The Narayever Simchat Torah celebration begins in the evening with a program for young families during which the Torah is unscrolled and children are surrounded by the beauty and sweetness of the Torah. Singing and dancing inside and outside of the shul follow while the community rejoices. The next morning, services are quieter, and everyone present has the opportunity to cradle a Torah during the Hakafot. For those in the know, a long-anticipated moment arrives during the reading of Bereshit when the Rabbi honours the Hatan and Kalah Torah for their contributions to the shul community. Join us and discover the joy of marking the beginning of a new Torah cycle with us.

Chanukah
Eating latkes and applesauce, singing, spinning dreidels, and lighting candles are traditions at our Hanukkah party. We may celebrate by making light filled crafts, eating meals from around the world or listening as Klezmer musicians rock the shul with tunes and dances in English, Hebrew, Yiddish, French and Ladino. We have even celebrated with talks connecting fossil fuel consumption to Hanukkah or seeing the light of Hanukkah as a reminder of the possibility of transforming our despair through tikkun olam. Hanukkah 2020 was tempered by the Covid-19 quarantine, nonetheless, joy and gratitude in seeing each other and celebrating together radiated online as we listened to Sabrina and the Friedman family singers.  See you in 2022 at the shul!

Tu B'Shvat
The Narayever Tu B’Shvat seder is not to be missed. In the midst of winter, we look toward the coming of spring with a seder designed specially for the Narayever that combines the traditional mystic elements of this special day with meditations on personal growth, social justice and the environment. Our Tefillah coach, Ruth Rohn, and Sabrina Friedman, Director of Family and Youth Engagement lead a beautiful and dynamic all ages Tu Bishvat Seder. All of our senses are engaged; hearing through song, story and discussion, taste with ritual foods including the local and final taste of the seder, apples dipped in maple syrup. Sight and touch are activated by picture books, drawing, and the act of decorating and planting seeds in mini greenhouses upcycled from plastic clamshells. The invisible is sensed when spice sachets are filled to carry us forward to Havdalah, and of course movement is sprinkled throughout. 

Purim
The Narayever Purim celebration is legendary – for its raucous Purim spiel, inventive costumes, and carnival games and delicious treats. Preparation begins months earlier as the script is written, auditions held, and rehearsals begin for the spiel.  The community gets into high gear as Purim approaches and our volunteer leyners practice each perek of Megillat Esther. The B’nei Mitzvah class prepares to raise money for tzedakah by preparing mishloach manot including learning to bake hamantaschen. Narayever youth leaders make the games and run the Purim Carnival. Help us prepare by sharing your musical, theatrical or baking talents or simply show off your costume and come and listen to the Megillah, watch our always zany spiel, and taste delicious, Narayever-made organic hamantaschen.

Wed, May 12 2021 1 Sivan 5781