A Jewish Celebration: Sukkot
By: Laura C.

The Jewish holiday, Sukkot, is a 7-8 day fall harvest celebration. It commemorates how God freed the Jewish slaves. Sukkot began after the Jews and Moses had spent 40 years wandering aimlessly throughout the forests and deserts of Egypt. When they finally overcame that hardship and took over Israel once more as a Jewish nation, it was decided that a great holiday would be started. Sukkot begins at sundown on the fifteenth day of Tishiri, the Hebrew month. Tishiri is equal to about our September and November. Sukkot takes place only five days after Yom Kippur. This year, Sukkot began on September 26.

To celebrate Sukkot, people sleep in Sukkahs, small huts that are supposed to represent the crudely made shelters that Moses and the Jews had to sleep in. Sukkot means hut in English. People must build the Sukkah directly after Yom Kippur. Sukkahs are decorated with brightly colored fruits, and New Year's cards. You are supposed to try and stay in the Sukkah at all times during Sukkot, but you are encouraged to invite guests over during the holiday. In Hebrew, the guests are called ushpizin.

Sukkot is also a very large feast, with tons of different dishes. Some of them are challah, a type of sugary bread which is dipped in honey, meat stuffed peppers, Tel Aviv chicken, chicken schnitzel, potato knishes, filled zucchini, crumby cauliflower, Israeli salad, apple crisp, Pareve ice cream, and fruit soup. During Sukkot, there are four kinds of branches used for activities and such, they are called the four species. The four species represent the harvest. In Hebrew these are called the Arbah Minim.

The four species are Aravot branches, Luval branches, Etrog fruit, and Haddasim branches. The branches are tied together and called a luval. Next you bless the luval. First you must say a prayer. Then you hold the etrog in one hand, and the luval in the other. When you wave the luval, it shows that you are thanking God, and wishing for rain.

The seventh day of Sukkot is called Hashanah Rabah. Translated in English it means the great help. Before Hashanah Rabah people spend time studying their scripture and praying. The next day (Hosanna Rabah) people walk around the synagogue waving the luval and the etrog. They also say prayers wishing for a good harvest. Then they bind together five of the luval bundles, and beat them on the ground.

Sukkot is a lot like our Thanksgiving holiday. We don't sleep in huts, but we sure do feast! On Sukkot people eat potatoes, different veggies, and meats. The Jews eat chicken on Sukkot, and that is a lot like turkey. Potato knishes are maybe like scalloped or mashed potatoes. The reason they celebrate the holiday is kind of the same to. The people in the Jewish religion celebrate making it out of the great forest; we celebrate making it to the new world, and having peace with the Native Americans.

That is another reason these holidays are the same; the Jews and Moses had made peace once again in Israel. So you see, though one holiday is mainly celebrated by Christians, and the other by people of the Jewish religion, their holidays aren't that different. Sukkot and Thanksgiving are both celebrated with feasts and are a reason to remember how our ancestors overcame such great obstacles.

By Tearny H.

Sukkot started on a Thursday 8 years ago, 5 days after Yom Kipper. It lasts seven days. It was started so people have an opportunity to build relationships.

To celebrate Sukkot, they would drink, eat, play, sing, learn, and sometimes sleep in the sukkah. They put up squash, corn, or esrog and decorated it with decorations we have now, in the sukkah. Each day of Sukkot, 7 souls are present and each person takes their turn to lead the other 6. Some common foods they would eat are stuffed cabbage, harvest vegetable soup, corn bread, and squash stuffed with cranberries. Sukkot is almost the same as Thanksgiving. They eat food we would eat for Thanksgiving. All Jews get together like our family and friends do. And last but not least, Thanksgiving is a Jewish holiday.

By Jayla T.

Do you know how Sukkot became a holiday? It became a holiday when God freed the slaves from slavery in Egypt. After their ancestors left Egypt, they wandered for forty years in the desert before they reached the land of Israel. Along the way, they built temporary homes out of dry palms and branches. Reminding us of their journey and their temporary homes, remember in Sukkot they 'live' for several days in huts made from branches and palms. Sukkot was also an autumn harvest festival. These harvests were always celebrated with great excitement. As a result, they also call Sukkot 'Chag HaAsif' and 'Zman Simchatenu'. Now Sukkot is celebrated for seven days. It is a reminder of what they dealt with in the desert.

They celebrate this special holiday by being with their family, eating, singing, and telling stories. Sukkot is called "The Time of Rejoicing. The decorations and activities that they have are kirigami and Japanese paper cutting. Their food sounds really good. They have casseroles, cooked fruit compotes, vegetable soup, and rice.

Sukkot compares with our Christmas and Thanksgiving. It compares to our Thanksgiving and Christmas because we eat and we are with our family. Sometimes we even tell stories to each other. Sukkot sounds like a really cool holiday.

By Marcus N.

The Festival of Sukkot begins on Tishri 15, the fifth day after Yom Kippur. Sukkot lasts for seven days. The two days following the festival are separate holidays, but are commonly thought of as part of Sukkot.

The word "Sukkot" means "booths," and refers to the temporary dwellings that we are commanded to live in during this holiday. The name of the holiday is frequently translated "The Feast of Tabernacles," which, like many translations of Jewish terms, isn't terribly useful unless you already know what the term is referring to.

The holiday is a forty-year period during which the children of Israel were wandering in the desert, living in temporary shelters. Sukkot is also a harvest festival. The Festival of gathering.

By: Tiffany J.

What is a holiday that is like Thanksgiving ? Sukkot! Sukkot lasts 7 days. Sukkot was founded by the Jewish religion in Egypt.

It is also the 3rd holiday in the Hebrew month. Sukkot is a harvest festival like thanksgiving.

They decorate by putting fruits on the wall. They say its the feast of booths.

Derrick L.

Sukkot is kind of like our Thanksgiving . This holiday started in Egypt . Once it was in the Torah the Jews started sleeping in tents. Sukkot is seven days long. It is the third holiday in the Hebrew month of Tishrei. This holiday is in autumn. It is a feast of booths. They decorated with fruits or New Year cards.