I usually stick with the things that are a bit old but since yesterday was the last day of Sukkot (shemini atzeret) and I live in NYC, I thought this would be a nice article about Sukkot to post.
Sukkah City: Inside the structures where Jewish families celebrate Sukkot
From Crown Heights to Borough Park to the upper East Side, in Riverdale, Kew Gardens and, of course, South Williamsburg, the sounds of song and dance coming from wooden boxes that look like sheds have given the city’s Jewish neighborhoods the air of feast, festival and joy.
The boxes, some in backyards or on the street, others replacing upper floor terraces, are sukkahs, wood-plank temporary shelters where for one week Orthodox families eat all of their meals and are encouraged to sleep. Representing the same type of shelters that housed the Jews who won freedom from Egypt in the time of Moses, a sukkah symbolizes the nomadic homes built in the desert as the Jews made their trek to the Holy Land. Sukkot, the week-long holiday when sukkahs are built, ending today, is a type of Jewish Thanksgiving, saying thanks for life.
“The central tenet of Judaism is to rejoice, be happy and celebrate life,” says Rabbi Joshua Metzger, director of the Chabad Lubavitch of Midtown Manhattan, whose group set up a sukkah in Bryant Park. “A sukkah is left open at the top because ultimately we are all under the protection of God, who is the real security over our heads.” [see rest here]