Sukkot 2017

Community Sukkot Festival

with Camp Tawonga, Be’chol Lashon, Jewish Gateways, Sprout/PJ Library, and Eden Village West

Our 2017 Sukkot Festival honored our ancient agrarian roots and the importance of home and shelter.

We listened and sang-a-long to original, modern, global music by local guitarist Lior Ben-Hur and decorated the JCC sukkah with traditional fruits of the harvest season. We grabbed some pizza and create seasonal art projects curated by Be'chol Lashon, Camp Tawonga, and our in-house artist Heather Ware. 

Sukkot is an annual harvest festival. It could also be thought of as the builder’s festival, a time when we as a community join hands and construct. We come together to make simple frames of wood and roofs covered with palm fronds or other s’chach, which literally means things “grown from the ground”. Usually these structures are very humble and simple in an effort to follow tradition. What could one do though to create an exciting sukkah that still follows the traditional guidelines of kashrut?

We have invited the local design-build firm, CUZO, back this year to re-envision the unique sukkah that they constructed for the JCC East Bay last year – made from reeds and recycled materials.

The JCC sukkah not only seeks to be innovative, but also to recall the tradition of sukkot and its multiple meanings. The inspiration for the roof comes from the teachings of Rabbi Eliezer, says the team’s lead designer Dan Edleson, “There is an interpretation of the Talmud that says the sukkah should be like the clouds. I think when you look up at the roof you really feel that, with the panels almost floating above you.”