25th of Av, 5774
Parashat Re'eh


Sukkah :: The Booth

Sukkah

The Sukkah is the temporary booth that we use uring the holiday of Sukkot. The only rules about building a Sukkah are that it must have at least three sides, and we must be able to see through the S’chach (the “ceiling” of the Sukkah), so that the stars are visible at night. The Sukkah should also be large enough for several people (your family and your guests).

A S’chach is traditionally made up of palm fronds, but can be made from the branches of any tree, as long as it is live when it is cut. The branches that are used should provide shade from the sun but not enough to prevent the rain from coming through.

The material for the walls of the Sukkah are not specified, so you can use your imagination and have some fun.

Some people have a tradition of building a Sukkah so that it resembles one of the letters of the word Sukkah.

The Samech, (Samech [Hebrew]) is a closed Sukkah. It has a moveable side (usually a sheet) for a door.

The Kaf (Kaf [Hebrew]) is a three-sided Sukkah.

The Hay (Hey [Hebrew]) is a Sukkah that has a partial opening on one of the three sides.

What do we do in the Sukkah?

During Sukkot we eat, drink and study in the Sukkah. Some people who live in areas that is it warm enough evenings sleep in the Sukkah. Check with your Rabbi as customs vary.

Decorating the Sukkah

Many people decorate the Sukkah with flowers, strings of beads, artificial fruits, and other ornaments. Some families take white sheets and hang them inside to remember the clouds that surrounded us during our travels in the wildreness before we reached the land of Israel. Have fun decorating your Sukkah!