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Tu B’Av

The Jewish Day of Love

Tucson J Holiday Resource Guide

Tu B’Av starts at sundown on Thursday, August 11 and ends just after sundown on Friday, August 12.

Tu B’Av or the Jewish Day of Love, is celebrated on the 15th day of the Hebrew month of Av. It is both an ancient and modern holiday. Originally a post-biblical day of joy, it served as a matchmaking day for unmarried women during the time of the second temple. It is traditional to eat grapes because this holiday correlates with the grape harvest in which single women would dress in white and dance in the vineyard under a full moon to attract a significant other. For this reason, It has become the Jewish Day of Love, slightly resembling Valentine’s Day here in the US, and is more widely celebrated in Israel.

Here are some ways people celebrate Tu’BAv:

  • Throw a Loving Day Celebration
  • Enjoy a Romantic Comedy
  • Go dancing with friends
  • Plan a date night with someone special
  • Tell people in your life you love them
  • Wear white (In ancient times, this was a costume for those who wanted to marry so no one knew who was rich or poor when they would dance around Jerusalem under the full moon)    

Resources

Purim occurs on the the Hebrew calendar date of Adar 14. Purim is a Jewish holiday which commemorates the saving of the Jewish people from Haman in the ancient Persian Empire, a story recorded in the Biblical Book of Esther. In the synagogue, the Megillah (Scroll) of Esther is read aloud evening and morning. Each time Haman’s name comes up, young and old alike make a clamorous noise to blot it out. A popular noisemaker is the “grogger,” a noisemaker is usually used to make noise. 

More Holiday Resources:

CLICK HERE for a fun 4-minute video from BimBam that tells the story of Purim

Purim is another one of those they-tried-to-kill-us-and-failed holidays. It commemorates the story of Queen Esther, who won a beauty contest, but the prize was to marry the King of Persia. The king decided to follow the advice of his advisor, Haman, to kill all the Jews, of course, not realizing that that included his wife. Then Esther had to convince the King not to go through with his plan. Lucky for us, she convinced him. Phew. And instead Haman got hung in the gallows that he built for the Jews. The celebrations often include Purim Schpiels (A funny skit that tells the Purim story. Often includes dressing up in costumes so some people call it the Jewish Halloween, but really, it’s not.) And lots of dress up! And eating hamentashen (triangle shaped cookies reminiscent of Haman’s hat). Adapted from www.JewBelong.com.

Purim’s Connection to Mental Health from Blue Dove Foundation CLICK HERE

Visit myjewishlearning.com (for adults) or pjlibrary.org (especially for families) for additional information.

Hamantaschen

Hamantaschen are a traditional Purim cookie. They are a triangle shaped pastry with filling. The cookie is very symbolic and is usually interpreted as representing the three cornered hat worn by Haman.  

The J will be selling Hamantaschen from Monday, March 7 through Friday, March 18, while supplies last. 

There are no pre-orders. 

  • 1 cookie, $2
  • 5 cookie pack, $9
  • 10 cookie pack, $18

Wishing you a chag sameach, a happy holiday!

Synagogues in Tucson


Congregation Anshei Israel (Conservative)
(520) 745-5550

Congregation Beit Simcha (Reform)
(520) 276-5675

Congregation Bet Shalom (Traditional Egalitarian)
(520) 577-1171

Beth Shalom Temple Center (Non-denominational)
(520) 648-6690

Congregation Chaverim (Reform)

(520) 320-1015con

Congregation Chofetz Chayim (Orthodox)
(520) 747-7780

The Secular Humanist Jewish Circle 
(520) 296-3762

Temple Emanu-El (Reform)

(520) 327-4501

Institute for Judaic Services and Study (Saddlebrook)
(520) 825-8175

Congregation M’kor Hayim (Reform)
(520) 305-8208

Congregation Or Chadash (Reform)
(520) 512-8500

Chabad of Oro Valley (Chabad)
(520) 477-8672

Chabad of Sierra Vista (Chabad)
(520) 820-6256

The Shul of Tucson (Orthodox)
(520) 326-8362