O'Dowd Student News and Muse

The Crozier

O'Dowd Student News and Muse

The Crozier

O'Dowd Student News and Muse

The Crozier

The Sweet Celebration of Rosh Hashanah

The+Sweet+Celebration+of+Rosh+Hashanah

As the leaves begin to fall and the air starts to cool, many Jews celebrate the Jewish New Year in a holiday called Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Hashanah, meaning “head of the year” in Hebrew, signifies a new beginning and a chance to leave mistakes made in the past year behind. It’s a chance for festivity, gratitude, and the celebration of togetherness with friends and family. For many, the celebration, beginning at sundown this year on September 15, involves many symbolic foods. Sweet foods are very important, as it is widely believed that eating sweets will lead to a sweet new year. Overall, Rosh Hashanah is a day of fun, food, and festivities to ring in the new year and hope for a sweet year to come.

For many families, time spent with family and friends is an important part of the holiday. Eliza van de Water ‘25 shared how her family celebrates Rosh Hashanah. Typically, they go to Lake Merritt with family and friends and do lake cleanups, then take pieces of bread and throw them in the lake. The bread-throwing symbolizes letting go of mistakes from the past year. Additionally, Eliza’s family has dinner together, where they eat apples and honey, and circular challah. In Eliza’s family, food is also an essential part of their celebration and generally allows them to come together and celebrate the new year.

Felix Davis ‘25 explained his celebration of Rosh Hashanah. This year, they had dinner with family and friends, followed by going to the lake and throwing bread in the water. Similarly to Eliza’s family, there are many shared traditions involving eating and letting go of the past year. Generally, Rosh Hashanah is a chance for families to join together and celebrate each other, their mistakes, their accomplishments, and the possibilities to come in the following year.

Finally, Maya Udkow ‘25 shared her family’s celebration of Rosh Hashanah, which primarily consisted of a big family dinner. Her family ate apples and honey, round challah, pomegranates, and other sweet and comforting foods. Food is one of the most important parts of her family’s celebration because it allows them to come together and share their love through food.

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, commemorates a sweet start to the new year. Allowing people to let go of mistakes from the last year, Rosh Hashanah offers an opportunity to learn from their past actions and have a fresh start.

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About the Contributor
Maya Udkow, Contributor
Maya Udkow is 16 years old and currently a junior at Bishop O'Dowd High School in Oakland, California. Maya went to Redwood Day for middle school, where she participated in the class council and the Jewish club. At Bishop O'Dowd, she is a member of the Jewish club, is a class representative, and is passionate about being an active member of her community. She is creative and artistic and loves drawing, painting, and writing; she has taken art classes for ten years and has even written her own books. In her free time, Maya loves spending time with her friends, doing art, reading, walking her dog, and exploring Northern California.

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