Chag Sameach! Shmini Atzeret and Simchat Torah Start Tonight

The eight day festival that consists of Sukkot and Shmini Atzeret/Simchat Torah comes to an end Thursday night, bringing an end to the holiday season and starting the regular year.

In Israel, a popular expression is “Acharei Hachagim” – lets’ wait till after the holidays –  as the entire country seems to put off whatever it can from Rosh Hashanah until the day after Shmini Atzeret/Simchat Torah.

With the Sukkot holiday marking the last of three yearly pilgrimage festivals to Jerusalem and the Holy Temple – preceded by Pesach and Shavuot – and also the end of the Tishrei holidays, Shmini Atzeret, which begins Wednesday evening, is mandated in the Torah as a final “encore” holiday.


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