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Lag Ba'Omer

Lag Ba’Omer is a holiday that takes place on the 33rd day of the Omer, between Pesach and Shavu’ot. Traditionally, the time of the Omer is a period of mourning, and some Jews refrain from celebrating certain uplifting events and cutting hair. But Lag Ba’Omer is a joyous occasion on which a wedding or haircut may take place.

Some say that Lag Ba’Omer is the yahrzeit of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, an important Mishnaic sage whom many believe wrote the Zohar. It is customary to light bonfires on this day, symbolizing the light that this well-known student of Rabbi Akiva brought into the world and left behind through spiritual illumination. Some also believe that Lag Ba’Omer marks the date that a plague causing the death of 24,000 people—all but five of Rabbi Akiva’s students—ended.

The holiday is referenced in the Talmud, and although the origins of this holiday are unclear, Jews often light bonfires, have picnics, and in Israel, plant trees. Our congregation has a minhag of joining together at a ranch for a picnic, games, songs, and bonfire. We hope you’ll be able to join us.

Wed, November 20 2019 22 Cheshvan 5780