NORWALK, Conn. – The Maritime Aquarium is setting up a traditional Jewish dwelling for visitors to dine and celebrate the Sukkot holiday, from Wednesday, Oct. 8, through Wednesday, Oct. 15.
“Sukkot is a time to go out and celebrate the harvest and to get close to nature,” said Chris Loynd, the aquarium’s marketing director. “The Jewish communities in Connecticut and New York are good friends of The Maritime Aquarium, and as a family attraction focused on the local environment, we are happy to provide a place to have lunch or snacks that accommodates their religious customs.”
Sukkot, a thanksgiving for the harvest, starts on the fifth day after Yom Kippur. In Jewish prayers and literature, it is often called the “season of rejoicing” or “festival of ingathering.”
A hut is temporarily erected in honor of the story that the Israelites were sustained in the desert after being freed from Egyptian slavery. Therefore, celebratory meals are taken in the sukkah.
Rabbi Levi Stone of the Schneerson Center for Jewish Life in Westport helped The Maritime Aquarium to design and build a proper sukkah. It is 12 feet by 20 feet and will be placed outside the seal exhibit on the riverfront courtyard.