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Lag BaOmer

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Lag BaOmer: the 33rd day of the Omer, a minor festival falling between Passover and Shavuot, commemorating the end of a plague which killed thousands of Rabbi Akiva’s students; also the yahrzeit of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, author of the Zohar
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Walk around any town in Israel in the days leading up to Lag B’Omer, and you’ll know the holiday is approaching by the bands of children collecting wood.
Bringing inspiration and Jewish pride to some 40 percent of Aussie and Kiwi Jews
MELBOURNE, Australia—From Dunedin on the southern tip of New Zealand to Townsville in Australia’s tropical north, they came together on Lag BaOmer as “one people with one heart.” The tough coronavirus lockdowns since mid-March down under haven’t dampened ...
How the far-flung Auckland community is keeping together and apart during the pandemic
After last Yom Kippur, as the community members of Chabad of Auckland, New Zealand, gathered together to break the fast, one congregant rose, telling those gathered: “If it weren’t for Chabad, I wouldn’t have been at synagogue today. I would have been at ...
Finding safe and inventive ways to celebrate in a most unusual year
Scenes of families crowding carnival lawns, jumping merrymakers dancing around bonfires, and large outdoor Jewish concerts are the usual fare for the joyous and deeply spiritual holiday of Lag BaOmer that kicks off the summer season for the Jewish communi...
Annual influx of Jews of all backgrounds from Israel and abroad
Most Chabad centers host large annual get-togethers, including festival celebrations, High Holiday services, Chanukah menorah-lightings, fundraising dinners and, of course, their ever-expanding Passover Seders, where attendance topped out this year at aro...
Record attendance at resting place of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai
With the rising threat of war between Israel and its enemies to the north, hundreds of thousands streamed to the village of Meron, Israel, Wednesday night and Thursday to celebrate the annual Lag BaOmer festival at the resting place of the great sage, Rab...
Chabad educator in Short Hills, N.J., describes strategies to capture young attention spans
For Hebrew-school educators, Lag BaOmer presents some unique challenges. It comes as the school year is winding down to a close, competing with end-of-year exams, field trips and sports events—not to mention students with spring fever. Then there’s the st...
A great turnout is expected in a show of unity in the Hakhel year
What began as a community gathering in a local park with 100 attendees has since transformed into a citywide celebration of Jewish pride and unity. For the past 11 years, Rabbi Gedaliah and Shevy Lowenstein have been hosting a Lag BaOmer festival in their...
Parades, bonfires and special events, with a focus on children
Lag BaOmer is a day of rejoicing and celebration for Jews around the world. But in Israel there is a special ta’am, or “flavor,” as Jews of all ages and backgrounds gather together throughout the country—at night and into the day—in festive displays of Je...
Relishing a joyful holiday with something for everyone in honor of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai
As I write, my shoulders are sagging and my knees are aching. We just spent an intense four hours out in the sun (warm for the first time this year) enjoying a Lag BaOmer celebration that we will remember for a long time. We started out from home around 3...
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