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Purim celebrates the courage of Queen Esther, who pleaded before King Ahasuerus to save the Jews of Persia from the destructive plot of the wicked Haman. Drawing on key words from the Scroll of Esther, v’nahafokh hu (the plot was turned on its head), Purim is celebrated as “topsy-turvy day”. Children and adults dress in costume, and the day is marked by feasting and revelry. The four commandments of the holiday include: reading the Megillah (Scroll of Esther), Se’udat Purim (Purim feast), Mishloach Manot (sending gifts of food), and Matanot L’evyonim (charitable gifts to the poor).

At B’nai Israel, children and adults come in costume, and the Megillah is chanted in the evening and morning by teen and adult members of the congregation. Our annual Purim carnival is a real treat, so popular that it is divided into shifts for younger and older children. Our age-appropriate youth services are led by members of the clergy and professional staff with significant participation by the children. The congregation provides opportunities to support community charities.

Mishloah Manot


purim celebrations & services

Purim Spirit Week

Join Sarah Jarvis, Director of Youth Engagement, and B’nai Israel staff and clergy for a week of Purim fun with games, and mitzvot.

Sunday, February 21
Sunday Scare Out Hamen 
Make the most creative grogger with things around your house and post on Facebook.

Monday, February 22
Making Monday  
Hamentaschen making class 

Tuesday, February 23
Tzedakah Tuesday 
Make a Mishloach Manot basket for someone and bring it to them.

Wednesday, February 24 
We Can’t Wait to See You Wednesday 
Come to B’nai to pick up your "Carnival in a Box" and wave hi to Sarah! Carnival in a Box includes prizes, activities, and snacks! $10/box, $25 family max. 
Purchase information will be sent via email. 

Thursday, February 25
Show us your awesome costume and be a part of our virtual costume contest on B’nai Israel's social media.

Youth & Family service

Virtual Megillah Reading  & Virtual Purim Spiel "A Peter Pan Purim" 
Written, Directed and Produced by Naomi Gerstenblith
Stage Managers: Aaron Adams & Maddy Pollack

Thursday, February 25
6:15 PM
Join us virtually to hear the Megillah followed by a special viewing of our virtual Purim spiel—A Peter Pan Purim! Join King Peter Pachashverosh, Tinkerkvell, Captain Haman Hook and the rest of the crew as we travel back to Shushanland! You’ll recognize the tunes as we tell the story of Purim unlike any way we’ve done before.   Click here for access.

Interested in reading a few verses of the Megillah? Contact Rabbi Penina Alexander (

Traditional Megillah Reading (In-person and Virtual)

Thursday, February 25
7:15 PM
Fulfill the mitzvah of hearing Megillat Esther after our Ma’ariv (evening) service.  If you’d like to attend in person, please email Allison Karasik.  Click here for safety protocols. Click here for virtual access.

Wed, January 20 2021 7 Shevat 5781