Sukkot Celebrations at Merkaz Harav Yeshiva

Thousands join in lively "simchat beit hasho'eva" celebrations at Jerusalem's Merkaz Harav yeshiva.

Yoni Kempinski and Ari Soffer ,

Succot at Mercaz Harav
Succot at Mercaz Harav
Hezki Ezra

Of all the Jewish festivals, the Torah singles out Sukkot as the most joyous - repeatedly calling for "rejoicing" during the seven day (eight for Jews outside of Israel) festival, which marks the start of a new year and the traditional grain harvest, following the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur.

Students, graduates, rabbis and visitors at the Merkaz Harav Yeshiva exhibited their joy during the annual "simchat beit hasho'eva" celebrations last night, as they danced to the tunes of clarinetist Musa Berlin and Akiva Margaliut "who show up every year to bring joy to the people of Israel."

Among other notables present, Rosh Yeshiva (dean) Rabbi Yaakov Shapira was joined on the dancefloor by three Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) candidates for the Jerusalem municipal elections: Dov Kalmanovitch, Hertzl Yehezkel and Raz Kiel.