Holiday Gifts

Jewish Holidays 2024: What’s Coming Up Next & What You Need to Know

While most of the world goes by the Gregorian calendar, Jewish holidays and time are measured in an entirely different way. The Hebrew calendar (also known as the Jewish calendar) is a lunar calendar that dates back thousands of years; many of the months and occasions that comprise the calendar can be found in the Torah. 

According to the Jewish calendar, each day starts at dusk and ends at the next sunset. With more than a dozen celebrations, observances, and commemorations throughout each Jewish year, it can be hard to keep track of every single one. We have compiled every upcoming Jewish observance and listed its Hebrew and Gregorian dates, as well as links to additional resources to help guide you through 5784, so that you and your loved ones can have a meaningful year!

Please note these dates are only for Jewish communities who live outside of the Land of Israel.

Shabbat
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Day of Rest

Begins at dusk every Friday
Ends at sundown every Saturday

 

Did you know that Shabbat is considered a holiday? In fact, it's in some ways the most powerful holiday that can over-ride others so to speak, like pushing off a fast day (except Yom Kippur) to Sunday if it would normally land on Shabbat. Many people have strong traditions on Shabbat, with special foods, synagogue services, family time, Torah learning, prayers and songs, and of course rest.

It has the most prohibitions on work compared even to other biblical holidays, as in addition to rich spiritual depth, one of the stated reasons for it is to remember the forced work of Egyptian slavery. Shabbat is a day of liberation from foreign or external pressures.

Traditional Greetings: Shabbat Shalom – Peaceful Shabbat! Gut Shabbos – Good Shabbat! 

Read about everything you need for Shabbat & shop Shabbat essentials here!

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Passover
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The Festival of Matzah and Freedom

Begins at sundown on Monday, April 22, 2024 
Ends at sundown on Tuesday, April 30, 2024
Hebrew Date: 15-22 Nisan 5784

 

Passover is an eight-day festival that commemorates the Israelites’ journey out of slavery in Egypt and into the Land of Israel. Throughout all eight days of the holiday, also known in Hebrew as Pesach, it is forbidden to eat wheat, barley, oats, rye, or spelt. On the first two nights, family and friends traditionally gather for the Seder in which the Exodus story is recounted following a haggadah and many symbolic foods, followed by an extravagant meal.

It is a holiday to commemorate liberation, and is marked by eating matzah. It also begins the Counting of the Omer from the 2nd day of Passover.

Traditional Greetings: Chag Pesach sameach – Happy Passover; Chag kasher v’sameach – Have a kosher and happy holiday; A kosher'n Pesach – Have a kosher Passover (Yiddish)

Read more about Passover & shop Passover gifts and essentials here!

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Yom HaShoah
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Holocaust Remembrance Day

Begins at sundown on Sunday, May 5, 2024
Ends at sundown on Monday, May 6, 2024
Hebrew Date: 27 Nisan 5784

 

Yom HaShoah is Israel's official Holocaust Remembrance Day, and is also commemorated by many Jewish communities in the diaspora. Its date was specifically chosen to coincide with the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, in order to highlight Jewish resistance and bravery, and because it's halfway between Passover and Israel's Independence Day.

Read more about Israel's Yom HaShoah commemorations & shop our Jewish memorial items here!

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Yom HaZikaron
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Israel’s Memorial Day

Begins at sundown on Sunday, May 12, 2024
Ends at sundown on Monday, May 13, 2024
Hebrew Date: 4 Iyar 5784

 

Yom HaZikaron is Israel’s Memorial Day for fallen soldiers and victims of terrorism. In Israel, there are dozens of ceremonies that honor the more than 23,000 people that lost their lives protecting and defending the State of Israel, as well as those who died in terror attacks. A siren is sounded across the entire country for one minute at 8 p.m. and 10 a.m., in which everyone stands still to honor and remember those lives. 

Remember Israel's fallen with traditional memorial candles here!

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Yom Ha’Atzmaut
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Israel’s Independence Day

Begins at sundown on Monday, May 13, 2024
Ends at sundown on Tuesday, May 14, 2024
Hebrew date: 5 Iyar 5784

 

Yom Ha’Atzmaut celebrates the day that David Ben-Gurion declared Israel’s independence in 1948. Israelis celebrate at parties, ceremonies, barbecues, parades, and more. In cities all across Israel, there will be parades held and flags waving. 

Traditional Greeting: Yom Ha’Atzmaut sameach – Happy Independence Day!

Read some amazing facts about the miracle of Israel & shop Israeli Independence Day gifts here!

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Lag B’Omer
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33rd day of Counting the Omer

Begins at sundown on Saturday, May 25, 2024
Ends at sundown on Sunday, May 26, 2024
Hebrew date: 18 Iyar 5784

 

Lag B’Omer occurs on the 33rd day of the Omer. The holiday commemorates the end of a plague that killed 24,000 Torah scholars. With kabbalistic roots, it is also believed by some to be the day that the Jewish people discovered the wisdom of the Zohar.

Many communities celebrate by having a bonfire and singing, and it is perhaps the most popular day for Jewish weddings. Because it is an end of the mourning period for 24,000 students, people are finally allowed to listen to music and get haircuts and get married, activities that are traditionally prohibited during the Omer up to this point. As it will fall on Shabbat 2024, however, this aspect of the celebration will not occur.

Traditional Greeting: Chag sameach – Happy holiday!  

Read more about Lag B'Omer & shop Kabbalah gifts here!

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Shavuot
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Festival of Weeks, the day we received the Torah

Begins at sundown on Tuesday, June 11, 2024
Ends at sundown on Thursday, June 13, 2024
Hebrew date: 6-7 Sivan 5784

 

Shavuot is the day that the Jewish people received the Torah from G-d at Mount Sinai. Many communities celebrate by staying up all night and studying Jewish texts and subjects while eating dairy foods like cheesecake, blintzes, pizza, and more at a Tikkun Leil Shavuot. Special services are also held in synagogue on Shavuot. 

Traditional Greeting: Chag Shavuot sameach – Happy Shavuot!

Read more about Shavuot & shop Torah gifts here!

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Tisha B’Av
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9th of Av, the saddest day of the Jewish calendar

Begins at sundown on Monday, August 12, 2024
Ends at sundown on Tuesday, August 13, 2024
Hebrew date: 9 Av 5784

 

Tisha B’Av is the day that the Jewish people commemorate the destruction of the First and Second Temples and Jerusalem, as well as many other tragedies that have befallen the Jewish people throughout history including the Inquisition and events of the Holocaust. Unlike most other Jewish fasts besides Yom Kippur, people traditionally fast the entire day on Tisha B’Av, in addition to praying to rebuild Jerusalem.

Many believe that Moshiach (the Messiah) will be born on this day.

Read more about Tisha B'Av & remember Jerusalem with Jerusalem gifts here!

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Tu B’Av
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Jewish Day of Love

Begins at sundown on Sunday, August 18, 2024
Ends at sundown on Monday, August 19, 2024
Hebrew date: 15 Av 5784

 

Tu B’Av has been celebrated since the days of the Temple and marked the beginning of the grape harvest. Tu B’Av was also a day when single Jewish women would dress in white and dance in the vineyards, hoping to find a husband. In modern day Israel, Tu B’Av is a popular day for proposals, weddings, and romantic dates. 

Read more about Tu B'Av & shop romantic Jewish gifts here!

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Rosh Hashanah
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The Jewish New Year

Begins at sundown on Wednesday, October 2, 2024
Ends at sundown on Friday, October 4, 2024
Hebrew Date: 1-2 Tishrei 5785

 

Rosh Hashanah is the anniversary of the creation of humanity. Special services are held at synagogues, and many gather with loved ones for festive dinners featuring traditional foods such as apples and honey, round challah, pomegranates, and fish. 

Traditional Greetings: Shana tova - Happy New Year; Shana tova um’tukah - Have a good and sweet New Year; shana tova tikateivu v’teichateimu - Happy New Year! May you be inscribed and sealed [in the Book of Life]; Tizku l'shanim rabot - May you merit many years.

Read more about Rosh Hashanah & shop Rosh Hashanah gifts and essentials here!

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Yom Kippur
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The Day of Atonement

Begins at sundown on Friday, October 11, 2024
Ends at sundown on Saturday, October 12, 2024
Hebrew Date: 10 Tishrei 5785

 

Yom Kippur is the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. It is also one of the two times per year that the Jewish people fast for an entire day. There are evening services (Kol Nidrei) followed by services the next day that last for hours, where special prayers for atonement, repentance, and forgiveness are recited. One's judgement for economic success, marriages, children, and death etc. are decided this day.

Despite the fasting and atoning, it is also considered the happiest day of the year because it is our chance for a clean new slate.

The shofar is blown at the end of the holiday, and once Yom Kippur ends, many families and communities host festive meals to break the 25-hour fast. 

Traditional Greetings: G’mar chatima tova - [Have a] good final sealing [in the Book of Life]; Tzom kal - Have an easy fast. In English, it is also common to say, "Have a meaningful fast."

Read more about Yom Kippur & shop shofars here!

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Sukkot
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Feast of Booths

Begins at sundown on Wednesday, October 16, 2024
Ends at sundown on Wednesday, October 23, 2024
Hebrew Date: 15-21 Tishrei 5785

 

Sukkot is an eight-day festival that historically marked the end of the harvest in Israel that commemorates G-d's protection of the Jewish people in the 4 decades in the desert. The sukkah, the temporary structure that Jewish people build to eat, sleep, and lounge in throughout the festival, is meant to symbolize the huts that the Israelites dwelled in during their journey to Eretz Yisrael (the Land of Israel). During Sukkot, it is also traditional to shake the lulav and etrog. 

Traditional Greetings: Chag sameach!- Happy holiday! Chag Sukkot Sameach - Happy Sukkot!

Read more about Sukkot & shop Sukkot gifts here!

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Shemini Atzeret & Simchat Torah
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"Joy of Torah"; Beginning of a new Torah Reading Cycle

Begins at sundown on Wednesday, October 23, 2024
Ends at sundown on Friday, October 25, 2024
Hebrew Date: 22-23 Tishrei 5785

 

Shemini Atzeret directly follows the end of Sukkot. After weeks and weeks of celebrations, atonement, reflection, and observance, Shemini Atzeret was instituted by the rabbis as an extra day of holiness and kavanah (intention). It is also the first day that the Jewish people begin praying for rain.

The following day, Simchat Torah, is when the cycle of reading the Torah begins back at Bereishit. This is one of the happiest days of the Jewish year and is often marked with celebrations at synagogues where congregants dance, sing, and rejoice in the gift that is the Torah. 

Traditional Greeting: Chag sameach! – Happy holiday! 

Read more about Simchat Torah & shop Torah gifts here!

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Hanukkah
Jewish Holiday Hanukkah holiday with menorah burning candles.

Festival of Lights

Begins at sundown on Wednesday, December 25, 2024
Ends at sundown on Thursday, January 2, 2025
Hebrew Date: 25 Kislev – 2 Tevet 5785

 

Hanukkah (also spelled Chanukah) is an eight-day festival that commemorates the Maccabean revolt and the rededication of the Second Temple. It is the only religious Jewish holiday that does not appear in the Torah.

Also known as the Festival of Lights, Hanukkah is celebrated by lighting one candle for each night of the holiday, using a special candelabra known as a Hanukkah menorah. Fried foods, such as jelly donuts and latkes, are also enjoyed throughout the festival. 

Traditional Greetings: Chag sameach! – Happy holiday!; Chag Chanuka sameach! – Happy Hanukkah! A freilichen Chanukah – Happy Hanukkah! (Yiddish)

Read more about Hanukkah & shop Hanukkah gifts and essentials here!

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Tu BiShvat
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The New Year of the Trees

Begins at sundown on Wednesday, January 24, 2024
Ends at sundown on Thursday, January 25, 2024
Hebrew Date: 15 Shevat 5784

 

Tu BiShvat originates in the Mishnah in the Talmud and was an agricultural holiday in the Land of Israel. Many communities celebrate by honoring the Earth, planting trees, and holding a special Seder to consume the Seven Species of Israel (wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives, dates), as well as other fruits and nuts. In Israel, Tu BiShvat is a day for planting trees and celebrating nature.

Traditional Greeting: Chag sameach – Happy holiday! 

Read more about Tu BiShvat & shop Tu BiShvat gifts here!

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Purim
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Festival of Lots: Deliverance in Exile

Begins at sundown on Saturday, March 23, 2024
Ends at sundown on Sunday, March 24, 2024
Hebrew date: 14 Adar 5784

 

Purim celebrates the survival of the Jewish people, despite Haman, the advisor to the Persian king, trying to kill the Jews in his kingdom. His efforts were thwarted by Mordechai and Esther. Twice during Purim , the story is read aloud at synagogue, known as Megilat Esther, and people use noisemakers to blot out Haman's name. Many people (of all ages) will wear a costume to the service, which is followed by a festive party. Children often celebrate the next day with Purim carnivals. Hamantaschen is traditionally eaten. 

Traditional Greetings: Chag Purim sameach – Happy Purim! A freilichen Purim– Have a kosher Purim (Yiddish)

Read more about Purim & shop Purim gifts here!

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