Simchat Torah in United States
Many Jewish communities in the United States celebrate Shemini Atzeret (or Shmini Atzeret) and Simchat Torah. Shemini Atzeret is a Jewish holiday dedicated to the love of God. Simchat Torah marks the end of the Sukkot (or Sukkoth) festival.
What do people do?
Simchat Torah is a joyous event. Central rituals for Simchat Torah include reading the Torah by concluding the Book of Deuteronomy and beginning the Book of Genesis. Other activities include performing the hakafot (dancing with the Torah) around the synagogue bimah (elevated area or platform in a Jewish synagogue). Synagogues in cities such as Philadelphia have, in the past, held song and dance events to mark Simchat Torah.
Many Jewish communities in the United States observe Shemini Atzeret on one day and Simchat Torah on the following day. These days are not nationwide public holidays in the USA but some Jewish organizations may be closed or offer a limited service to allow for festivities to occur on this day.
The name "Shmini Atzeret" refers to the eighth day, or the extra day, that brings the seven-day Sukkot period to its state of perfection. Rabbinic tradition teaches that Shemini Atzeret is the day when the world is judged for water, or rainfall, in the upcoming year. It is an important day for agricultural purposes.
Simchat Torah is generally celebrated on the same day as Shemini Atzeret in Israel and among Reform Jewish groups. These two occasions are also observed as two separate days among many Jewish communities outside of Israel.
About Simchat Torah in other countriesRead more about Simchat Torah.
Simchat Torah ObservancesNote: Jewish holidays begin at sundown the day before the date specified for the holiday.
|Weekday||Date||Year||Name||Holiday type||Where it is observed|
|Fri||Oct 12||1990||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 1||1991||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 20||1992||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 8||1993||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Wed||Sep 28||1994||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 17||1995||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 6||1996||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 24||1997||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 13||1998||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 3||1999||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 22||2000||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Wed||Oct 10||2001||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Sep 29||2002||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 19||2003||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 8||2004||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Wed||Oct 26||2005||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 15||2006||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 5||2007||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Wed||Oct 22||2008||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 11||2009||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 1||2010||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 21||2011||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 9||2012||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Sep 27||2013||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 17||2014||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 6||2015||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 25||2016||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Fri||Oct 13||2017||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 2||2018||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Tue||Oct 22||2019||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
|Sun||Oct 11||2020||Simchat Torah||Jewish holiday|
Quick FactsSimchat Torah (Simchas Torah or Simhat Torah) is a Jewish holiday that marks the end of Sukkot and celebrates the completion of the annual reading of the Torah.
Simchat Torah 2015Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Simchat Torah 2016Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Name in other languages
List of dates for other years
- First Day of Sukkot ―Monday, September 28, 2015
- Last Day of Sukkot ―Sunday, October 4, 2015
- Shmini Atzeret ―Monday, October 5, 2015
Other holidays in October 2015 in United States
- Feast of St Francis of Assisi ―Sunday, October 4, 2015
- Shmini Atzeret ―Monday, October 5, 2015
- Leif Erikson Day ―Friday, October 9, 2015
- Columbus Day ―Monday, October 12, 2015
- Muharram ―Thursday, October 15, 2015
- Boss's Day ―Friday, October 16, 2015
- Alaska Day ―Sunday, October 18, 2015
- Alaska Day ―Monday, October 19, 2015
- Nevada Day ―Friday, October 30, 2015
- Halloween ―Saturday, October 31, 2015