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18 Family-Friendly Ways to Celebrate the Jewish High Holidays in Baltimore

Girl blowing a shofar

September is jam-packed this year. Between the kids heading back to school and the upcoming fall Jewish holidays, we know things are going to be hectic. To make things a bit easier, we’ve rounded up the best, family-friendly ways to celebrate Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur in the Baltimore area. There are outdoor holiday celebrations, apple picking, volunteer opportunities, and even a drumming circle.

We’ve also put together a list of places with family-friendly Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services, where you can bring the kids to hear the sounds of the shofar without worrying about them making noise, running around, or needing a snack. Bonus — many of them are free!


Rosh Hashanah 2018 begins at sundown on Sunday, September 9 and continues until sundown on Tuesday, September 11
Yom Kippur 2018 begins at sundown on Tuesday, September 18 and continues until sundown on Wednesday, September 19


Classes, Activities &  Family Fun

Selichot Drumming Circle
Get ready for the High Holidays with a drumming and rhythm experience led by Rabbi Andy Gordon and Jordan Goodman.
Bolton Street Synagogue, 212 W Cold Spring Ln
Saturday, September 1, 8 p.m.

Musical Selichot and Movie: 93Queen
A screening of the acclaimed movie 93Queen featuring a group of Hasidic women creating the first all-female volunteer ambulance corps in New York City. Musical selichot service to follow led by Cantor Avi Albrecht, Kol Fusion a capella group, and other musical guests. Free and open to the community.
Beth Tfiloh Congregation, 3300 Old Court Rd
Saturday, September 1, 9 – 11:30 p.m
.

Hands-on Holidays
Learn about the fall Jewish holidays at this free, drop-in storytime featuring holiday-themed stories, songs, and snacks for children ages 5 and under. Sponsored by Enoch Pratt Library and the JCC. Choose from multiple dates & locations.
Roland Park, 5108 Roland Ave
Wednesday, September, 6, 11 a.m.
Thursday, October 5, 11 a.m.
Light Street, 1251 Light St
Wednesdays, September 12 & October 10, 11:15 a.m.
Westminster Public Library, 50 E. Main St
Thursday, September 7, 10 a.m.
Govans, 5714 Bellona Ave
Friday, September 14, 10:30 a.m.
Canton, 1030 S. Ellwood Ave
Tuesday, October 9, 10:30 a.m.

Pre-Sukkot Family Fruit Picking
Get ready for the harvest festival of Sukkot with fruit picking, stories, and snacks organized by Beth Israel Congregation. Families will also have the opportunity to pick additional fruit to donate to those in need. Register online.
Baugher’s Orchard and Farm, 1015 Baugher Rd, Westminster
Sunday, September 16, 10 a.m.

JVC Day to Unite
This community-wide volunteer day is a great way to kick off the Jewish New Year. Choose from a variety of volunteer opportunities including options for families with young children. Register online.
Sunday, September 16

Sukkot at The Adventure Park
Join Suburban Orthodox for a fun family adventure at The Adventure Park with zip-lining, climbing, a kiddie carnival, Jewish music, a kosher food court with sukkahs, and a special glow-in-the-dark climbing experience. Fun for all ages, non-climbers, and grandparents too! Register online.
The Adventure Park at Sandy Spring, 16701 Norwood Rd
Wednesday, September 26, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Sukkah City
Celebrate the holiday of Sukkot by exploring different sukkahs built on the JCC field and enjoy live music, activities, and sukkah-inspired treats ranging from beer to ice cream sundaes. Fun for all ages. Free and open to all.
Owings Mills JCC Lower Field, 3506 Gwynnbrook Ave
September 27, 4 – 10 p.m.

Harvest Family Farm Festival
Celebrate the harvest festival of Sukkot on the farm with nature activities, crafts, animal visits, snacks, and other kinds of family fun.
Pearlstone Center, 5425 Mt. Gilead Rd, Reisterstown
September 30, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Babies, Books & Bagels
Stories, snacks, and crafts for families with babies and toddlers up to 18 months.
Owings Mills JCC, 3506 Gwynnbrook Ave
Sunday, September 30, 10 a.m.

Tot Time with the J
Get a little shopping done and then bring the kids to this free, interactive story time with songs, puppets, movement, and other kinds of fun.
The Shops at Kenilworth, 800 Kenilworth Dr, Towson
October 3 & 17, 10 a.m.

Family-Friendly Rosh Hashanah & Yom Kippur Services

Rosh Hashanah Under the Stars
Bring your own picnic dinner, blanket, and lawn chairs to this inspirational, family-friendly Rosh Hashanah service led by Baltimore Hebrew Congregation clergy Rabbi Sacks-Kohen and Cantor Ellerin. Free and open to all, advance registration required.
Oregon Ridge Park, 13555 Beaver Dam Rd, Cockeysville
Sunday, September 9. 4 p.m.

Erev Rosh Hashanah in the Meadow
Join Bolton Street Synagogue for a picnic in the meadow, musical prelude, and outdoor Erev Rosh Hashanah service.
212 W. Cold Spring Lane, Baltimore
Sunday, September 9, 5 p.m.

Beth Israel Congregation -Tot & Family Services
Tot & family services are free, but tickets are required. Register online.
3706 Crondall Lane, Owings Mills
Tot Service
A creative, fun, and educational holiday experience for preschoolers and their grown-ups.
Rosh Hashanah – 1st day, Monday, September 10, 10:15 a.m
Rosh Hashanah – 2nd day, Tuesday, September 11, 10:45 a.m.
Yom Kippur, Wednesday, September 19, 10:45 a.m.

Family Service
A participatory service for families with children ages 5 – 12 led by Rabbi Rachel Blatt.
Rosh Hashanah – 1st day, Monday, September 10, 10:30 a.m
Yom Kippur, Wednesday, September 19, 11 a.m.

Kol HaLev Family-Friendly Community Services
Services are free, but advance registration is required.
The Church of the Holy Comforter (CHC), 130 W. Seminary Ave, Lutherville
Rosh Hashanah – 1st day, Monday, September 10, 10 a.m,
Yom Kippur, Wednesday, September 19, 10 a.m.

Bolton Street Synagogue High Holiday Family Services
A new service for families with young children with singing, prayers, and a story. Free and open to all.
Bolton Street Synagogue, 212 W. Cold Spring Lane, Baltimore
Rosh Hashanah, Monday, September 10, 2:30 p.m.
Yom Kippur, Wednesday, September 19, 2:30 p.m.

Beth Tfiloh High Holiday Preschool Family Services
An age-appropriate, family service for preschoolers and their families followed by a late lunch for the kids. Register online.
Rosh Hashanah, Monday, and Tuesday, September 10 & 11, 11:30 a.m. – Noon
Yom Kippur, Wednesday, September 19, 11:30 a.m. – Noon
Beth Tfiloh Congregation Tuvin Hall, 3300 Old Court Rd

Beth Tfiloh Family Shofar Blowing
Families with children from babies through grade 7 are invited to hear the sounding of the shofar in the courtyard.
Beth Tfiloh Congregation Courtyard, 3300 Old Court Road, 21208
Monday, September 10, 10 a.m.

High Holidays at Hinenu: The Baltimore Justice Shtebl
Joyful services full of music, poetry, and songs followed by an optional community-wide potluck lunch. Free and open to all. Advance registration requested. Childcare available.
Rosh Hashanah, Monday, September 10, 9:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Yom Kippur, Wednesday, September 19, 9:30 – 1:30 p.m.

Brought to you in partnership with the Macks Center for Jewish Education

The opinions expressed here are the personal views of the author. Comments are moderated, so use your inside voices, keep your hands to yourself, and no, we're not interested in herbal supplements.

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