Spring might feel light years away, but Tu Bishvat–the Jewish new year for the trees–is right around the corner. While the rest of us are battling with our kids over winter hats and mittens, Israel is gearing up for spring and the blossoming of the trees.
Why celebrate a holiday about trees while it is freezing outside? Well, Tu Bishvat has traditionally been a time to celebrate the gifts of trees and nature–and to think about protecting our environment. Even better, in a religion where holiday foods are often fried in oil or dipped in honey, the traditional foods eaten on Tu Bishvat are primarily fruits that grow on trees like dates, figs, and raisins. Healthy and fiber-filled fun! What more can you ask for?
This year, Tu Bishvat will be on Wednesday, February 4.
Here’s where to celebrate Tu Bishvat, the birthday of the trees, near you:
Tu Bishvat Celebration & Seder
Seders aren’t just for Passover. Celebrate Jewish Earth Day with 10 different fruits, four cups of wine (or grape juice), and blessings. For elementary school-aged kids and up. $10 for synagogue members & $15 for non-members. RSVP requested.
Bay Ridge Jewish Center, Fourth Ave. & 81st St.
RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, Feb. 4 6:30-8:30pm
Tu Bishvat Yoga Class
Parents and kids alike can bend and stretch at a yoga and creative movement class brought to you by PJ Library & Dreamcoat Experience, and also enjoy holiday-themed crafts and stories. Ages 6 & under. $5 for members, $10 for non-members.
Park Slope Jewish Center, 1320 8th Avenue (@ 14th Street & 8th Ave.)
Sunday Feb. 1, 10:30am–Noon
Winter Green Festival: A Tu Bishvat Celebration
Sample holiday foods, make a family tree, and create earth-friendly crafts out of recycled materials.
Fun for all ages, free with museum admission.
Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge St, Lower East Side
Sunday, Feb. 1. 1-4pm
The Cycle of Giving: Tu Bishvat
Trees give us a lot – air, fruit, shade, and more. Learn about the gifts we get from trees and give a little of yourself through hands-on activities. Best for ages 2 -8. Free
The Manny Cantor Center, 197 East Broadway, Lower East Side
Sunday, Feb. 1, 3:30-5:30pm
PJ Library at the Y Presents: How Does Your Garden Grow?
Decorate a flower pot, plant seeds to grow herbs and plants, eat some fruit and listen to stories.
This program is in conjunction with the Y’s Sunday Funday program for children with special needs. RSVP requested. Free.
YM&YWHA of Washington Heights and Inwood, 54 Nagle Ave, Washington Heights
RSVP to: email@example.com
Sunday, Feb. 1, 12-1:30pm
PJ Library Tu Bishvat Celebration
Celebrate the birthday of the trees with a PJ Library storytime, crafts, and a pizza lunch. RSVP Required.
Hollis Hills Jewish Center, 210-10 Union Turnpike, Flushing
RSVP to: firstname.lastname@example.org, (718) 776-3500
Sunday, Feb. 8, 11am
Show Mother Earth some love with planting, crafts, and playtime fun! $10 per family, JCC members free.
Sid Jacobson JCC, 300 Forest Drive, East Hills
Sunday, Jan. 25, 10-11:15am
Tu Bishvat Seder w/ Sifriyat Pijama B’America
Celebrate the birthday of the trees with a Hebrew story time, crafts, and special Tu Bishvat treats. Free.
Mid Island Y JCC, 45 Manetto Hill Road, Plainview
Sunday, Feb. 1, 4-5pm
Happy Birthday Trees..A Tu Bishvat Celebration For Kids
Celebrate the new year for trees with stories, crafts, and a delicious fruit bar. For children up to age 6. RSVP requested. Free
Central Synagogue of Nassau County/Congregation Beth Emeth, 430 DeMott Ave., Rockville Centre
RSVP to Joy at 766-6426 or email@example.com
Wednesday., Feb. 4, 6-7pm
Family Fun for Tu Bishvat
Join JWOW (Jewish Without Walls) for a fun-filled family program. Plant parsley, make bird feeders, taste fruits from Israel, and make a tree-themed craft project. For children ages 10 and under.
Ivy League School & Day Camp, 211 Brooksite Drive, Smithtown
Sunday, February 1, 2-3pm
J-Baby: Tu Bishvat Pajama Shabbat
Come in your PJ’s and enjoy dinner followed by s’mores and crafts. RSVP requested.
Rosenthal JCC Yorktown Branch, 600 Bear Ridge Road, Pleasantville
RSVP to: (914) 741-0333 x25,firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday, Jan. 30, 5:15-7:30pm
Birthday Party for Tu Bishvat
Everybody loves a birthday party. Enjoy songs, movement, stories, crafts. and birthday cake. For young children up to third grade. RSVP requested. Free.
Temple Beth Abraham, 25 Leroy Avenue, Tarrytown
RSVP to email@example.com, (914) 631-1770
Sunday, Feb. 1, 11:30am-1:30pm