JFS Brings Purim Joy to Older Adults

Volunteers and clients alike donned festive attire for programs held at two residential facilities this year on Purim. From lively skits to reminiscing about traditions, fun was had by all.

The program first told the story of Purim in a skit developed by Volunteer Coordinator Chelsea Karp and implemented thanks to the help of volunteers Eva Derby and Naomi Schachter. It featured the prominent parts of the Purim story in a series of short scenes with plenty of opportunities for participation. Many residents happily read parts while wearing silly costumes, and everyone delighted in spinning the gragger whenever Haman’s name was mentioned.

Once the play was over, Eva addressed the group, sharing some additional details from the megillah that didn’t make it into the play as well as her own recollections from celebrating Purim in Czechoslovakia and Israel. The residents joined in, sharing memories and traditions and, in one man’s case, a special wooden gragger from Israel.

The program continued with popular Purim songs like “Chag Purim” in both Hebrew and English, followed by a rousing rendition of “My hat, it has three corners” where a three-cornered hat was passed around for participants to wear while singing.

People stayed to schmooze and munch on hamentashen – and debate which flavors are “real” – while sharing more stories. When the time came to end the day, smiles remained on everyone’s faces after a well-enjoyed holiday celebration.