High Holidays

The deadline to sign up for High Holiday services has passed.

Become a Makom Member!

Join us outdoors for safe, meaningful, joyous services for Selichot, and on Rosh Hashanah & Yom Kippur!

High Holidays with Makom: sweet, joyful, warm, spiritual

Our uplifting, inspiring High Holiday services will take place under tents in a quiet courtyard near Bathurst and Bloor. We’re offering multiple in-person, outdoor High Holiday service shifts, including traditional services, family services, chanting, and meditation

Traditional services will be led jointly by Rabbi Aaron Levy and Carrie Watkins. Andrea Schaffer will run the family services, Alon Nashman will be leading chanting, and meditation will be guided by Ari Kaplan.

Makom Membership includes High Holiday seats along with other perks throughout the year, and is available for adults, children, and teens. When you sign up as a member, you’ll receive a link to the High Holiday registration form, where you can indicate which services you’d like to attend. (We won’t be selling separate High Holiday tickets.)

Each service will have limited capacity. When you register, you’ll indicate which services you’d like to attend. We’ll try our best to give you spots in your preferred services, but please understand that we’re trying to make in-person High Holiday experiences accessible to as many Makom members as possible under challenging circumstances.

Members who complete the registration form by 9am on Wed, Aug 25 will receive first priority; members who complete the form later than that will be assigned remaining spots on a first-come, first-served basis.

You can become a Makom Member no matter your financial circumstances. Due to the pandemic, we’ve lowered our regular and reduced membership rates. It’s a core Makom value that finances should never be an impediment to Jewish life, so if neither of those amounts is feasible for you, please pay what you can.

If you can afford to contribute more than the regular membership rate, please become a supporting or sustaining member to help keep our community going strong.

All Makom Membership donations are fully tax deductible.

We look forward to welcoming 5782 with you!


FAQ

Q: What do Traditional Services look like at Makom?

A: Makom’s Traditional Services are joyous and uplifting. We encourage you to participate by singing out loud! (Whether you or not you read Hebrew, you can join in by singing “nay nay nay” or drumming on your chair.)

Our Traditional Services are in Hebrew, following the Koren-Sacks Nusach Sefard machzor. Men and women lead different parts of the services, and we will have three seating sections: women’s, men’s, and mixed (all-gender), separated by a low curtain. 

Q: Do I need to bring my own chair?

A: Nope! We will provide chairs.

Q: Do I need to bring my own Machzor (High Holiday prayer book)?

A: You do not need to bring your own Machzor as we have them available. We use the Koren-Sacks Nusach Sefard machzor, which has Hebrew text and English translation and commentary.

Q: Why do you use Nusach Sefard?

Nusach Sefard includes elements of both Ashkenazi and Sephardi liturgy, and has traditionally been used by the Jewish synagogues in downtown Toronto.

Q: What do Family Services look like at Makom?

A: Family Services will take place in the early afternoon on each day of Rosh Hashanah and on Yom Kippur. They will involve songs, stories, and fun activities, all led by Andrea Schaffer.

On Rosh Hashanah, the Family Services will be geared to kids age 0-5 on the first day, and to kids age 6-10 on the second day. The Family Services on Yom Kippur will be for all families with kids age 10 and under.

Q: Do I need to be a member to attend High Holiday services at Makom?

A: This year, due to limited capacity at each service, we won’t be selling separate High Holiday tickets. Instead, registration will be open only to Makom members. You can see our rates and sign up for membership here. It’s a core Makom value that finances should never be an impediment to Jewish life, so if our reduced membership rate is not feasible for you, please pay what you can.

Q: Are there washrooms available?

A: Yes. The washrooms onsite are indoors, one flight of stairs down from street level. Please wear a mask when entering the building. Accessible washrooms are available at Palmerston Public Library, one block away from our courtyard, during opening hours: 12:30-8:30pm on Tuesday and Thursday, and 10am-6pm on Wednesday.

Q: Will services be accessible?

A: Services will be held on a grassy lawn at street level with barrier-free access. The washrooms on site are down a flight of 11 stairs. Fully-accessible washrooms are available at Palmerston Public Library, one block away, between 12:30-8:30pm on Tuesday and Thursday, and 10am-6pm on Wednesday.

Q: What if it rains?

A: We will have open-sided tents for shelter from the rain. Of course, on a windy day you may still get damp, so please dress for the weather!

Q: What should I wear?

A: You don’t need to dress formally (unless you’d like to).  Wear something that seems nice and/or holy to you and will be comfortable and conducive for standing, sitting, lots of singing, and bowing. Most importantly, we’ll be outdoors, so dress for the weather!

Q: Will you be requiring proof of vaccination?

A: We strongly encourage everyone who is eligible to get both doses of a Covid-19 vaccine, for the benefit of yourself and everyone around you. 

Makom welcomes children of all ages at both our family services and in our traditional services. Since kids under the age of 12 are not currently eligible for vaccination, this means that we’ll have unvaccinated people at our services. We have chosen to hold our services outdoors, with distancing required between people from different households so that we can still safely include unvaccinated people. 

Q: Are masks required?

A: You must arrive wearing a mask, and keep it on as you collect a prayer book and find a seat.

In accordance with Toronto Public Health’s updated Guidance for Places of Worship, masks are not required outdoors so long as physical distancing is maintained between members of different households. You may remove your mask when you are at your seat; please put it on whenever you leave your spot.

Masks will be required to enter the washrooms. 

Q: Will the tent walls be open for increased air circulation?

A: We will be using tents that are open on all sides. 

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