As a child who attended an Orthodox Jewish day school in Patterson, NJ, I loved celebrating the Jewish holidays because they meant special foods, playing with cousins and staying home from school. As a parent, I wanted to re-create the memories I so loved for my son, but had no clue how to do that as a newly single mom. I spent the next few years working out a new way of celebrating and living Jewishly. By the time I re-married, I was able to bring those insights with me.
Some time later, I decided it would be fun to try to write about the holidays and rituals and share them with others who might be rediscovering them or even trying to observe them for the very first time. When TC Jewfolk asked me to be a guest columnist, it seemed a natural fit.
So, about me. I am a playwright whose work has been produced locally and around the country. You can find my published play, A Body of Water, through Dramatists Play Service. It was named as one of the contemporary plays that “breaks new ground” by the National Foundation of Jewish Culture and was produced at Circle Repertory Theatre in New York. My newest play, Alyeska, will be produced this spring at Blank Slate Theatre in Saint Paul. Another new play, A Great Miracle Happened Here, was part of the Fresh Ink Series at the Illusion Theater in Minneapolis.
I’m also a freelance writer with an article coming out soon in Minnesota Bride magazine, and a communications consultant who helps businesses and non-profits tell their stories. More information on my plays and other writing can be found at www.jennazark.com
Now it is your turn. Please comment on my columns and let me know what you think about Sukkot and Simchat Torah – or any other holiday you celebrate. I would love to hear from you!