passover, jewish, seder
Lalo Seder Plate

10+ Great Ideas to Spice Up Your Seder

passover, jewish, seder
Lalo Seder Plate

The winner is in! The participants at Passover Deconstructed: Ideas for Your Seder participated in a blindfolded taste test of three traditional brands of matzo. The overwhelming favorite was…Manischewitz.  How about trying a matzah taste test at your seder?

Do you need more ideas? Here are some great ideas offered at the Jewish Together – Boulder event held at the Boulder JCC on Sunday, March 25th:

Ten creative, fresh ideas from the event that you can use for your seder:

  1. Cover all of your clocks and ask all of your guests to remove their watches. Talk about being a slave to time and see what it’s like NOT to check the time for an evening. – from Dena Gitterman, Executive Director of Nevei Kodesh
  2. For a novel seder plate illustration that you can use as an instructional place mat, go to – from Sheila Malcolm, Leader of Congregation Beth Ami
  3. Consider appetizers. After you say the prayer over karpas, consider serving a bit of food so that people can stay focused on the seder prior to serving the meal. Noam Zion suggests Kosher for Passover trail mix to help everyone enjoy their journey on the seder together. – from Noam Zion, Hartman Institute, author of “A Different Night Haggadah
  4. Find a way to engage children, but – and this is significant – to make the ritual focused on something meaningful for adults. The seder is an opportunity to invite everyone – actually, to make everyone – participate in discussion of our deepest beliefs and values. Pause during the telling of the Passover story to ask people to share something about their upbringing that defined them, something they want to preserve from that, and something they want to change. – from Rabbi Josh Rose, Har Hashem
  5. Bring your seder into the 2010’s by talking about modern day slavery worldwide. As a group, talk about actions you can take to end modern slavery. For younger guests, you can talk about the issues that make you feel enslaved and how you can take action. – From Dena Gitterman, Nevei Kodesh
  6. All questions, on all levels, are permitted. Whether it is a question about the Haggadah itself or questions about the people who are there, all questions should be seen as invitations to deeper relationship with the ideas and people that make the seder interesting. – from Rabbi Gavriel Goldfeder, Aish Kodesh
  7. To encourage questions, hand out a bit of dessert to any child (or adult) who asks a question. – from Noam Zion, Hartman Institute
  8. Consider creating your own haggadah with an organizing theme that could focus on freedom, multi-culturalism, or sustainability. Check out or use the myriad resources at the Boulder JCC library to help make your concept a reality. – from Wendy Aronson, Assistant Executive Director Boulder JCC
  9. If you are looking for variations to the shank bone for a vegetarian seder, try a beet (still simulates “blood”) or an orange. – Sheila Malcolm, Beth Ami
  10. For a variation on the traditional charoset, try Yemenite or Persian charoset that adds flavors like coriander, ginger, cayenne, and dates or apricot pistachio. You can find all sorts of recipes on the internet. – from Amy Atkins, 18 Pomegranates.

This program was offered by Jewish Together – Boulder, a new initiative that is a collaboration of Boulder synagogues and the Boulder JCC. The turnout was small yet enthusiastic.

Our next event is a Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration. Check the Boulder Jewish News for an article with more details in mid-April.

If you have any suggestions for other outreach programs or initiatives, feel free to contact Amy Atkins, Dare to Do Coordinator at 18 Pomegranates,

About Amy Atkins

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