This will be my first year celebrating the upcoming holidays. I will be observing Rosh Hashanah at my reform shul and Yom Kippur at a non-affiliated congregation in Maui (vacation planned by my spouse without asking me about dates).
My question is, what is appropriate attire for each holiday? I have read that all white is appropriate for both, but what are your thoughts and experiences?
Post by Debbie B. on Sept 17, 2011 22:09:19 GMT -5
I was in Maui this past July and I was told and then noticed that people dress very casually there. Even at restaurants where you'll typically spend over $100 per person, people may be dressed rather casually---the men might wear short sleeve shirts and no ties or jackets, the women might wear nice "flip flop" sandals rather than more formal high heels. So I'm guessing that shul dress will tend to be more casual too. Before my trip, I checked the location of the shul, but it wasn't convenient to get to on the Shabat that we were there (We stayed near Lahaina). But I have friends who stayed within walking distance of it and attended services when they vacationed in Maui some years ago.
I suspect the "white" clothing for the Yamim Noraim, especially Rosh Hashanah comes in part from an emulation of the white of a kittel that many observant men where for the holidays. White is also symbolic for "purity".
In my minyanim, some, but not most, women (and men who don't were a kittel) will wear white, for Rosh Hashanah and/or Yom Kippur. On a typical Shabbat, dress in my minyanim is usually fairly casual. It is not unusual in the summer to see short-sleeved shirts, shorts or jeans, and sandals for men, and casual (below knee) skirts with a nice short sleeve T-shirt for women, although some of the older men always wear suits and some of the women dress more formally. But members do dress more nicely for the High Holidays, although incongruously along with sneakers and other less formal footwear to avoid wearing leather.
Another tradition is to wear new clothes for Rosh Hashanah. But other people aren't going to know whether your clothes are new. Even in my small minyanim where most members attend services very regularly and we all know each other well, I wouldn't be surprised if someone noticed if I wore new clothes, but I certainly wouldn't expect it.
By the way, if you like sushi, here's some info from my sister got about discount sushi at a restaurant called Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar:
Every day, orders placed by 6pm (5:30 opening) will receive a 25% discount. This applies to all but a handful of our menu items. Reservations, if available, are taken on Tues thru Saturday for the early bird. Sunday and Monday are seated first come first serve until 6:45 when reservations, if available are taken.
But we found that the reservations booked up a couple weeks in advance. My sister had gone there on a previous trip, but we didn't end up going there because we couldn't get reservations for the days that the early dinner worked for our schedules.
Also, if you would be interested in a snorkeling boat trip, I highly recommend the Pacific Whale Foundation trips which was another recommendation by my sister. My sister took her family (8 and 10 yr old daughters) on one trip, and my husband and I went on a different trip (because the one they were on was filled, so we went on more adventurous trip that didn't take younger kids). The dive guide was very knowledgable and the trip was well run.
Have a great time. Maui is beautiful---truly paradise.
Thanks to both of you for the good info. It's hard to find white clothing after labor day (and Serial Mom doesn't approve) but I can figure out something. I like the idea of wearing white.
We're staying just north of Kaanapali, so the Shul is out of the way, but since it is Yom Kippur, I want to attend.
I really like the Pacific Whale Foundation - I have taken their whale and dolphin watching trips in the past and also snorkeled with them. It's a great organization. This is our 5th time to Maui, and we are taking friends who have never been there, so it should be a fun time.
Have you tried the Old Lahaina luau? I have heard it's really good, so I think we will check it out.
Post by Debbie B. on Sept 20, 2011 13:23:54 GMT -5
Yes, I went to the Old Lahaina Luau. I was in Maui for my parents 50th wedding anniversary along with my sisters and their families (but not my kids who were at summer resident camps---my sister's kids are younger). My mom used to job-share a travel agent job with her close friend who grew up in Hawaii and the travel agency was owned by a couple in which the wife was not only native Hawaiian, but of royal Hawaiian ancestry. So the agency booked a lot of Hawaii trips. My mom has been to Maui many times.
My parents took us all to the Old Lahaina Luau which my mom chose because she thinks it is the most authentic of the luaus. I watched the un-earthing of the the whole pig that had been cooked while buried for hours (much like a New England clam bake), but couldn't eat the meat of course. But between the poke (raw fish salad) and many vegetarian options, there was plenty for me to eat, given that I'm OK with non-kosher cookware and plates outside of my home. A friend of one sister is Vegan and had still found plenty to eat at that luau. The before-dinner educational stations were interesting and the Polynesian dancing was great. The servers were friendly and attentive and kept us well-supplied with drinks (which are included in the cost of the meal)---kind of too bad my husband and I aren't into hard liquor and my mom couldn't drink the mixed drinks because she is allergic to most fruit, but especially many tropical ones. I would definitely recommend the Old Lahaina Luau.
I have made purchases through both of the above companies and can recommend them. I have the fold-over below the knee skirt in two different colors, and my daughter has two of the skirts as well (one of hers is white especially to wear for the holidays). It is very comfortable and can also be worn as a strapless dress (with a shirt or shrug to cover the shoulders for more modesty, if you prefer).
I have worn my Teva sandals for Yom Kippur and I'm guessing that on Hawaii many of the Jews will wear flip-flops and other non-leather sandals for YK.
By the way, be sure to check with the shul in advance about ticketing/guest policies as well as service times before you go.
Last Edit: Sept 20, 2011 13:26:53 GMT -5 by Debbie B.
Post by brnechama on Sept 27, 2011 14:28:41 GMT -5
For Rosh Hashana, I like to wear gold along with fall colors. But this is purely personal/seasonal. It is nice to have new clothes...or something new, for all of the (festive) Jewish holidays. But I won't be able to do that this year!
For Yom Kippur the custom is to wear white. Members of more traditional congregations will not wear leather shoes. I myself have a white pair of comfy (but ugly) Crocs that I wear on yom kippur. You can also wear tennis shoes, those little Chinese slippers or mules. Flip-flops would be too casual. It is also customary to NOT wear jewelry or wear perfume.
Post by Debbie B. on Sept 27, 2011 14:43:55 GMT -5
I wouldn't suggest flip-flops for places other than Hawaii. But if Hawaiians wear "nicer" flip-flop style sandals to expensive restaurants (admittedly not the $2 rubber ones), then I'm guessing that they might wear the rubber ones for YK. This is based on the fact that in the Chicago area, I have seen people wearing bedroom slippers (like pink fuzzy scuffs!) while walking to shul on Yom Kippur. I picked up a pair of super cheap cloth slip-ons (similar to the Chinese cloth shoes) with the idea of having them for YK, but although you're not supposed to be comfortable (I've seen some ultra-frum Jews saying that Crocs are "too comfortable" to be kosher for Yom Kippur!), I found the lack of padding under foot more uncomfortable than I was willing to put up with for all the standing in YK services.
Last Edit: Sept 27, 2011 14:44:44 GMT -5 by Debbie B.