Sukkot In-Gathering
Celebrating The Rain Ritual

October 20, 2019

More Details Coming in August



On the seventh day and culmination of the festival of Sukkot, join Wilderness Torah as we celebrate Hoshana Raba (the Great Pleading). Hoshanot are pleading liturgical poems we recite during Sukkot to call on Spirit to send rain during the winter months. Jewish communities all over the world, recite these prayers and perform hakafot (circles), waving willow branches toward the earth to invoke the waters.

Join us as we rejoice as a community and give gratitude to the earth and Spirit for a blessed year and the coming rains.

Save the Date: Sunday, October 20, 2019
Time: TBD
Location: Tilden Park, Berkeley, CA (exact site shared upon registration)

What To Expect

Our Sukkot In-Gathering celebration will be a daylong event filled with fun for the whole family! Before we begin our Hoshana Raba Rain Ritual we’ll have the morning and afternoon to ready ourselves. There will be many activities to prepare our minds, bodies, and souls.

Make your own lulav, learn the music for the ritual, create rain dance regalia, or dive into a Sukkot text study—there’s something for everyone. Kids join in their own village fun and will craft, play, and much, much more!

Hoshana Raba Daylong Celebration and Rain Prayer Ritual:

  • Fun Sukkot crafting and learning
  • Pray for rain & celebrate the harvest
  • Gather together in community!


Registration Will Open in August

Registration Fees

Below reflects registration pricing for 2018.  2019 pricing is subject to change.  Updated pricing will be provided upon registration opening in August.

  • Sliding scale $36-$54 for adults (with 50% discounts available for those in need)
  • $25 for teens ages 11-17
  • $15 for youth ages 4–10
  • $10 for tots ages 0–3
  • HELP SOMEONE ATTEND: Choose a $94 Adult ticket, which includes a $40 tax-deductible donation.

Your registration is not complete until you have paid, ensuring you a spot at the event. Unpaid registrations will be canceled after 48 hours.

Avodah (work exchange) Program

Please read below for information about our Avodah Program and fill out an application.

We are now accepting Avodah applications on a rolling basis until all positions are filled. Avodah fills quickly. Read the position descriptions below and apply early for greatest choice of positions.

Avodah is intended for those who want to serve and have financial need. If you have financial need and are unable to do Avodah, (due to physical limitation or childcare, etc.) please contact us for special arrangements.

IMPORTANT: Each Avodah role is integral to the health of the whole system. The hours you contribute with Avodah serve as payment for the event. If you are absent or late for your shifts, or you do not arrive by the agreed-upon time, your absence affects many others. Therefore, if you do not fulfill your agreed hours, we will ask you to pay the difference after the festival at the rate of $20 per hour.

CANCELLATION: If you register for your Avodah position and then cancel after (one week before event preparations begin), you will be required to pay the lowest adult registration fee and will not be allowed to participate in Avodah at future events. Exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis for emergency situations.

Avodah is an opportunity for folks to help create the village, and is a great way to save money, meet new friends, and play an important role of service at the festival.
Each Avodah role is integral to the health of the whole system. Please read through our Avodah Terms & Conditions before applying for Avodah.

Avodah Applications will open in August

Check out Last Year’s Schedule Below

2019 Schedule Coming SOON!

10:00–10:30 am Arrival & Welcome
10:30–11:15 am Opening Circle
11:30–1:00 pm Morning Activities and Crafts
Special Programming for Tots, Children & Teens (up to age 13)
1:00–2:00 pm Picnic Lunch (bring your own)
Optional Sharing Circle Discussions
2:15–3:45 pm Afternoon Activities and Crafts
Special Programming for Tots, Children & Teens (ages 0–13)
4:00–5:30 pm Hoshana Raba Rain Ritual

Our Sukkot In-Gathering will be a fun-filled day for the whole family! In the morning and early afternoon there will be many activities from crafting to music, all of which will help us prepare for the rain ritual later in the day.

Below is a list of the great activities that will be offered!

Create a Water Vessel Bowl from a Dried Gourd with Suzannah Sosman
Come learn the craft of turning gourds into water carriers. This ancient water carrying technique is easy and beginner friendly

Moroccan Lantern Making with JIMENA
Moroccan Jews are believed to have laid the foundation of arts and crafts in Morocco and to have dominated refined, artistic jewelry and metalwork. Design your own Moroccan lantern and get an inside look at the magnificent Jewish community in Morocco.

Native Lulav Making with Jonathan Furst
Use native materials (provided) to create your own lulav and get ready to shake, shake, shake ‘til the rain comes down. Crafting time 10–15 minutes: come for the lulav, stay for the rain dance.

Make a Netted Water Bottle Holder with Sarai Shapiro
Water! Let’s honor the water we carry with us by making a beautiful handwoven netted holder out of jute – (make it for any size water bottle – bring your water bottle to class for sizing).

The Qualities of Water with Julie Emden of Embodied Jewish Learning
Explore different aspects of water – soft rain, flowing stream, rushing river, raging ocean and more! – in this creative, experiential embodied practice for Sukkot. Join for some gentle movement/yoga/dance, drawing, and poetry writing about the qualities of water as we call forth the rains for the coming winter months.

Everyone gathers together to eat a picnic lunch (bring your own lunch).

You are invited to eat lunch with friends or join an optional sharing circle. These circles are informal discussion groups around a specific topic and are a great way to meet people with similar interests. Among the many interesting circles will be a circle for participants new to Wilderness Torah.

We will gather as a community to celebrate and pray for rain. We will dance with our willow branches. We will perform nissuch ha-mayim, a pouring of the water on our altar to invoke the waters in remembrance of the Temple rain ritual that happened each year on Sukkot.


We will be holding the daylong festival in Tilden Park, Berkeley, California. We will spend all of our time outside and on the land. Be prepared to dress in layers so that you can adjust easily to changing temperatures. Bring a hat if it is sunny.

Our Sukkot In-Gathering festival will be held in Tilden Park, Berkeley. You will receive detailed driving directions in a confirmation email when you register for the festival, as well as a link to carpool signup.

Accessibility: Parking lot is adjacent to the site, and there is an accessible path.

  • We will meet rain or shine. Our ritual will take place in a sunny grove where it could be hot.
  • Please bring a bag lunch and any utensils you’ll need.
  • We will be seated on the ground for some activities, so consider bringing a blanket to sit on or an easy-to-carry chair if sitting on the ground is uncomfortable for you.
There is plenty of fresh, potable water. Please bring a water bottle so you can stay hydrated.

We do not provide communal garbage, recycling, or compost bins. Please take out what you bring in!

More questions? Check out our FAQs