How to Build a Sukkah

Instructions for the do-it-yourselfer

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4 pieces of 2" x 2" x 7-1/2'

7 pieces of 1" x 2" x 7-1/2'

8 pieces of 1" x 1" x 8' (crosspieces)

enough cloth or plywood to cover 3 walls

cloth drape for entrance wall


binding twine

greens for roofing

You might want the challenge of not using nails, and binding with rope all joints. It can be done and a fine binding is a beautiful thing to see.


Here you can do as you please. Everything's possible, from traditional fruit hanging to ushpizin posters to printed murals to strung macaroni, gourds, origami, paper chains, etc. Some way should be found not waste too much fruit in these days of hungry nations.

People with families should perhaps divide the sukkah into areas, with one person decorating each area. Put in a carpet--that adds a lot of class. An electric light can be installed. Use a garage-style rubber-insulated socket.

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Rabbi Michael Strassfeld

Michael Strassfeld is the rabbi of the Society for the Advancement of Judaism, a Reconstructionist synagogue in Manhattan, co-author of The First Jewish Catalog, The Second Jewish Catalog, A Night of Questions: A Passover Haggadah, and author of The Jewish Holidays: A Guide and Commentary.

Sharon M. Strassfeld is co-author of the Jewish Catalog series.

Richard Siegel

Richard Siegel is the Interim Director of the School of Jewish Communal Service at HUC-JIR. He worked for 28 years at the National Foundation for Jewish Culture, the last 16 as Executive Director.