The Seder: When, Where, Whom

Passover falls on the 15th of Nisan, which can be any time between late March and late April. Consult Ritualwell’s calendar on the homepage to find out when Passover falls this year. Most Jews who do not live in Israel hold two seders, on the first two nights of Passover; some only hold seder on the first night.

The Passover seder is usually held at home. While there are resorts that feature kosher for Passover packages and restaurants that will seat you for a traditional Passover meal, if you are availing yourself of these options, you probably don’t need to worry about planning a seder.

Seders can be any size from immediate family to the ganze mishpacha (whole family), neighbors, friends and pets! Think about what kind of atmosphere you are striving to create and what the right number of people will be to do that. Think about the ages of your guestschildren are an integral part of the seder but if you have children you will have to plan ways to engage them throughout. Think about the balance of knowledgeable Jews and less-knowledgeable Jews and people of other faiths and backgrounds. On the one hand, seder is an opportunity to invite friends and family who might not otherwise have a place to celebrate and to expose them to what is best in Judaism. On the other hand, if you have too many people who don’t know what is going on, you may not be able to have the level of singing or discussion for which you are striving. Lastly, think about your physical needs—most people forget this. Not only how many chairs can fit at the table and how many tables can be crammed in, but how much shopping and cooking your guests will require. You’re expecting a baby and finishing your dissertation? Maybe this isn’t the year to have 35 guests.

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