NEW YORK (Sep. 28)
More than 5000 Lubavitcher Hasidim gathered in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn last night and sang and danced until early this morning to celebrate Succoth. Several blocks of Kingston Avenue, the main business street of Crown Heights, were closed off by the police as were intersecting streets.
“It was reminiscent of the joy of the Holy Temple in the days of Succos,” Rabbi Shmuel Butman, director of the Lubavitch Youth Organization, said. He noted that the Talmud says, “Whoever did not see the joy of Succos did not see joy in his life.”
The Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Schneerson, said that “we have to parallel that joy.” In several unprecedented addresses following services at the Lubavitch World Headquarters since the start of Succoth, the Rebbe noted that this year bears particular importance since it is the year of the Hakhel, the year when all men, women and children gathered in Jerusalem for Succos.
The celebration last night was accompanied by a Hasidic orchestra. “It was a natural flow of joy that could not have been contained in the boundaries of a shul however large,” Butman said. He said the crowds consisted of guests who had come here for the entire month of Tishrei as well as Crown Heights residents.