Halachos of Eating in the Sukkah

See the following two documents (PDF) for a review of Halachos of eating in the Sukkah. Any specific questions, particularly involving extenuating circumstances, may be addressed to Rabbi Rosenbaum or Rabbi Silver.

The Obligation of Eating in the Sukkah the First Two Nights

Eating in the Sukkah

Many individuals have expressed concern regarding leaving their Sukkos up over the coming days with predictions of possibly strong winds.

We normally would not take our Sukkos down on Chol Hamoed. Firstly, there are general restrictions regarding Melacha done on Chol Hamoed not for the purposes of Chol Hamoed or Yom Tov. Secondly, taking down the Sukkah precludes us from using it for the rest of Chol Hamoed and, to whatever extent we have the Minhag, Shemini Atzeres.

Nevertheless, the potential damage to Sukkos and homes, not to mention the possibility of danger to people, would be sufficient grounds to take down Sukkos on Chol Hamoed. Having said that, I have had discussions with an expert in the field and have been told that the winds should not reach a concerning level, if they do at all, before Sunday night. Furthermore, if things develop in a more promising manner there might even be an opportunity to eat in the Sukkah on Monday without any dangerous situations on Sunday.

My current advice is to leave our Sukkos up for now and reassess the situation Saturday night. If the situation is concerning at that juncture it would be appropriate to take down the Sukkos. I plan to send another communication Saturday night.

May we all continue to celebrate a lovely holiday and may Hashem protect us and all of our neighbors, near and far. This very protection is what we celebrate on the holiday of Sukkos.

Rabbi Dovid Rosenbaum