The college student's guide to keeping Passover
College Students Guide to getting your dorm ready for Passover and observing Passover! Take the time to read through! There is lots of great information here!
1) Clean your room!
First step is to get rid of your chametz — leavened food, their derivatives, and utensils. Basically, you want to clean your space of any foods not Kosher for Passover. Breads, pastas, cereals, cakes, pretzels, beer… those are just some of the things you’ll want to dispose of.
Spiritually, the leavened bread represents the negative character traits we may have allowed to accumulate over the course of the year. Bread is made of the same ingredients as Matzah — it’s just allowed to rise, to puff itself up with arrogance. Passover is freedom time — time to free ourselves of all that spiritual clutter, and clean ourselves just as we clean our rooms.
There are three easy ways to get rid of your chametz. Eat it, give it away, or put it in a designated closed closet and include it in the chametz sale (see below).
Also make sure to (finally!) properly clean your room and car, getting rid of any crumbs or food bits and pieces. Make sure to double check:
• In any of cupboards, drawers and other storage
• In your room under and around your bed
• Toothbrush – replace it, it’s probably time anyway.
Shared kitchens in houses and halls of residence present a host of challenges to prepare them for Passover, beyond the scope of this overview. Suffice it to say that your personal dishes/utensils need to be put away for the holiday and sold with your chametz (see below). Some cooking and eating utensils used for chametz may be cleaned thoroughly and Koshered appropriately.
2) Sell that stuff!
You’ve cleaned out your room. But you have a huge bag of pasta that you really don’t want to get rid of.
Or even if you have gotten rid of everything. There are still all those pots and pans, plates and cutlery that were used with chametz all year that are off limits for Passover.
And on Passover, we’re not just not allowed to eat chametz — we’re not even supposed to possess it!
Not to worry. For thousands of years, Jews have been utilizing a simple sale procedure — the offending foods or utensils are sold to a non-Jew for the duration of Passover. When Passover is done, we simply purchase the items back, and we’re back in business.
Caution! Don’t try this at home! Seriously, though you may have a non-Jewish roomate, there’s a very specific procedure to how this is done. Leave it to a trained professional. Simply fill out the form here authorizing myself to sell it for you, and put the chametz away in a closed, designated area (a particular closet or drawer, etc.). Please don’t leave it till last minute! Fill out the form by Thursday April 14th no later then 11:59 PM. The last time one may eat chametz is on Friday, April 15th at 11:32 AM, if any chametz is remaining it should be gotten rid of or stored away (as part of the chamez sale)
3) Searching for Chametz:
A complete check for chametz should be performed on Thursday evening, April 14th, after 8:51 PM. The procedure can be found here. (Note: a mobile phone flash light can substitute for a candle, where candles are forbidden.)
If you plan to leave your dorm or house before Pesach and intend to return during the latter days of Pesach, you should clean and search for chametz before you leave
4) Got Matzah?
Make sure to load up on plenty of Matzah for the eight days, as well as other Kosher for Passover delicacies.
5) They tried to kill us. They couldn’t. Let’s eat!
Most importantly, for Passover you’ll need lots of food. Food you can’t find in the halls of residence or other catered accommodations. The good news is, it’s here for you. Not only do we offer delicious and welcoming Seders, we’ll be offering home cooked scrumptious dinner every day throughout the entire eight day holiday. If you require any meals, you can join our meal plan here.
6) Seder Nights
Some of you will be going home to join your families for the Seder nights. If for whatever reason you aren’t, we invite you to join ours.
Seder Nights this year are on Friday, April 15th and Saturday, April 16th. We’ll be holding Seder 1 at Presidential Hall and Seder 2 at Chabad. Our Seders are warm, friendly, and inspirational. (Not to mention delicious!) And all explanations and most reading are in English, making it easy for anyone to follow along. To Rsvp buy your tickets here.
The Haggadah talks of the “four sons” — the wise, the wicked, the simple, and the one who doesn’t know how to ask. But the Lubavitcher Rebbe pointed out that there is something all four of those children share; they’re all at the Seder table. Today there is a fifth child, a child who may not even know that it’s Passover, a child who hasn’t made it to the Seder at all. Our job is to ensure that the fifth child is also engaged and inspired, that the fifth child, too, can partake of our shared heritage.
So as you make your Passover plans, think about the other Jewish students you come across. Please make sure to reach out to them and invite them to our Seder.
Let’s make sure this is the year when there are no “fifth children,” when every Jew we can reach becomes an active participant in the eternal message of Passover, the holiday of liberation and redemption.
6) Chol Hamoed
Chol Hamoed are the days which are in between the first and last day of Pesach. they are from Monday, April 18th until Saturday, April 23rd On these days everything like a regular week day can be done except of course purchasing and eating chametz. We also offer Kosher for Passover dinners every night of Passover! Click here to RSVP for our meal plan.
7) Last days of Passover
You are more than welcome to join us for any or all of the meals during the last days of Pesach which start on Thursday night, April 21st through Saturday, April 23rd. Pesach culminates with the traditional Moshiach feast where we drink 4 cups of wine, eat delicious food, sing songs and hear stories and inspirational words of wisdom.
Pesach ends on Saturday, April 23rd at 9:14 PM, please wait approximately 40 minutes after the holiday ends before eating/reclaiming any sold Chametz.