Jewish weddings

Destination Weddings, With A Jewish Twist

Picturesque outdoor chupahs, from Cyrus to Spain to the Yucatan.

Travel Writer

Jews have a certain advantage when it comes to wedding geography: all you need is a chupah and a rabbi.

“In ancient times, the wedding was outdoors,” notes Rabbi Barbara Aiello, an Italian-American rabbi who leads a congregation in Calabria, Italy and officiates at weddings throughout Southern Europe.

A wedding on the beach at the supposed birthplace of Aphrodite, in Cyprus. Photo courtesy of Alexandra Zimakova

A Twist On Tradition

Old becomes new as couples personalize wedding ceremonies.


Washington — In the months before his wedding, Jon Cetel cringed at the notion of having his friends dance him to his bride at a traditional bedeken ceremony, where he would place the veil over her face.

The concept “was completely foreign to me,” he said. It “felt too traditional.”

But his bride, Ashley Novack, 26, was entranced by the tradition. “I love dancing, and this sounded like an amazing opportunity definitely not to be missed,” she said.

Mike Peretz reads a personal statement to his bride, Sara Cohen. JTA

One-Stop Shopping For The Chupah-Bound

From wedding gowns to wigs, Jewish bridal fair for Orthodox draws more than 400 to Brooklyn banquet hall.

Special To The Jewish Week

After a warm-up joke about mothers-in-law, Rabbi Yehoshua Werde, in beard and black hat, extolled the institution of marriage.

“It’s the centerpiece of Jewish life. Marriage and married life are on a pedestal in our tradition,” he said from the stage of Grand Prospect Hall in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn. “There’s no greater act than the act of marriage.”

The scene at My Big Fat Jewish Wedding Expo at Grand Prospect Hall in Brooklyn.  photos by: Yossi Percia

My Big, Fat, Mixed-Union Wedding

She’s Ashkenazi, he’s Sephardi: what’s a couple to do?

Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — When Debbie Miller and her then-boyfriend, Ofer Valkurlker, decided to marry, they knew their wedding would be a fusion of east and west. Miller is American-born and Ashkenazi while Valkurlker, who is a member of the B’nei Menashe community, was born in India.

A well-planned cross-cultural wedding sheds a positive spotlight on both cultures. Michele Chabin

A Call For A Moratorium On Shabbat Weddings

Special To The Jewish Week

The recent wedding of Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky has triggered a spate of articles about interfaith marriage, rabbinic officiation, co-officiation with Christian clergy and the like. Considerably less attention has been focused on the fact that the wedding took place on a Saturday before nightfall. Perhaps this was deemed less newsworthy because it has become so commonplace. I’m asking myself whether the most publicized Shabbat wedding in American Jewish history might have the unintended consequence of questioning anew the propriety of performing weddings on the Sabbath.

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