Chabad of Jupiter, Florida created a Shofar Factory in Abacoa’s Town Center for kids and families to make ram’s horns—shofars—and take them home for the upcoming Jewish New Year holidays, which begin at sundown on Sept. 16, when Jews worldwide blow a ram’s horn to evoke the start of the Jewish calendar.
At the event, students made, drilled, carved and sanded and tested their horns.
“The Shofar generates an otherworldly sound. It’s very soulful, very stirring, and open to much interpretation,” said Rabbi Berel Barash, director of Chabad Jewish Center of Jupiter and sponsor of the Shofar Factory.
“Each individual hears something else in the Shofar’s voice. Therefore it’s most fitting and quite uplifting for the Shofar to be blown during the High Holidays, the holiest Jewish season of the year.”
“The Shofar is reminiscent of the pure voice of the soul,” explained Sarah Barash, director of the Jupiter Chabad Hebrew School.
“At Rosh Hashanah, the soul strives to touch the Divine. Also the various notes sounded with the Shofar remind one of weeping, which stirs people to better their ways, which is among the central themes of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.”
Rabbi Aaron Rabin facilitated this unique workshop, captivating the attention of the children and adults alike with his humor and interesting information. He explained that the Shofar is perhaps the oldest wind instrument known to mankind. Consisting of a simple horn taken from a ram or similar animal (such as a kudu) and hollowed of its internal cartilage, the instrument produces a haunting, almost mystical tone.
Visitors learned all about the symbolism of the Shofar and the criteria an animal’s horn must meet in order to qualify as a genuine Shofar, after which they sawed, drilled, and sanded their very own horns.