Letter: Purim Nightclubs Are Not A Jewish Thing

Dear TLS,

With Purim around the corner, we cannot ignore the upcoming reality.

Fact is, I would never dream of letting my child anywhere near a nightclub, rave, or hip-hop party where music blasts out of control, people dance like they’ve lost their minds, and alcohol flows like water.

But guess what? That’s exactly what goes down here in Lakewood every Purim.

I’m sure the hosts are well meaning and have only the best intentions in mind, but apparently it’s become a thing to host crazy over the top parties, with wild music, uninhibited dancing, and of course lots of booze. Please explain to me why there’s a burgeoning trend to throw these ludicrously extravagant nightclub-style parties that do not at all resemble what Judaism or the holiday of Purim represents.

Parents seriously need to wake up and warn their children against participating in these events. A bit of fun is one thing, but the utterly excessive and wildly irresponsible lifestyle glorified by these gatherings is absolutely not what we should be idolizing or presenting as a model to impressionable youths.

Stick to the local party at your shul, hang out with your family, stuff your face with as many hamantashen as you can handle. And if your teenager wants to try a shot of whiskey and you’re there to supervise, that’s fine as well.

But, for goodness’ sake, don’t be complicit in allowing your young, impressionable teenager to be sucked into these makeshift “nightclubs” that disgracefully rear their heads on Purim night. We owe our kids much more than that.

Thank you,

B. Glatt

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51 COMMENTS

    • I disagree. There may be merit to what is being said, but (although I’ve never been to a night club) I believe there isn’t any comparison to the lude parties that take place in a night club and therefore the comparison isn’t respectful.

  1. Happy Purim here’s a great idea try not drinking alcohol in public or around your kids you need to be sober around your kids

    • Dear writer you definitely have a Valid point but to make a blatant statement about our community a City of more Tzedakah, Torah and Chesed than other other community in World outside Eretz Yisroel is Shameful and Disrespectful and a tremendous DISGRACE to our entire Kehilla!!! On a side note you are completely WRONG . J don’t know where you have spent the last 30 Purims but for 20 years iv been traveling across America collecting in different cities Purim and i can attest there might be a few parties in the entire extended community that are out of our boundaries but the overall majority of our Kehilla’s parties are nothing like a party club or the alike!!!

      P.S. i go to over 100 parties in our Kehilla every Purim!

      On another note im little disappointed with you as the Website that represents our kehilla that you would put out a fictional bashing Article and especially the language. המבין יבין
      A Freilichen Purim to everyone and lets not forget that this day is a tremendous time of TEFFILA and there are many Segules for the learning and davening on this day and especially in such times we need every bit of it!!

  2. What exactly is the problem? Assuming its only men and jewish music. Its one night a year and its purim. Take it easy
    We have much bigger issues to be worried about as a klal.

  3. All good points being made. But honestly We all know nothing’s going to change. The rich people are going to keep making these over the top parties and the poor people are going to feel like they have to catch up and try to match it and the boys will just be getting drunk and vomiting all over the place. I don’t think there’s anybody who has the power or guts to put down their foot and declare that this should not be done in our community. I would love to be wrong on this, but I don’t think that’s going to be the case here.

  4. Hi, almost all parties around town do not reflect what you’re expressing in your letter. The few that actually are nightclub style happened to belong to very specific organizations which are fully supervised by the staff of said organizations. They’re not glorifying or promoting it they’re just catering to their very specific crowd.

    I do agree children should have more supervision but they can also be taught that some places while good for some but may not be for your bocherel.

  5. Regular annual kefira. You think you know better than chazal. This has been going on on Purim forever and we’ve raised a tzibbur of bnei Torah.

    • Azoi?? Get your head out of the sand sir.

      These kids grow up to be the tzibur of bnei Torah who are alcoholics…the ones who come home from shabbos kiddush in shul totally wasted…the example they set for their children, let alone the poor wife having to deal with it every week…

      You know the deal.

      Still think its OK?

      Stick your head back into the sand for one more year.

    • Because there’s nothing wrong with it. Have you considered that maybe you have no clue what Purim is all about? You should consider that maybe just maybe your missing something

  6. Here we go again, what I decide is appropriate is appropriate & whatever I deem to be too much is excessive & irresponsible.
    Baruch Hashem I hired a detective to find out what kind of party my neighbor Yosselle is throwing.
    He’s having 4 bars so I’m limiting my party to 3 bars.
    He’s having 3 dance floors so I’m limiting my party to 2 dance floors.
    He’s having 6 different kinds of steak so I’m limiting my party to 5 different steaks.
    He’s having 4 DJ’s so I’m limiting my party to 3 DJ’s.
    I hope people show up to my party. Actually, I hope people first attend Yosselle’s party so when they see my party they’ll understand what a kovadik simcha looks like & that Yosselle is a bum for being excessive & irresponsible.

    • If you would have been around by Achevroash’s party would you have said the same thing? I mean its not be “who gets to decide”. Its about common sense. We call it the 5th shluchin aruch. No it isn’t black and white. No there is no clear line. But sometimes its obvious. When you know you know.

  7. the one and only issue has actually been around since Mordechai HaTzaddik and that is those tameh shiktzes as long as the party is betaharas yisroel it makes no difference what type of music, lighting, special effects costumes you have as long as we are avoiding what Haman tried to accomplish at that seudas Achashveirosh back then and we listen to Mordechai to keep to ourselves and our own then that is true simchas Purim no matter whatever else comes along with it!

  8. Anyone that says that this is the way it always was, is lying.
    I was a bachur in the 90’s and I don’t recall ONE such over the top party. NOT ONE.
    Let’s not rewrite history. (It’s like the people who like to claim that the Litvishe world actually come from Lita, bologna 75% come from heimishe/hungarian families, with 25% remainder from ehrliche yekishe/oberlander families.)

  9. These parties are a tremendous chillul Hashem which even Yom Kippur is not mechaper. Purim is a time for spiritual growth, the only thing these parties are doing to our youth (and adults) is bringing them further away from anything spiritual. If a rich baal habas wants to show off his wealth that’s his business but parents please don’t let your kids run wild, believe it or not you are responsible for you’re kids well being and are allowed to say no.

  10. The actual mitzva of drinking on Purim is 1. to drink wine, not liquor
    2. to drink during the seuda, not at a booze party
    3. not to get rip roaring drunk, but, Ad delo yoda, whic means until you fall asleep.

  11. If we were alive in Shushan when Achasveirosh made his party would we have ignored Mordechai & said “live & let live”?

    Probably.

  12. I sat that Rabbis and the general public should demonstrate their opposition to these wild parties by not accepting money donations from the hosts for any causes at all.

    That’ll teach em !

  13. I’ll leave others to comment on these over the top parties – as they have done so already and with such great passion.. But while we are on the subject of Purim and boys drinking I’d like to bring up something that should be addressed.. last year I was learning in Bais Sholom – by the way it’s a great place to be Purim night, a nice oilam sitting and learning- and sadly the amount of boys that kept pouring in from Bais Aharon where the huge Mesibas Purim is being held and almost in all cases they come in drunk and out of control and in some instances screaming and yelling and trying to be cute and others lying on the floor drunk, making Bais Sholom the ‘go to’ place when you want to get away from the hoola hutzge action next door. At one point I had to call Hatzolah for a kid who was lying on the floor in the bais medrash totally out and unnoticed. He not in good shape as they took him to hospital. Hard to believe this is happening in a bais medrash where an oilam are sitting and learning in the late hours of the night, yet getting constantly disturbed by some out of control idiots.. There is absolutely no excuse for this kind of behavior. “Come on! its Purim, chill” is not going to fly.. and I’m sorry, these are young 13-15 year olds that should not be out at such a late hour especially without their parents having any idea what their kid is up to… as an aside, the dispatcher who took my call is a relative of mine and he later told me that my call was the 23rd that night for someone needing medical attention due to over drinking. This really needs to stop.

  14. Quite a few of Normal, Bright, intellectual Bachurim wind up Alcoholics as a result of these parties; and who knows, some may have drugs as well.
    R’ Glatt is 100% correct. Also:
    Many wealthy people in the area enjoy hosting parties with loud music and good food, go there not to ask money from them , go there to enjoy it.

  15. Seems from all these op eds there is some lack of control and massive competition as keeping up with the joneses in lakewood and surrounding areas.some old messages every day! My son skipped the purim parties first year of festival because he doesn’t drink,doesn’t smoke etc (learns from home how to be bh).he was convinced from friends to go last year…dressed up..but called an hour later to come home! Everyone drunk and he had enough. This is a parental problem! Everyone wants to fit in,be in the in crowd and children pick up on it . Our family is respected, well liked, part of the community and happy!! Guess what? Even without trying to fill an endless hole and being like everyone else 🙃 just enjoy ur purim! 🥳 🎉 spend time with family and stop looking at everyone with judgement or envy.

  16. I guess this as good of a place as any to thank all the well to do people in town for all the good and tzdaka that they give every year on Purim and the rest of the year. No doubt you all have a very big hand in the amazing growth of Torah in Lakewood and beyond.
    That being said, although not intentional, I would also like to thank the upper class for raising מושגים so high that some of my children are obsessed with nice clothes, cars, homes etc to the point that their אהבת התורה has been totally destroyed.
    Their aspirations have been switched from גדלות בתורה to גדלות in גשמיות. I am not blaming any of you חלילה, but please understand that indirectly my children and thousands of others have been permanently destroyed by the opulence which is shown on Purim with these parties and all year round with the flashy lifestyle.
    May Hashem bentch you to use money for only good to help build Torah and not חלילה the opposite.
    Freilichen Purim.

  17. It all stems from one thing. Overabundance of luxury and showing off. Its corrupting our children. But wait I forgot the party maker gives alot to tzedaka so its OK.

  18. I’m not a big party goer but let the youngsters have some fun. Nobody gets arrested, there are no brawls and no crime. Some kids get drunk? Well guess what that’s what happens on Purim. It’s 1 day a year let me enjoy themselves

  19. Life is not about having fun! These parties are NOT in the spirit of a Yom tov. Don’t try and kashur them. As yidden we always want to go places and do things where the shechina would be comfortable coming to. Guaranteed these places are not! Nothing to do with being a party pooper. A normal Purim seudah and Purim mesiba is fine. A Purim party that resembles what the mishte of achashverosh did isn’t what Hashem wants. We are in a time of great tzara as the yidden were in the time of Mordechai and Esther. We should focus on doing the right thing and improving our ruchniyus and relationship with Hashem and plead with our father in heaven to end this long and challenging galus. May we be zoche to see the nissim today as they did back then in Shushan Habira.

  20. tottaly not true i have been to many of these party
    there is jewish music & freilich dancing lkovad purim
    there is no night club like party
    it is ok for your children to have some fun for a day

  21. During the month of September in 1970, a number of planes got hijacked. Rabbi Hutner (may his memory be blessed) and part of his family were on one of those planes. On Sep. 26, 1970 Rabbi Hutner got released and they flew his family to Cyprus.
    He arrived in NY on Erev Rosh HaShana.
    His students asked Reb Moshe Feinstien
    זכר צדיק לברכה
    if it is ok to have a band to play music upon his arrival.
    Reb Moshe replied not to have music because there were still other Yidden in Jordan in captivity still.
    We also have our hostages in Gaza right now.

    • I remember many years ago in the 1990s there was R’L a terrorist bombing in Israel on Purim, and a number of yeshiva’s canceled the mesiba that year to show that we can’t celebrate while our brothers are in pain. Wondering if it’s something worth considering doing again.

  22. After Covid, at KNA we had about 1300 people on Purim night whereas we expected about 2000. I was told that there were fancy and expensive parties that had started since then with well known singers, colored lights, and alcohol. I thought about escalating our party to try to compete. Instead, I reduced our music from a seven piece band to a one-man-band but increased the tzedakah from $50 to $100 per person. Also, we don’t serve alcohol. The crowds have returned.

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