A Shabbat Picnic

Summer is the perfect time to enjoy a Shabbat picnic under a darkening Friday sky. So, light (or improvise) the candles, bless the children, and sing “Shalom Aleichem” with a backyard picnic.


In the days leading up to your family’s Shabbat picnic, prepare for the event by collaborating on a decorative picnic blanket craft. Take a simple, plain white sheet and use fabric markers to decorate a fun, unique cloth to sit upon.

Save (and wash) the picnic blanket for future use. It could even become a family tradition, with new drawings and added art applied each year.


It wouldn’t be a PJ Library Shabbat picnic without a few choice Jewish children’s books. Here are three appropriate selections, ideal for such an occasion:

Picnic at Camp Shalom by Jacqueline Jules

When Carly laughs at Sara’s last name, her bunkmate at Camp Shalom refuses to be consoled. Little does Sara know that Carly has a reason for her outburst. When their mutual love of music brings harmony to Shabbat dinner as well as to their friendship, Carly finally gets the chance to reveal her secret.

The Schmutzy Family by Madelyn Rosenberg

The Schmutzys are messy all week long, and no one (not even Mom!) seems to care a bit. When Friday rolls around, everyone helps clean up as the family prepares for Shabbat.

The Shabbat Puppy by Leslie Kimmelman

Every Saturday Noah and his grandfather go for a walk together, looking for “Shabbat Shalom” (Sabbath Peace). For what seems like the longest time to the little boy, Grandpa won’t allow Mazel, Noah’s puppy, to join them. Eventually, though, the dog is permitted to join in, with sweet results.


Now for the tasty part! Pack up delicious treats for a fulfilling (and filling!) outdoor picnic. Keep it simple and nosh on a few wholesome snack foods or prepare ahead of time, perhaps even baking challah together as a family. Find a full list of kid-approved recipes here.

Shabbat Shalom!

« Find more activities, book lists, and recipes