Editor’s note: The article headline was updated on Aug. 5 to reflect that this was the first Torah to be written for Jackson Hole Jewry, not the first Torah ever in Jackson Hole.
JACKSON, Wyo. — On Thursday, Aug. 4, an expert scribe will ink the final letters of a Torah scroll at a Jewish celebration, marking the first-ever Torah to be written for Jackson Hole Jewry.
Chabad Jewish Center, located at 265 E Broadway Ave., will host the celebratory party starting at 5:30 p.m. Berel Sossover will mark the final characters of the scroll, which is a masterpiece of labor, art and skill.
Following the completion of the Torah, the scroll will be taken to the Town Square under a traditional Chuppah canopy in a joyous parade that will include political leaders, a horse-mounted police escort, live Jewish music, torches and dancing. After the procession, the community will be treated to an authentic New York-style delicatessen smorgasbord. Some of the foods on the menu will include pastrami and corned beef on pumpernickel bread, smoked meat on rye bread, liver pâté crostini and potato knish bites.
This Jewish tradition has been practiced for more than 3 millennia, with the same specifications: between 62 and 84 sheets of parchment that have been cured, tanned, scraped and prepared according to ancient Jewish heritage, and containing exactly 304,805 letters. The handwritten calligraphic scroll takes almost a full year to complete.
Three families in the community (who wish to remain anonymous) have generously sponsored this first Torah to be written for Jackson Hole Jewry. This will be an opportunity for the community to experience the richness of Jewish culture, tradition, food and music.
The Torah represents the unbroken chain of Jewish spiritual tradition, values and survival. It is also the universal foundation for human justice, monotheism, compassion and democracy. The entire community is welcome to join for this historic experience and can RSVP here or by calling 307-462-0847.