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 garden picnic.

Family picnic


Children sitting on picnic blanket

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.


Boy reading on picnic blanket

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

Picnic at Camp Shalom

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.


My First Shabbat Board Book by Clare Lister

My First Shabbat Book

The preparations for and celebrations of Shabbat are introduced, showing some of the basic concepts of the Jewish day of rest.


Kayla and Kugel by Ann D. Koffsky

Kayla and Kugel

Kugel the dog loves Shabbat, and loves helping Kayla get the house ready! At least, he thinks he’s helping... but Kayla might say otherwise! In the end, everyone learns the importance of shalom bayit - peace in the home.



Picnic food

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