Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter

The Simchah Must Go On

Azriela Jaffe

Chassan and kallah are all decked out in their finery, the hall is clean, set up, and ready for a lively wedding — but outside, snow is swirling around, rendering travel nearly impossible. As the East Coast of the United States experiences one of its worst winters ever, what’s happening with all those weddings scheduled months ago? A peek at some simchahs that had to contend with nature as one of the mechutanim.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Psachya Septimus lost his chance for five-minutes of fame. As a busy freelance musician, he’s managed to work during just about every blizzard that has hit during the last twenty-five years. He tracks weather reports carefully, and he knows the drill: A simchah isn’t a simchah without music. He just has to be there.

To that end, Psachya has flown out of an airport days early and has stayed long after simchahs — sometimes for days on end — when there was no way to travel home. He’s a “no matter what” guy — he’ll be there, no matter what, unless it’s physically impossible for him to do so. But there was one time that it was.

In 2002, amid one of the storms of the century, there was just no way for him to leave his house in Highland Park, NJ, to make it to a simchah in Brooklyn. Travel was impossible. Ever reliable, he spent three hours on the phone finding a keyboard player from Brooklyn to substitute for him. And that was the time that the local news stations grew tired of reporting yet again about how much snow there was and what a mess it was to travel. They needed some fresh reporting, and they found it. The only people crazy enough (in the newscaster’s words) to hold a wedding in the middle of a blizzard is the Jews. He found a Jewish wedding in progress, and Psachya’s replacement was broadcast live playing at the wedding.

Meshugah, or just incredibly dedicated? In our community, there is little, if anything, that will stop a simchah from taking place as planned — come impassable roads or high snow, the show will go on. This winter has generated some of the most memorable snow simchahs, prompting us to set out to collect some of such stories.


To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription.

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.

What’s in a Name?
Shoshana Friedman “What does Writer X have to say this week?”
Atonement — Fake and Real
Yonoson Rosenblum White confessionals and faux rituals
Four Walls Coming Full Circle
Eytan Kobre All the while, there’s been a relationship in the offing...
And Yet We Smile
Yisroel Besser We are the nation that toils to be happy at all costs
Out of This World
Rabbi Henoch Plotnick Dirshu Hashem b’himatzo — we are in Hashem’s company now...
Steven and Jonathan Litton
Rachel Bachrach The co-owners of Litton Sukkah, based in Lawrence, NY
Tali Messing
Moe Mernick Tali Messing, engineering manager at Facebook Tel Aviv
Sick Note
Jacob L. Freedman “Of course, Dr. Freedman. Machul, machul, machul”
Avoiding Health Columns Can Be Good for You
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Only one reliable guide for good health: our Torah
Endnote: Side Notes
Riki Goldstein Most Jewish music industry entertainers have side profes...
Me, Myself, and Why
Faigy Peritzman Where there’s no heart and no love, there’s no point
Can’t Do It Without You
Sarah Chana Radcliffe When you step up to the plate, you build your home team
Eternal Joy
Mrs. Elana Moskowitz The joy of Succos is the fruit of spiritual victory
The Appraiser: Part III
D. Himy, M.S. CCC-SLP and Zivia Reischer Make sure your child knows his strengths
Hidden Special Needs
Rena Shechter You won’t see his special needs, but don’t deny them
Dear Wealthy Friend
Anonymous There’s no need for guilt. I am truly happy for you