Sukkah Soul was featured in Jewish Ledger

An excerpt from Jewish Ledger article “Sukkah Kits 101”

I had no desire to build a sukkah until I became a mother, at which point the desire was born with a vengeance. All of a sudden, a sukkah on Succoth was not just necessary—it was essential. Memories of the sukkot my father had erected in my childhood years returned full force and I was determined that the mitzvah of building and dining in the sukkah would become part of our family tradition.

Little did I know, it was easier said than done.

Dutifully, my husband went off to the hardware store, returning with various metal poles and sack cloth to form the walls. Four hours later our succah was looking half decent, but a few days later, after wind and rain, it was a dishevelled mess on the ground that took several more hours to clean up.

The poles were sequestered in a dusty corner of the garage and the wind-torn cloth sacks were saved for another year with better weather. But we were disillusioned with the prospect of building a succah, and even the kids' excitement as Succoth drew close couldn't bring us to try and build one again for another couple of years.

This year I decided there had to be a better way, and a mail order succah seemed just the right mixture of ease and convenience. I began my search online with Sukkah Soul (, the brainchild of Susan Shender. Shender offers a cedar sukkah with steel connectors and white, transparent polyethylene netting that covers three sides.

It's easy to fall for the pictures on her website, for the sukkah looks elegant, gracious and just the place to invite your girlfriends for a Succoth lunch or a dusk-filled dinner. The complicated part comes when you see the prices, which start at $695 (without the netting sides) and go up to $789 (shipping included). Sure, it can be used year after year, but for many of us, it's hard to justify spending that much on a sukkah.

Still, customer reviews on Shender's website are very positive. One said it took two hours to erect, another called Sukkah Soul a work of ‘a creative genius,’ and a customer in New York said it transformed her backyard space into a fairy tale.

by Lauren Kramer
Jewish Ledger
September 13, 2008