MimounaFest at SFSU

More than 100 students gathered in a conference center on the San Francisco State University campus April 29 to celebrate Mimouna, a festival traditionally observed by Moroccan and other North African Jews.

Lisa Tilton of the Nava Dance Collective does a Moroccan shikhat dance. photo/melissa loesgen

The festival is generally held on the last day of Passover, continuing until sundown the following day. Families open their homes for a celebration with family, friends and neighbors.

The seder plate on the dancer’s head (above) alludes to a Sephardic custom that signifies freedom, reminding participants that Jews once carried the burdens of slavery in Egypt upon their heads. The cups she is holding signify hospitality.

The event at San Francisco State was put on by San Francisco Hillel with the support of several donors and Jewish organizations. Students learned how the holiday celebrates community, hospitality and freedom as they indulged in a variety of Sephardic foods.

To see more than 100 additional photos, visit www.facebook.com/SFHillel.