Published on February 21, 2020

From History to Costumes, Everything you Need to Know About Purim

Fun.com Everything You Need to Know About Purim

Each Purim, it's hard to decide which is more exciting...the costumes or the delicious food that comes with the holiday. If you're new to the celebration and have no idea what we're even talking about, don't worry, we're here to help you sort things out! From how to celebrate, to what to wear, even what to drink and eat, we want you to feel like a master of Purim. If you're already familiar with the holiday and are looking for cool, unique costumes this year, feel free to scroll down to the costumes section. Otherwise, let's get things going!

Guide to Purim

What is Purim?

According to Merriam-Webster, Purim is defined as "a Jewish holiday celebrated on the 14th of Adar in commemoration of the deliverance of the Jews from the massacre plotted by Haman".

When is Purim Celebrated?

Purim 2020

March 9-10

Purim 2021

February 25-26

Purim 2022

March 16-17

Purim 2023

March 6-7

Purim 2024

March 23-24

Purim 2025

March 13-14

Purim is celebrated on the 14th day of the Hebrew month of Adar.

How to Celebrate Purim

How to Celebrate Purim

People celebrate Purim in a multitude of ways. It mostly comes down to what you're most comfortable with. Some communities may gather at their local synagogue for a night of stories, costumes, and dance. Others might opt-in for the more intimate setting at home and invite friends and family over for a house party. There's no wrong way to celebrate Purim and it's completely up to the individual. To find your nearest Purim celebration, hit up the internet to see if there's a synagogue event near you.

Purim Traditions

Purim Traditions

[Source: Spirited Table]

Purim is a holiday filled with many traditions. From reading the story of Purim at a synagogue to dressing up in costumes, to delivering mishloach manot, we are going to break down each tradition so you can learn more about which traditions make up the great holiday that is Purim!

Book of Esther Summary

It is common practice for the Book of Esther to be read during Purim. Whenever Haman's name is said, the tradition is to drown out his name using noisemakers called flaggers, while shouting and making other loud noises. If you aren't familiar with the story and don't have time to read the entire thing, you've come to the right place. Follow on for a Book of Esther summary. 

The story of Purim follows a Jewish woman named Esther, who was chosen to be the wife of Ahasuerus, the King of Persia. Haman, the King's chief minister had a dangerous hatred toward Jewish people. So much so that he developed an elaborate plan to wipe out every Jew in the kingdom. Esther's cousin, Mordechai, informs her of his sinister plan and urges her to use her power to stop the attack. Esther reveals her Jewish identity to her husband, the king, who orders Haman to be hanged, saving the Jews from annihilation.

Costumes

Boys' Purim Costumes

Purim Boys Costumes Fun.com

Mordechai Costume Spider-Man CostumeStar Wars Kylo Ren CostumePokemon Pikachu Costume 
Super Mario Kart CostumePaw Patrol Chase CostumeOld Town Road CostumeFortnite Rainbow Smash Pickaxe Replica

Is your son going to be a star in the play at your synagogue? If he doesn't have one already, this costume is perfect for your child to portray Mordechai, the King of Persia. When the play's over, you can have him swap out his royal look for something a little bit on the pop-culture side of things. Whether he's a gamer, a Star Wars fan, or loves 'Old Town Road' (let's be honest, who doesn't?), we have plenty of choices for him to be whoever he wants to be.

Girls' Purim Costumes

Purim Costumes for Girls Fun.com

Esther CostumeScary Reaper CostumeMagical Unicorn CostumeDisney Descendants 3 Mal Costume
Cotton Candy Clown CostumePeppa Pig CostumeBaby Shark Mommy Shark CostumeDawn of Justice Wonder Woman Costume

Kicking off our girls' costumes is the iconic Esther from the story of Purim. If you're looking for tznius dresses to use for your Purim costume, this is a great option. Continuing the trend of iconic female characters, we also have Wonder Woman, Peppa Pig, Mommy Shark, and Mal from Descendants 3. Animals are another great choice of costumes! And while unicorns aren't necessarily real (or are they?), they're one of the most popular costumes of 2020.

Men's Purim Costumes

Men's Purim Costume Ideas

Mordechai CostumeIT Pennywise CostumeIron Man CostumeMarty McFly Costume
Aladdin CostumeSpooky Ghost CostumeBatman CostumeGrease Costume

What's scarier than dressing as Haman from the story of Purim? While we don't think there is a villain as comparable, Pennywise from It is a pretty strong contender. The giggling, murderous clown was a huge cinema success when its theatrical remakes were released. Another hit was Avengers: Endgame. Dress up as the man who keeps everyone together, Tony Stark, with our deluxe Iron Man costume. If you're more of a DC fan, no need to fear! We have plenty of DC Comics characters as well, including Batman. And of course, if he wants to dress up as Mordechai, we have that option!

Women's Purim Costumes

Purim Costumes for Women

Esther Purim CostumeFrozen II Elsa CostumeHarley Quinn CostumeWizard of Oz Glinda Costume
Deer CostumeWonder Woman CostumeBlack Widow CostumeFlight Attendant Costume

It seems like the most obvious choice to dress up as Esther, but if you are going a different route, we have plenty of options available. With the new Harley Quinn movie, Birds of Prey, hitting theatres, the dynamic Harleen Quinzel is sure to be a popular costume this year. Among other iconic classics include Black Widow, Wonder Woman, Elsa, and the Glinda from The Wizard of Oz. Have you ever thought of having a career change? Maybe your dream job as a kid was to be a firefighter. Another trend for Purim costumes includes occupational costumes. From nurses to cops, to a 'sexy flight attendant', you can dress up as whoever you want to be!

Purim Food

Purim Food

Similar to other holidays, Purim also has its own delicious food traditions. The most popular Purim treat is a cookie called hamantash (hamantaschen for plural). This cookie is said to represent Haman's pockets, Haman's ears, or Haman's tri-fold hat. It's really up to the individual as to what they represent. Whether you have a sweet tooth or are more of a salt lover, Hamantaschen go great with either a sweet or savory filling. You could always chow down a simple and plain hamantash but that would seem just plain wrong. If you're going to indulge, you better go all out!

Mishloach Manot

Another Purim tradition related to food is the deliverance of food baskets. It's a common tradition to deliver gifts of food to friends and family, continuing the idea that Purim should be a joyous holiday. If you don't plan on going to your synagogue or hosting a party, delivering mishloach manot ('sending of portions' in Hebrew) is a great alternative for you to drop by and spend some time with friends and family without having to host a group of people.

Purim Kreplach

[Source: Wikimedia]

If you're a fan of soup and dumplings, then you surely will love kreplach. This is a tradition that's often practiced by the northern European region. Kreplach is made of chicken soup and delicious, meat-filled dumplings. Yum!

When is the Feast of Purim?

Feast of Purim

Traditionally, the feast begins before sundown and proceeds late into the evening. This usually involves gathering friends and family together for a night of eating, drinking, singing, and enjoying each other's company. While there aren't any rules as to what you eat for Purim, many will enjoy a meal featuring meat, wine, and hamantaschen.

Purim Songs

Purim Music

With every great holiday comes great music. If you're looking to get the party started, you may find yourself wondering where to find some of the best Purim music. YouTube is a great place to start and has plenty of Purim playlist to get those feet moving. A few Purim classics include, "Hag Purim", "Leitzan Katan Nehmad", "Ani Purim", "Mischenichnas Adar", and "Shoshanat Yaakov".

So there you have it! Of course, these are just some ideas of what you can do to celebrate Purim. Similar to other holidays, some families have their own, unique way of celebrating. If you have suggestions for fun activities or new recipes for people to try, share them in the comments! If you're still looking for something to wear, be sure to check out all of our Purim costumes! And to everyone reading this, we wish you a Happy Purim!

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Ross Hewett-Smith
Ross Hewett-Smith

Ross Hewett-Smith is the Public Relations Specialist at Fun.com, where he earns coverage on national entertainment media like the Huffington Post, Good Morning America, and Yahoo. He has also been interviewed by a variety of world news outlets.

Ross is a hardcore Ariana Grande stan and would love to meet her someday met her July 8, 2019. He also makes music, plays video games (specifically Overwatch and Call of Duty), and pampers his dog, Miley. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram at @rosswalkersmith.

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