Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Haber

Rabbi, Los Angeles, CA

It is permissible to attend the party if necessary as long as the following conditions are met. (The permissibility of the entertainment and similar issues, while worthy of discussion, will not be addressed in this post.)

If the event is held at a non kosher restaurant or an exclusively non kosher venue such as a country club then it is forbidden to attend at all because of Maaris Ayin.

If the venue has both kosher and non kosher caterers, as is common in many hotels, and the affair is catered by the non kosher caterer, then one is permitted to attend the affair, they may however not eat even if their food happens to be kosher. This would apply to an event held at the office itself or a private home as well; one may attend, but not eat at all.

If the event is catered by the kosher caterer then of course they can enjoy fully.

UPDATE 12/23

for further study you may want to read this excellent article

By Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Haber

Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Haber is sought after by all who know him for his Halachic and practical advice. His keen ability to put complicated matters into a digestible perspective coupled with his ability to get the facts, make him the perfect blogger to help us all “Do It Right”.


  1. YHaber

    We need some sources here. What about a Christmas party? What about a party in the Social hall of a church?

  2. TH

    We are discussing all sorts of office parties, including Holiday parties.
    Most Church social halls have exclusively non kosher caterers rendering it a moot issue. As we discussed, one may not attend a function in a venue that has an exclusive non kosher caterer.

  3. Sender

    Assuming that business is not a factor. I wonder if it is advisable to accept invitations to ‘Holiday Parties’ Is it preferable to socialize with friends in a Shul/Simcha setting?

  4. mommy

    it is great, but needs an opening line, addressing wether these are business related, neighborhood social events, religious overtones.which is not sufficiently addressd by saying you are not discussing the entertainment at this time.
    also, its not on my front page either, Harry.
    now, can we do something about that picture? you look like a college professor. can we substitue one of you at the grill, or that one behind the desk lined with money in peekskill – no, not the one lying on the floor drinking from an overfull coffee cup.
    in other words,
    Love, mommy

  5. Gil Student

    Thank you for the link.

    Don’t you think you are being very strict on Maris Ayin? R. Hershel Schachter told me that it depends on what people think and for a business event in a business district, you can assume that there is no Maris Ayin. Also, kosher food can be delivered in a way (plastic, sealed in a bag) so that everyone looking will realize that it is different from the regular food that is served.

  6. TH

    My opinion on Maaris ayin is not my own, it’s what I have learnt from my Rebbeim. That being said, I am glad you quoted R. Shechter, I had heard there were more lenient opinions, but didn’t have any good sources.


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