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I know that some people specifically daven ke-vasikin on Hoshana Rabbah. Is this only because they stayed awake all night and thus want to daven as early as possible, or is there a more direct and symbolic connection between davening ke-vasikin and Hoshana Rabbah?

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Many do it who haven't stayed up all night. I'm not going to post this as an answer, but perhaps it's because people need to go to work and the prayer service is very long, so they need to pray early (and once they're praying early, might as well pray k'vasikin on the yom hadin). – msh210 Oct 17 '11 at 16:18
related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/10765/2091 – Lee Oct 14 '14 at 17:21
up vote 2 down vote accepted

There are very big benefits of Davening K'vasikin, and often people can't do it for assorted reasons. Hoshana Rabba is a hidden Yom Tov, similar to Purim and Erev Yom Kippur, it is also considered the end of the Gezar Din. Many people want to take advantage of the Vasikin benefits in order to have a Gemar Tov.

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That does make sense, but can you think of any sources that touch on this? – Cislunar Oct 17 '11 at 20:57
@Aaron See Alex's answer to a related question – Lee Oct 14 '14 at 17:23

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