Jerusalem Day Celebrations

The date has passed.

Most flags are removed.

Commentators have spun stories with their biases.

The main stream media focused on a small group.

However,

Yom Yerushalayim, Jerusalem Day,

Hebrew sign for Jerusalem Day

celebrations in Jerusalem, Israel,

are always like no where else in the world.

Flag fro Jerusalem hanging on Jerusalem Day

Today Jerusalem has a flag,

image new pin Jerusalem

and an official pin.

tower of David on Jerusalem Day

The ancient Tower of David,

is always impressive.

Jerusalem mayor welcomes  people on Jerusalem Daty

In the morning of Yom Yerushalayim,

Mayor Nir Barkat and his wife Beverly

greeted the public inside the gardens.

Music in Tower of David on Yom Yerushalayim

While a live orchestra played music

vistiors sitting and listening to music Tower of DAvid

and visitors sat and enjoyed their program.

family tours in Yemin Moshe on Jerusalem Day

Hundreds of families took tours of Yemin Moshe.

March starting on Jerusalem Dayt

Thousands of young people gathered in Gan Sacher,

Sacher Park to march with Israeli flags to the Old City,

to the Kotel, the Western Wall.

crowd at Kings Hotel on Yom Yerushalayim

Tens of thousands of people, singing, dancing, and

celebrating the reunification of Jerusalem in 1967.

Hebrew sign for Jerusalem day

This year other events were planned,

as this one for families at the new First Station.

There were prayer services,

and official invitation only ceremonies.

A free concert was held at Kikar Safra, Government Square.

Once again the annual “White Night” celebration

blasted until 4 am from Gan Sacher.

I do not appreciate that one!

In schools and kindergartens there were special programs,

Jerusalem Day nursery school child with bubbles

with art projects songs, and even bubbles.

The main stream media missed hundreds of thousands

of people who were not news worthy.

For those who find  Jerusalem Day objectionable,

please remember,

in 1965,

no Jews were in the Old City.

Under control of Jordan from 1948 – 1967,

no Jews could enter ANY of the gates.

Jerusalem Old City Walls

In 1965,

this was as close to the Kotel, the Western Wall,

 American Jewish tourists could get.

Photos were taken from across No Man’s Land,

safe from Jordanian sniper shots.

Yom Yerushalayim should be appreciated every day.

 Our friends have posted on a bench by their home,

a short passage from the Prophet Zechariah,

on his vision for the future,

Verse in Hebrew about children playing on the streets of Jerusalem

Jerusalem will be full of boys and girls

celebrating in her streets.

And that is what was really happening

on Yom Yerushalayim,

on the real Jerusalem streets.

Israel Museum Big Birthday Bash

Offering free admission at one of Jerusalem’s favorite sites,

 The Israel Museum’s 50th birthday party

attracted thousands of people.

cupcakes with Israel Museum art

Special cupcakes

drinks at Israel Museum party

and colorful drinks were provided for visitors.

children's wing Israel Musteum

The children’s wing and new play area were filled with children.

Israel Museum party actor

Actors entertained in the passageways.

actor in black costume

Not new statutes,

but men were dressed in black and moving

 slowly around entertaining the young crowd.

Israel Museum for chldren

I was impressed with these two girls

who were entertaining themselves,

using their paper art project to test the water currents

in the flowing waterfall near the steps.

Future scientists? For sure!

balloons at Israel Museum party

What is a big birthday party without lots of balloons?

Shimon Peres and Jams Snyder at Israel Museum

Former President Shimon Peres was at the opening of the museum

exactly 50 years earlier.

Museum Director James Snyder presented him with his old photo,

crowd at Israel Museum

as the crowd tried to get a view of the official ceremony.

art heart Jeff Koons

This heart by Jeff Koons which is on loan to the Israel Museum

for its 50th birthday year took a little help to unveil.

large cake with edible art work at Israel Museum

But the huge birthday cake with edible art works on top,

took only minutes to disappear,

people at Israel Museum party

 and those who got cake and balloons left smiling.

Teddy Kollek had a vision as mayor of Jerusalem, Israel,

and in 50 years the Israel Museum has matured.

Happy Birthday

and many more great years.

9 Jerusalem Lag B’Omer Favorites

Confession:

Lag B’Omer in Jerusalem, Israel, is not my favorite holiday.

I prefer to close my windows and hide inside,

but I ventured out to see what was happening,

and here are my favorite sights:

getting ready for bon fire

1. Wood of all kinds is collected and burned, but a baby crib?

bonfire on lag b'Omer

2. One fire shows why wooden pallets are popular.

lag b omer bonfires

3. The Jerusalem Theater in the background

glowed like the many fires in park below.

bonfires Jerusalem Lag B'Omer

 4. There were many, many fires in that park.

First Station at night

First Station, on the other hand, was not the place to be

on Lag B’Omer night as most of it was closed.

Many people stayed out all night around the fires,

but during the day with no school,

children needed something to do.

face paint

5. Attentive faces and face painting at

Lag BaOmer celebration for children

6. Chabad Rechavia parade and event with Rabbi Goldberg,

always favorites of Jerusalem families.

Gan Sacher on Lag B'Omer

Gan Sacher, Sacher Park, looked big, green and beautiful.

music and party in patk

7. Musicians  under a tree attracted an afternoon crowd.

I would have stayed longer to listen,

but I had to head home for dinner.

in Valley of cross no cars

8. This walking/biking path in the Valley of the Cross

had huge boulders to keep vehicles away,

yet people would move them and drive towards Gan Sacher.

Now one simple bollard does the job.

As I was marveling at the cleverness of that improvement,

I saw a man in an underpass taking advantage of the echo.

Differedo being played in Jerusalem

9. He was playing an Israeli didgeridoo.

The instrument was first crafted by Aborigines

from branches hollowed out by termites,

its sound has been improved using Israeli technology.

They are used at a corroboree,

Australian Aboriginal ceremonies usually held

around a campfire at night with singing and dancing.

What a way to end a Jewish holiday associated with

campfires, music, singing and dancing!

You never know what you will find

on the Jerusalem, Israel streets!

Jerusalem: Roses, Riots, Politics and What Next

I am always concerned about what to share

on the weeks between holidays and special events.

roses and fountain

The Jerusalem roses are in bloom.

road construction outside Jerusalem

Construction on the new main road to Jerusalem, Israel,

is a massive on-going project.

Would anyone outside of Jerusalem care

inactive mail boxes

that the regular mailboxes are no longer going to be used?

mail box in Yemin Moshe from British

Tourists trying to mail a letter tried these

British Mandate post boxes in Yemin Moshe.

They gave up and went to find a Post Office.

Old and new, progress?

Restaurants open and close so often

I could fill a book with those photos.

mall Ben Yehuda

But Cofizz, the 5 shekel coffee and food place on Ben Yehuda,

has changed the center of town.

Cofizz is always busy, while the place next door has empty seats.

Copy cat places have mushroomed,

from King George Street to Yaffo Street.

It is easy to get a 5 shekel ice coffee now.

There were riots and plenty of press on that.

But, did you hear that there were thousands out Friday morning

for a biking event that went around the Walls of the Old City,

up to and through the Zoo in Malcha

from Jerusalem ibking evern

and back to First Station?

Israelis are far away in Nepal.

But at home did you hear about

Intel and EU science prize winner

the 12 teenagers who met with President Reuven Rivlin in

Beit Hanasi, the Israeli President’s residence?

5 high school students are to go to US to an Intel Science Competition,

and another 6 are to represent Israel in an EU science program,

and 1 is to attend a special science camp in Germany over the summer.

Israel ranked 11th for the happiest nation.

It seems hard to imagine if all you see are media reports of “the conflict.”

Karen Bass and Alcee L Hatings

Karen Bass and Alcee Hastings are two of many US Congressmen on tour

in Israel this week to see for themselves

what is happening.

SAcher Park Arab family eating

Everyday is not a picnic in the park,

Arab woman driving a man in her car

A Muslim woman driving a man is unusual,

Muslim man praying

but a Muslim man praying on the streets is not.

For the past few weeks,

wood for Lag Bomer bon fires

all pieces of wood on the streets, large or  small,

have been collected for

Lag B’Omer bonfires.

Meanwhile,

we wait to hear if there is a new government.

Old and new, always something on these streets.