Yom Ha’atzmaut 5771

As the sun sets and the many solemn Yom Hazikaron observances come to an end,

the varied and diverse celebrations of Yom Ha’atzmaut, Independence Day, begin.

In some communities, the holiday begins in the synagogue with

with a special evening thanksgiving service, as this one in Rabbi Benny Lau’s Ramban synagogue.

 Beginning at nightfall, stores and businesses close.

The mangals, BBQs  and charcoal have been hard to miss this week,

because as early as sunrise people are out looking for a good spot

to start grilling.

There were so many people headed to nature trails that the list of parks

that were closed for lack of space got longer as the day went on.

But in the center of Jerusalem, as usual, it was Gan Sacher, Sacher Park,

 where thousands of families and groups gathered-

some camping out from the night before,

others arriving early to get the perfect place,

 and a few lucky ones succeeding to find both privacy and shade.

There were  blue and white flags,

lots of blue and white flags, 

new and improved plastic hammers, 


and tee shirts,

lots of tee shirts.

Three helicopters flew over in formation.

followed by five F-16 fighter planes,

but it was the huge El Al jets that got the most attention.

Smoke filled the sky and cars were everywhere they could find a spot, legal or not, until late at night.

A day which started with the televised International Bible Quiz competition,

ended with the televised presentation of Israel Prize Honors.

Getting through the layers of security to sit in the audience took time, patience and a special ticket.

Certainly not the ‘real streets’ in the International Conference Center

 with government leaders at the dais waiting to congratulate the 10 distinguished honorees…

but what a way to celebrate Israel at 63.

Happy Independence Day!

0 thoughts on “Yom Ha’atzmaut 5771

  • May 12, 2011 at 5:00 am

    you captured the happiness with your lens. thanx for sharing.

      • May 15, 2011 at 11:37 am

        Do you have more pictures of Gan Sacher than the ones you posted? You probably didn’t see us. We were up the hill and to the left from the bathrooms and workout park. Under a tree, kind of away from other people. I actually wonder sometimes what you look like and who you are since I frequent a lot of the places that are in your pictures.

        • May 15, 2011 at 12:24 pm

          Will try and find you, lots of pictures of Gan Sacher, only used a few. But as I got near the bathrooms I got distracted by the line of ladies waiting and the total lack of disabled toilets… working on that post now…Outrageous! So many people in the park and no extra toilets! and NO facilities for disabled…really outrageous.
          So you can attest to the “real Jerusalem streets”!

      • May 15, 2011 at 12:25 pm

        Yup. I saw those lines. And then chose to pee in nature instead of standing in line forever for yucky bathrooms. I like your blog, btw.

        • May 15, 2011 at 12:32 pm

          Thanks…be sure and check back next week and share with your firends, maybe next year you will not need to find a bush to hide behind!


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