Yom Haatzmaut Favorites in Jerusalem

Two grad rockets fired by jihadists in Sinai landed in Eilat .

Lately, it seems that every time I do a blog post there is a new rocket attack.

By now everyone has heard of the bombings in Boston.

The first year I lived in Boston I remember how surprised I was that

 so many things shut down for the running of The Boston Marathon,

it is certainly not just another race in Boston.

So too, unless you are in Israel it is hard to imagine

how business as usual completely stops

for Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel Independence Day.

However, there was so much to do and so many events 

 that it was hard to decide where to go and what to attend.

First, were many prayer services,

which followed the solemn Yom Hazikaron observances.

Then the serious partying for Yom Ha’atzmaut began.

Sephradi rabbi

One of the largest musical religious services was at The Great Synagogue

where Sephardic Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar was  the guest speaker .

planes flying in formation image

A big favorite for most everyone is the aerial fly over

Planes over Jerusalem

which was almost cancelled this year due to weather conditions.

Deciding which photos out of hundreds to share has been hard,

but here are a few that hopefully will show what is so special

about this time of year in Jerusalem. 

Israeli flag, building site photo

The large flags draped down tall buildings.

Palestinian woman and son

The small flags on so many cars

Flag on bus image

and some buses.

Israeli flag street view

Flags were out in the old Nachlaot neighborhood

photo Israeli flags

and the new Arnona neighborhood.

Display of Israel flags image

 Some neighborhoods had so many

Israeli flag photo

 flags on display,

Israeli flags

 they even lined the roof tops.

Knesset building Israel flag

And of course flags are hung on the streets near and on the Knesset Building.

Yom Haatzmaut also marks the start of BBQ season, the time for mangals,

Getting ready for mangal image

 and grilling essentials are displayed everywhere.

Gan Sacher, Sacher Park, is usually is filled with tens of thousands

of people on Yom Ha’atzmaut.

Park with tents

Tents were set up for protection from bad weather by those

who came early to stake out their claim for a good spot.

Usually the choice spots are in the shade, but

 this year it was so windy and cold that a spot in the sun was preferred.

Cooking out in park photo

The park was not nearly as crowded as most years,

cook out on Israel Independence Day

making more space for those grilling meat

celebrating Independence Day

and having the traditional foam fights.

I could go on and on, but that would make this post really late.

Yom Haatzmaut night is one of only three nights a year

when noise is not restricted at 11:00 pm.

There were thousands of parties,

Yom haatzmaut celebration

many with young people singing and dancing,

and many ending with firework displays.

 I spent most of my day with one of my favorite groups,

group of lone soldiers

shown here as these lone soldiers posed at the end of a major mangal.

From around the world these young people came to serve in the IDF

and now they help other new soldiers

who have also left their homes and families to serve their people.

They are the promise of the future.

As Boston comes to grips with a deadly terror attack,

I hope that they never have to learn get used to bombs as Israelis have.

Happy Independence day sign

 Happy Independence Day.


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