11 Signs of Passover in Jerusalem

spring flowers in Liberty Bell ParkIn the streets of Jerusalem, Israel,

you can feel the holidays approaching.

People are arriving from around the world,

 tourists are everywhere.

OK, sometimes you can hear it too,

with people honking at rental cars unsure of their next move.

With a long list of things to do it was hard

to decide what to share first,

Sign Mummy at Israel Museum for Passover

the Mummy at the Israel Museum,

Passover in Jerusalem Israel

or maybe the special Passover and spring activities

at the Bloomfield Science Museum?

Jerusalem Israel sign for Matzah festival

The Matzah baking in Kikar Safra was great

for those who went and

Jerusalem Israel signs

it is unfortunately too late to see the Jerusalem Arts Festival.

However,

a sure sign Passover preparations are heating up,

Peasach preparations. boiling water to kasher silverware

large pots of boiling water can be found in multiple locations,

every last bit of chometz, bread products must be gone by Monday.

Children are out of school for the holidays.

Train Theater music for Passover

A Spring Musicale is at the Train Theater April 12- 18.

36 museums and attractions around Israel will be

 free of charge from April 12-16, thanks to Bank Hapoalim.

Passover sign for Begin Center

The Passover story at Menachem Begin Heritage Center

is one of the free events in Jerusalem,

also included are the Bible Lands Museum,

 the Museum of Islamic Art, and the Botanical Gardens.

Shabbat hadagdol drusha signs

Signs are posted for the Shabbat Hagadol derashot of prominent rabbis,

many synagogues will have special lectures this Shabbat.

Jerusalem Israel scene in spring

Look around and you will see signs

spring flowers in Liberty Bell Park

and smells of spring flowers along the Jerusalem streets.

Sign Passover Hebrew Jerusalem Israel

Look up and these signs line the road,

Chag Aviv Sameach,

Happy Spring Holiday,

is happening in the Jerusalem.

See Passover Matzah Baking in Jerusalem

See Passover Matzah Baking in Jerusalem

Passover is a special time in Jerusalem.

Before Passover you can find almost anything discarded on the streets.

This week I saw an old bed, a new can of flavored bread crumbs,

electrical appliances, and a single, brand-new white shoe out by the trash.

In Kikar Safra, Municipal Square,

a Matzah b’Kikar Festival was held outside City Hall.

The weather was perfect last week for the event.

Among the attractions were

Washing clothes Jerusalem Matzah Festival

a woman washing clothes by hand,

Actors at Matzah Festival in Jerusalem Israel before Peasach

an old time junk dealer,

Actor dressed as tailor in Jerusalem Kikar Safra for festival

a spiffy tailor,

Old fashioned photographer in Jerusalem Israel before Passover

and a vintage photographer.

But the main attraction,

matzah baking Jerusalem Israel

was matzah baking.

matza baking before Pesach

It featured four ovens fueled by gas tanks.

Aprons, gloves and perfect timing were mandatory

Baking matza at Kikar Safra Matzah Festival

for those at the work tables in the preparation tent.

matzah baking

Staff in orange vests carried the

used stainless steel rolling pins

to be cleaned of every last drop of dough

between batches of baking matzah.

Matza baking

Dozens of wooden poles were lined up outside,

baking matzah

for the workers to rush the rolled dough to the ovens.

Hand made matza

Boxes of the hand-made baked matzahs

were ready for the participants to take home.

It is a shame more people did not take advantage of this

public, free event held over two afternoons.

I’m glad I saw a full page ad in a Hebrew paper,

but I know many heard about the matzah baking too late.

Matzah Festival in Kikar Safra Square sign

The festival signs were up along some roads,

but it was impossible to read the small print from moving cars.

Baking matzah in Jerusalem, Israel, before Passover,

just one step in preparation for the holiday.

Spring in Jerusalem

Spring in Jerusalem

It’s spring in Jerusalem, Israel.

Purim is over.

The Jerusalem Marathon is over.

While Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was in China,

the streets were a bit quieter without his noisy PM motorcades.

Also last week, President Reuven Rivlin was in Vietnam.

But now we hear new, noisy motorcades:

Slovakian President Andrej Kiska is visiting Jerusalem,

Flag near Beit Hanasi for President of Slovakia

and flags marking the official visit are flying near Beit Hanasi,

the Israeli President’s Residence.

Actually, thousands must be visiting Jerusalem,

judging by by the large number of buses on the streets.

Newspapers are filled with ads for everything from paper dishes

to electronics, before the Passover holiday.

Sales abound, but many cannot afford the holiday necessities.

Tuesday was the official Good Deeds Day,

and school children all over Israel participated.

But for some, everyday is good deed day.

For the third year, Rav Yitzchok Grossman of Migdal Ohr,

Passover food boxes

brought holiday provisions and volunteers to Beit Hanasi.

Boxes of Pesach food for poor packing at Beit Hanasi

President Rivlin joined in preparing packages

for Israelis who are in need of assistance for the holiday.

Another name for Passover is the Holiday of Spring.

Spring blossoms Jerusalem Israel

Blossoms are popping out on trees,

Pot of flowers at beit hanasi

not just in pretty planters

Pink flowers in garden at Beit Hanasi

and flower beds.

In honor of the spring planting again this year,

Nechama Rivlin at Beit Hanasi

First Lady Nechama Rivlin invited students,

Arab and Jewish girls, to help her plant

Children's corner garden at Beit Hanasi

in this corner of the President’s gardens.

For those of you who were not there today,

Orange and olive trees in Beit Hanasi gargen

this was one view of the gardens,

with olive and orange trees in the distance,

View of synagogue of Beit Hanasi Arden

and the synagogue across the lawn.

But my favorite

Garden table at BEit Hanasi

was just sitting here and enjoying the warm weather

while taking a photo on Instagram with my new phone.

Photos do not capture the beauty of spring in Jerusalem,

but will have to do,

as rain and cooler temperatures are forecast.

Now – what next?

For those of you who asked to be informed:

Beit Avi Chai has a Maghreb Festival going on,

celebrating North African Jewry, from March 27 – 30,

with a variety of programs, some with no entrance fee.

Kikar Safra again has matzah baking and activities,

on March 29-30 afternoons, and is also free.

Children are out of school for holidays starting soon,

and museums are gearing up and getting ready for them.

The Bible Lands Museum has special exhibits to learn about ancient Egypt.

The Tower of David is always a great place to visit,

Tower of David night time inside Jerusalem, Israel

day or night,

and now has new special programs in English.

Check them out HERE.

As always so many things happening in Jerusalem!