From Jerusalem Firgun, Fun and Food

From Jerusalem Firgun, Fun and Food

It started in Jerusalem, Israel, six years ago.

July 17th is International Firgun Day.

Everyone is invited to join from anywhere in the world, sharing the spirit of #Firgun

(Hebrew: פרגון) an act of kindness performed solely to make another person feel good.

How do you celebrate Firgun Day?

You come up with a firgun, a compliment, a kind word, a small pat on the back for someone (person, business or group) and post it on any social network, adding a photo or video and the hashtag #Firgun.

Or just say something nice to someone you know to pleasantly surprise them.

“Say Something Nice, Make Someone Happy”

Whoever thought up ‘Windows’ for the September Mekudeshet Festival is really clever.

Structure called Windows for Mekudeshet Festival

This structure called ‘Windows’ has received attention since it went up last week in the center of Jerusalem. The house of windows is made out of 550 windows from all over Jerusalem, in a variety of shapes, and from various time periods.

Jerusalem Israel park with horse stature and Windows

The location is called Gan HaSus or HaSoos, Horse Park, well, because this horse is in this Jerusalem park.

The windows were collected and preserved for decades by the late Yoram Amir, an artist, photographer, activist, and lover of people and Jerusalem who recently passed away.

Windows Jerusalem Israel festival called Mehudeshet

These posters tell the story of the exhibit in three languages.  The Mekudeshet website promises that on every Wednesday from afternoon to dusk the place will be full of surprises.

Windows as seen from behind Gan Hasoos Jerusalem Horse Park

‘Windows’ is set back from King George Street, and is located near the water fountains. These rescued windows are from condemned or abandoned buildings. Just before his death, Amir joined forces with Mekudeshet, the Jerusalem Municipality through Eden, the Jerusalem Center Development Company, and artists Itamar Faluja and Lili Peleg to construct a structure filled with majesty and presence. Amir’s final gift to the city that he loved. #Firgun

sign for Jerusalem event Hebrew is in our blood

I missed an event at Beit Alliance on July 11 but liked this poster ‘Hebrew this is my Blood’ promoting the event.

Jerusalem Israel Mussara festival sign

Bogrim 2019 goes to the end of the month, with art and musical events for young people.

Front Stage performs at Ben Yehuda Mall this coming Friday afternoon. Last week hundreds of young people danced to live and loud pounding music on Friday afternoon. I am surprised I could only hear it on the municipality Facebook live feed.

Hebrew Jerusalem sign on street for good summer long holiday

Jerusalem street signs are up wishing children a pleasant summer holiday.

Jaffa Road Jerusalem Israel iced coffee in cate

Summer for me means it’s time to sit and enjoy an iced coffee.

Jerusalem Israel food truck at night

Food trucks are back in the Hinnon Valley near the Cinematheque on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights again this year.

Down dozens of stairs, people came to stand in line to buy sushi and three other food offerings. Every week there are to be four options, in addition to beer and wine trucks.

Jerusalem Food Truck Festival in Hinnon Valley at night with full moon

Under the full moon with live music, people sat at the few tables or on the ground. What a great view they had for the moon and its partial eclipse.

Jerusalem Israel at night from near Cinematheque toward Old City walls

OK, just for this Jerusalem view I am glad I went to check it out.

Jaffa Road sign for Overall at Tower of David

OVERALL is this week at the Tower of David Museum. Fashion and more in twenty locations throughout the expanse of the Mamluk monumental complex.

Events at the Tower of David are always a photographer’s delight. #Firgun

This one called OVERALL has everything from making lapel pins to a Met Gala (like in NYC) exhibit to designing with a 3D pen and more.

Tower of David where the very old past meets the very modern future.

Tens of thousands, record-breaking, numbers of tourists, have come to Jerusalem this year.

93% of tourists said they were happy with their visit.

I hope they had time to enjoy what’s happening on the Jerusalem streets,

Jerusalem full of fun and food and #Firgun.

 

 

Jerusalem Gateway Project Closes Shazar Street

Jerusalem Gateway Project Closes Shazar Street

Oh, Jerusalem, Israel.

Does anyone remember chugging up the Judean mountains on old winding Route #1,

slowly, painfully riding in an old bus or open lorry to sleepy Jerusalem of old?

Today new buildings are going up, and all with elevators.

Jerusalem Israel Agrippas Street new building

These old shops on Agrippas Street are the site of new renovation in the center of town.

Jerusalem street near Yaffa Road and Machane Yehuda Market

In Jerusalem, street closings for construction occur often and without notice on these small roads.

But for the new Jerusalem Gateway project construction, ads were placed weeks in advance in both the Hebrew and English media for this important street closing on July 14.

Jerusalem Israel route one at night before Shazar closed to private vehicles

The Route #1 entrance to Jerusalem by the bridge on Sderot Shazar will be closed to private vehicles until the year 2022.

So of course, I had to take one last photo at night.

Construction for Jerusalem Gateway near Prime Minister's Office

Building up and up in Jerusalem has become a recurring theme.

Jerusalem Gateway construction

Building up at the Jerusalem Gateway project for the new government offices is seen here.

Building apartments in Kiryat Moshe Jerusalem Gateway project

This Kiryat Moshe building site has been cleared and new housing towers are set to go up.

Jerusalem Israel String Bridge

Down Herzl Boulevard the light rail trains run regularly over the Chord or String Bridge.

I decided to go to the bridge two hours after the road closed on the 14th to see what was happening.

Sderot Shazar closed for Jerusalem Gateway Business Center

This was the view from the pedestrian part of the span walkway.

See the yellow ambulance near the center of the photograph?

It was finally able to maneuver around the traffic, equipment, and workers.

Sderot Shazar Jerusalem Israel closed until 2022 for new road

Private vehicles will not be allowed to drive straight.

They must turn right onto Herzl Boulevard or make a left turn on to Yirmiyahu Street before the bridge.

Jerusalem Gateway traffic changed men painted arrows on road

Workers were busy painting new arrows for the new traffic patterns.

Street change for Jerusalem Gateway Business center

Traffic lights were out and will be changed as well.

There were crews in multiple locations directing confused drivers and pedestrians.

Street first day of closing for Jerusalem Gateway

Sderot Shazar by Binyanei HaUma, the Jerusalem International Conference Center, was indeed cleared of cars. In the past, this was one of the most congested areas near the bus stops.

Construction for Jerusalem Gateway Shazar closed to private cars

Now only buses and a few taxis will be allowed to drive here.

Jerusalem Israel Navon Train station

The new Navon Station for the fast train has access also from Jaffa Street.

But folks with luggage who want to be dropped off by private car?

I did not see a way to do it near the entrance.

Well, the plan was to encourage public transportation.

Navon is across from the main bus station and also a Jerusalem light-rail stop.

Jerusalem Israel construction site for Gateway Business Center

The Jerusalem Gateway project is huge. This bit of construction can be seen through one of the fences.

Construction for Jerusalem Gateway

The Jerusalem Gateway closing of Sderot Shazar is for three years.

The construction of the government and business sectors will continue longer, meanwhile, Jerusalem’s skyline and traffic patterns are changing daily.

Drivers are advised to take Route #443 or the HaArazim Tunnel road of Route #1 in and out of Jerusalem until the year 2022.

Good timing, at least we have Waze, Moovit, and WhatsApp – 054-884323, now to help us get around town.

Who could have imagined any of this not so long ago slowly winding up the old Route #1 to Jerusalem?

 

Jerusalem One Week in July – 9 Events and Fireworks

Jerusalem One Week in July – 9 Events and Fireworks

Once again it was a busy week in Jerusalem, Israel,

a week filled with events I am compelled to share with you.

Let’s see how many of these you heard about.

  1. Last night was another ‘pitch night’ for Jerusalem Biotech startups.

Jerusalem Deputy mayor at JlmBiomed meeting at Azerili college

There are so many innovative new biomedical and tech companies it is hard to keep up. Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan-Nahoum is a regular speaker at Azrieli College for Engineering for JLM-BIOCITY pitch nights.  However, last night twenty Chinese visitors attended this meetup on their last night in Israel before returning home to cities throughout China.

Did they understand all the English?

No, but they took plenty of photos on their phones.

Israeli President Volunteer Awards at Beit Hanasi 2019

2. President Rivlin hosted an awards ceremony to honor twelve volunteers, individuals, and organizations.

singers at Israeli President Volunteer Awards at Beit Hanasi in Jerusalem Israel

While most of the Israeli media was out looking for riots, these young people were singing in the gardens for the Israeli President and invited guests.

President Rivlin and winners of volunteer awards at ceremony in garden of Beit Hanasi

The years of volunteerism and the diversity of projects of this honored group filled a souvenir book.

Photo for Jerusalem Unity Prize 2019 at Israel President's Residence

3. Again yesterday at Beit Hanasi, but inside this time, the Jerusalem Unity Prize was given to four groups. Three Israeli projects that promote unity and Moishe House for the diaspora. The award was started 5 years ago by then-Mayor Nir Barkat and the Fraenkel, Shaer, and Ifrach families in memory of their 3 murdered teens to promote the unity the families felt in their time of stress and mourning.

But there were more awards.

Diaspora journalism award in Jerusalem to Antonia Yamin

4. For journalism, one to Antonia Yamin for reporting for KAN broadcast media from Europe.

Zivla Klein award ceremony in Jerusalem Israel for journalism diaspora reporting

For print media, Tvika Klein won for his work with Diaspora reporting.

Dr Deborah Lipstadt speaking in Jerusalem Israel on antisemitism for Bnai Brith

The keynote speaker was Dr. Deborah Lipstadt who spoke on antisemitism.

Family of Deborah Lipstadt pose after her lecture on antisemitism in Jerusalem

She had support in the audience from family members. However, it was a shame many people were afraid to come because of the traffic delays the previous day. Seats were empty in what would have been a standing room only event.

Road construction can cause traffic to stop, but on that night there were no riots or serious delays.

US Embassy Jerusalem and IDI talk on religious freedom with Islamic sheikh speaking

5. The Israel Democracy Institute discussed the US Freedom of Religion report.

Who knew the US State Department has been issuing this report since 1998?

Jerusalem street signs for summer of 2019

Summer on the streets of Jerusalem, Israel and there are new signs.

6. The “Windows” exhibit in Gan Hasoos, Horse Park is causing buzz way before the Mekudeshet Festival begins in September.

Jerusalem Israel Hansen House entrance from outside gate

7. Hansen House hosts part of the Outline Festival events.

View of gallery at Hansen House for illustration festival

On July 4th which was advertised as opening day; this was the entrance to an exhibit.

view of one exhibit at Hansen House in Jerusalem Israel

Outline, illustration and poetry, and this was a speaker set up inside an audio offering.

Man looking at exhibit in Hansen House for an illustration festival called Outline

By night, this room was set up, during the day I was not allowed in.

Outline 2019 festival opening at Hansen House in Jerusalem

The courtyard was filled with music and people at night for the festival opening events.

During the day the guard did not know what I was looking for.

Jerusalem summer activities for children Hebrew street sign

Keeping children out of school safe and busy was high on families’ lists.

Jerusalem Israel First Station Hangar IDF exhibit

8. The IDF exhibit at First Station is an option. It is not busy in the morning, and you can get a security bracelet to enter on-site, not just online. However, I was not going to stand and wait for ten minutes in the midday sun to go inside when a guard at the door told me I was not allowed to take photos.

Jerusalem Israel Bell Park in summer

9. July 4th was a good time to go to Liberty Bell Park.

Jerusalem Israel Liberty Bell Park

The park was dedicated 43 years ago on the 200th-anniversary celebration of the United States Independence Day.

Liberty Bell in Jerusalem Park Gan Paamon

An exact replica of the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia is in the center of this Jerusalem park. Yes, with the crack.

This blog is getting too long to share more photos of the Terry Fox and Billy Graham memorial gardens and the many other sections of the Liberty Bell Park.

But in Israel on July 4th, one remembers that forty-three years ago was also Operation Jonathan at Entebbe.

Memorial in Jerusalem Israel Liberty Bell Park for Jonathan Netanayhu Yoni Park

The Yonatan Netanyahu Garden was quiet this year, while a bar mitzvah celebration was held nearby. For the 40th anniversary, there was a major event at the Jerusalem Theater.

What a week it was in Jerusalem, Israel.

Now for the fireworks which you have been waiting for.

For a first, the US Embassy Jerusalem had 4th of July fireworks at its celebration (on July 2nd).

My video on Facebook has had 45 shares and over 8,000 views.

The event was at the International Conference Center, the fireworks could be seen over the Knesset with the Israeli flag in view.

So much happened this week on and over the Jerusalem, Israel streets.