Out of this World: Israeli Space Week and More in Jerusalem

Out of this World: Israeli Space Week and More in Jerusalem

It is Israeli Space Week.

Conferences for researchers and 100 educational events for over 100,000 children were planned throughout the country.

The Jerusalem Bloomfield Science Museum had free entrance times with special exhibits.

Those who have seen the Ramon Crater will nod their heads at this announcement: The Israeli Space Agency and the Austrian Space Forum signed an agreement to simulate a manned Mars expedition in the Mars-like Ramon Crater in the heart of the Negev Desert in Israel.

Ramon Crater on way to Eilat Israel

If anything looks like the surface of Mars, it is the Ramon Crater.

Columbia was NASA’s first space shuttle, the first reusable crewed spacecraft in history. It carried out 28 missions and flew 160 astronauts. On February 1, 2003, after a 16-day mission in space, the shuttle broke up upon reentry to the earth’s atmosphere with seven astronauts on board, including Col. Ilan Ramon, Israel’s first astronaut. (No relationship to crater)

Israeli Space Week was an initiative of Rona Ramon and led by the Israeli Space Agency and the Ministry of Science.

For Israeli Space Week, the families of the ill-fated US astronauts came to Israel and met with President and Mrs. Rivlin at Beit Hanasi, the Israeli President’s residence.

Uniforms from members of Ramon Flight crew

The families presented the president with a copy of this NASA photograph taken at the training compound in 2002, several months before the disaster. The image shows the astronauts’ space suits hanging next to each other with American flags on their sleeves, and the Israeli flag on the sleeve of Ilan Ramon.

The latest news is that Israeli and German companies announced a joint moon venture.

Back on the ground, for thousands of years focus has been on Jerusalem.

David Breuer-Weil sculpture in Teddy Park jerusalem Israel

Since 2013, the sculpture “Centre of the World” by David Breuer-Weil has been in Teddy Park.

Look closely and you will see the Tower of David in reflection – and me upside down.

Jerusalem Light rail on Jaffa Road near King George Street

Jerusalem of old and new, is seen on Jaffa Road with crowds of shoppers and the light rail train.

New buildings near Independence Park in Jerusalem Israel

Jerusalem streets are filling with modern buildings.

Jerusalem biomed community JLMBIOCity startups

While Tel Aviv gets most of attention, there is a growing tech center also in Jerusalem.

In the rapidly growing Azriella College of Engineering, a JLMBioCity meeting was held this week.

Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan-Hahoum had this to say (apologies for this screen shot).

Advise for biomed tech startups

Advice was shared along with presentations of 6 of the 13 life saving companies highlighted.

Slide from Brainsway treatment for depression

The interested audience heard of new treatments in mental health, monitoring kidney function,

Special treatment to fabric to repel bacteria

and of treating cotton to make fabrics that not only reduce infection, but reduce wrinkles.

Some of the Jerusalem technology really sounds out of this world.

More photos from JLMBioCity evening   HERE

Jerusalem Israel street sign for Winter Noise Festival

Get ready, signs are up  for שאון חורף Shaon Horef, Winter Noise, the cultural street festival in a different location each Monday night in February. Jaffa Gate is planned for the 18th.

One never knows what in the world will be found at these annual winter “cultural” performances.

Tu Bishvat is over. The almond trees have bloomed.

And what in the world?

Purim costumes on display in Jerusalem Israel mall

Purim costumes were out at this Jerusalem shopping site near the main bus station. Early bird shoppers will find the best selection of Israeli policemen and IDF soldiers for boys and fancy dresses for girls.

Hamentashen in bakery display in Jerusalem Israel in January

Hamentashen. Ready. Set. Go.

No blast off here yet. Not ready to get ready for Purim.

In Jerusalem, Shushan Purim is to be celebrated on Friday, March 22.

There is still very much to do and happening on the Jerusalem streets.

 

Purim Colors in Jerusalem

It seems like ages ago, but Purim in Jerusalem, Israel, was celebrated this year on Thursday night and Friday.

Purim in Jerusalem family dressed in costumes

Families dressed up in costumes. In many neighborhoods they filled the streets as they went to synagogues, community centers, and hundreds of other locations for readings of Megillat Esther.

Purim for megila reading men in costumes

Not all participants dressed up, but many parents and children did, including the reader in this synagogue.

Pirate costume for Purim in synagogue

There were pirates below,

Purim costumes in Jerusalem Israel for megila reading

and fair damsels above. All quietly listened to the story of Esther and Mordechai and made noise when name of wicked Haman was read.

Jerusalem Purim costumes

Purim is a colorful time,

Rabbi Benny Lau poses in Purim costume with Yonks

with smiles a plenty.

Jerusalem Purim costume poop emoji

One never knows what costume you will find in Jerusalem on Purim,

Man dressed in costume pushing baby carriage.. Purim in Jerusalem

however, this man’s outfit stood out–and up–as he pushed the baby carriage up the street.

Tens of thousands were out on the Jerusalem streets on Friday. Some streets were filled with cars, and others were filled with celebrants, not all sober.

Purim costume little fireman Jerusalem Israel

Purim in Jerusalem is exciting enough to tire out even a fearless firefighter. The Purim marathon is finally over.

Jerusalem Marathon Finish line 2018

Now it is time to finish preparing for the Jerusalem Marathon on Friday, March 9, 2018.

Streets will be closed again and filled with colorful costumes as tens of thousands of runners and their supporters fill the Jerusalem, Israel streets.

Purim in Jerusalem More than Just a Day

Purim in Jerusalem More than Just a Day

It is Spring in Jerusalem, Israel, and the barren land turns green from the winter rain.

Valley of Cross Jerusalem Israel in spring.

The flowers pop up from out of the ground.

Rafefet growing from old rocks in Valley of Cross Jerusalem Israel

Even from deep in ancient rocks, new life and color emerge, as the rafkefet, the cyclamen,  thrive with the cool winter temperatures.

Flowers planted near Jerusalem Windmill in Israeli park

Planted flower beds are ready for longer days and warm sunshine.

Sounds of the Night Jerusalem Festival in Old City

The special Ai WeWei art exhibit at the Israel Museum is ending, while the annual Sounds of Night Festival in the Old City is coming soon.

But, this is Purim week in Jerusalem, Israel.

In Israel, it goes on and on for more than one day.

Many museums are free for children both on Purim and Shushan Purim this year, on Thursday and Friday.

Purim costumes for children on Agrippas Street in Jerusalem, Israel Arab woman looking at dresses

However, costumes have been displayed for sale for weeks.

Purim in Jerusalem, Israel parents taking photo of girl dressed as bride

Wedding photos are often taken near sunset in Jerusalem parks, but this miniature bride was getting her Purim photographs taken a week before Purim in the Rose Garden near the Knesset.

Purim costume Lego Man in Jerusalem Israel

After days of younger children going to school dressed in pajamas, upside-down and whatever clever theme teachers could think of next, high school students joined in the holiday fun. On King George Street, LegoMan was a colorful and clever idea.

Purim costume giant marionette in Jerusalem Israel before Purim

Marionette guy took a second to turn and pose on his way to school.

Purim in Jerusalem Israel costumes for school before holiday

These girls were on their way dressed in a theme, but went past too quickly for me first thing in morning. I will spare you all the family photos posted on WhatsApp as they headed out to school. We even had a poop emoji in the bunch.

Children behind school gate dressed in Purim costumes Israel

Activities, and especially dress-up, were the rage in schools for nursery age children throughout Israel.  These cuties, policemen, brides, princesses and more in the south were singing Purim songs for us as we passed by their playground.

Purim in Israel carnival for community by AMIT girls' school

Purim carnivals and other activities have been held since the beginning of the Hebrew month of Adar, with schools involving communities to celebrate in the fun.

Hamentaschen piled up in Machane Yehuda Market for Purim

Oh and the food. Hamentashen galore in a list of flavors growing annually. The days of only poppy-seed and prune are long gone, only memories.

The Purim seuda, the festive holiday meal, is enjoyed by Jerusalemites on Friday, and should begin early enough so as not to interfere with the onset of Shabbat. We are planning to start at 11:00 after reading Megillat Esther. Others are starting later and going into the Sabbath.

Meanwhile, it is time to get cooking. I used to think it was be good to have extra time to prepare for Purim, a one-day holiday that went by so quickly. Now I’m not so sure. Creating multiple costumes, sending treats to school classrooms, beside the usual preparing food gifts to send, it seems endless.

Purim in Jerusalem megila ready every hour AZZA ZAZA

For the 8th year, AZZA ZAZA, continuous readings of Megillat Esther are being offered by Chabad in the Rechavia neighborhood. They offer over 20 readings, every hour in various public locations near Azza Street.

There are more Purim celebrations and events in Jerusalem than we can list, but the municipality website has a few of dozens, in English listed HERE

Happy Purim Jerusalem street posters

Happy Purim!