10 Alternatives to Politics and Elections in Jerusalem

If you followed the headlines about Jerusalem, Israel, this week you saw elections, politics and more politics.

Party volunteers outside a Jerusalem voting place for Knesset 22

Our voting place was very quiet midday, though there were more party booths than last time. I went at that time hoping to interview voters in line, but there were none.

Jerusalem streets seemed strangely deserted on election day and the day after.

Israel election voting booth for Knesset 22

There were fewer paper ballots for political parties than the previous election so you might mistakenly think it would be simpler. President Rivlin has been busy working for a unity coalition government.

However, still, could we possibly go to election #3?

Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, I have cut an exhausting list down to 10 of many more happenings:

Mossad the movie at Jerusalem Cinema City

  1. GPO sponsored “Mossad the movie” a humorous diversion for invited media.

Palmach building site in Jerusalem Israel

2. But back on the streets, “A new beginning” was posted on this construction site near where we voted. I could write new construction and building posts every week!

President Rivlin hosts beekeepers before Rosh Hashana

3. In honor of Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, President Reuven Rivlin had his annual meeting with beekeepers. Three generations attended. The President was presented with new honey, branded with a photo of his late wife Nechama on the label dedicated to her memory.

End of summer at Jerusalem Theatre Israel

4. You know it’s the end of summer, not only by the cooler evenings but also by the Jerusalem Theater festival.

Jerusalem Israel end of summer festival at Jerusalem Theater

On the nights from September 16-19, the plaza was filled with music and celebrants.

Music at First Station after Shabbat by Feter Hendel

5. More music at First Station, with live music before Shabbat at Kabalat Shabbat and after Shabbat, at the Melava Malka celebrations. These are regular free events featuring various musical entertainers.   The group Feter Hendel played for their first time at the open stage venue.

Beit Avi Chai is one of many other locations which has a special music event this week.

Yemin Moshe Jerusalem Israel at night

The streets of Yemin Moshe are usually dark and quiet at night.

6. However, the sounds of the Solomon Brothers’ musical selihot filled the alleyways after Shabbat for the first set of the Ashkenazi selihot, the annual prayers prior to Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur.

sellichos in Yerushalayim at night in Yemin Moshe

As in the past, the women’s section was filled to overflowing and young women either stood outside to listen or left to find other services.

Jerusalem Great Synagogue on night selichos choir and chazan

At the Jerusalem Great Synagogue, the choir and Chazan led selihot. 

7. Same prayers, but a very different sound than the music of the Solomon Brothers.

Thousands attended selihot services at a long list of locations around Jerusalem.

Meanwhile, cafes lining the streets were filled with diners, and wine glasses emptied.

One couple was sharing a sushi platter, away from the cool night breezes.

Skateboarders were flying through the air in the Liberty Bell Park skatepark.

I passed dozens of tourists walking to late-night activities.

This time of year, before the holidays, weddings and engagement parties are planned.

Jerusalem Israel near Mamilla Mall an engagement site with flowers and lights and music.

But for the first time, I happened upon an elaborate set up for a wedding proposal! It looked like she said yes.

Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion with Bonei Zion Prize winners

8. The Tower of David hosted the Nefesh B’Nefesh Bonei Zion Prize Award Ceremony.

Mazel tov balloon

Mazel tov to all!

Colorful Israeli sunset

Headlines were filled with political positioning. But of those sunsets this time of year!

We also hear people are reading fewer books.

9. But in Jerusalem book launches seem more frequent. I shared here about Rabbi Meir Soloveichik’s new book. Recently Freddy Freundlich’s Born on the Right Side of the Tracks was a compelling story. Last week Cheri Tenenbaum launched her personal story in “Woman of Few Words.”

“Palestine Posts” compiled by Daniel Chertoff with a first-hand account of Jerusalem in 1947- 1949 was launched.  Chertoff read from the powerful and beautifully written letters of his father Mordecai Chertoff z”l who worked at the Zionist ‘Palestine Post’ which became the ‘Jerusalem Post’ during the critical years of the founding of the State of Israel.

10. Big excitement in sports – the Israeli Baseball team qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020!

Jerusalem contemporary art festival sign

And what’s next? For Heaven’s Sake!

The Jerusalem Biennale for Contemporary Jewish Art, with 200 artists, 30 exhibitions in 14 venues. The full listings can be found HERE

Table with honey and cakes and Shana tova, New Year Rosh Hashana

From the land of milk and honey, it is time for apples and honey for the new year 5780.

Jerusalem public bus with Rosh Hashana greeting of Shana Tova in Hebrew

Shana Tova!

Happy New Year from Jerusalem!

6 thoughts on “10 Alternatives to Politics and Elections in Jerusalem

  • September 25, 2019 at 11:17 am

    A brilliant and necessary compilation of alternatives to the political echo chamber. Such a pleasant relief! Thank you.

    • September 25, 2019 at 11:50 am

      Thank you! And there was more, but I had to keep it short enough for busy time of year. Shana tova.

  • September 25, 2019 at 2:39 pm

    Who knew there even was such a thing as an annual meeting between President Rivlin and beekeepers???

    Thank you for this, and for the R’ Meir Soloveichik post. I thoroughly enjoyed his talk.

    Shana tova u’metuka!

    • September 25, 2019 at 6:30 pm

      Yes were some cute photos of the little bees too, but time, space and edits. Shana tova.

  • Pingback: Gute Nachrichten aus Israel — Woche bis 29.09.2019 | abseits vom mainstream - heplev

  • Pingback: What elections - Israel Active

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.