Hartford celebrates the past, present and future of the Jewish state
In an powerful show of unity and support for the State of Israel, this year for the first time 20 Jewish community agencies throughout the Greater Hartford area are coming together for eight days of programs and events focusing on the many different aspects of the Jewish state. Spearheaded by the Mandell JCC, the Israel Festival will kick off on Monday, April 20 and run through Tuesday, April 28.
“As a community we are always stronger when we work together, and I am so pleased that that the JCC Shaliach Raz Newman, took the initiative in bringing the community together around this project. We all share the same interest in uniting for Israel,” says David Jacob, executive director of the Mandell JCC. “Israel is a rich and diverse mix of old and new, holy and secular, archaeology and technology, politics and culture. This is our chance to celebrate Israel’s people, food, arts, music and film, literature and travel, history and future.”
In addition to the following schedule of programs, the JCC will also feature two exhibits in conjunction with the Israel Festival (see p. 19).
All Israel Festival programs will be held at the Mandell JCC, 335 Bloomfield Ave., unless otherwise noted. For more details visit mandelljcc.org or call (860) 236-4571.
MONDAY, APRIL 20
An Evening with Anita Diamant, author of The Red Tent and The Boston Girl; followed by a festive Israeli dessert reception; 7:30 p.m., Beth El Temple, West Hartford. (860) 233-9696. $25/in advance; $30/at the door.
TUESDAY, APRIL 21
Yom Hazikaron Ceremony, honoring the fallen victims of Israel’s wars and acts of terror; 7:30 p.m.; (860) 236-4571. FREE
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 22
El Al and Beyond Brunch & Learn — Featuring El AL Arilines flight ambassadors; 12 noon – 1:15 p.m.; (860) 231-6333, email@example.com. $5/JCC members; $6/non-members
Israel – Off the Page & On the Screen — Featuring Ron Leshem, author and screenwriter of the Oscar-nominated “Beaufort,” and producer of “Prisoners of War,” the Israeli series upon which Showtime’s “Homeland” is based; 7:30 p.m.; Emanuel Synagogue, West Hartford, (860) 231-6333, firstname.lastname@example.org. FREE, reservations requested.
THURSDAY, APRIL 23
Afternoon at the Museum of Jewish Civilization – Listen to a lecture by Dr. Richard Freund on “Archaeology and the Holy Lane,” dig up artifacts from the museum’s sandbox, and more; noon – 2 p.m.; at the University of Hartford, (860) 768-5018, email@example.com.
Israel – In the Air and On Your Plate – A pre-CAPA’IM concert, Israeli-style dinner, with El Al ambassadors, hosted by Moishe House Hartford and the Young Adult Division of Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford; 5:30 – 7 p.m.; (203) 640-1276, firstname.lastname@example.org. FREE, reservations requested.
CAPA’IM – An Israeli Music Experience – a concert by one of Israel’s premiere bands, followed by a free Hora Dance Party; 7:30 p.m.; (860) 231-6316. $20 (reserved seats)
FRIDAY, APRIL 24
Shabbat with an Israeli Twist – Shabbat service followed by an Israeli dinner with special activities for kids and a talk by an Israeli rabbi for adults; co-hosted by Beth David Synagogue, Congregation Beth Israel and Congregation Beth Ahm; 6:30 – 8:15 p.m.; at Beth Israel, (860) 231-6316. Call for dinner prices
SATURDAY, APRIL 25
Israeli DJ Dance Party at Tavern Downtown – For adults 21+; 9 p.m. – midnight; open bar until 10:30 p.m.; appetizer buffet; (860) 231-6333, email@example.com. $20/in advance; $25/at the door
SUNDAY, APRIL 26
Stand With Us – A Teen Event – Teens in grades 8-12 will be trained and empowered to become more educated about Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict; 10:30 a.m. – noon; Emanuel Synagogue, (860) 727-6110, firstname.lastname@example.org. FREE
Mike Kelly, author of The Bus on Jaffa Road – chronicle of the 1996 terrorist attack that took the life of West Hartford native Matthew Eisenfeld and his fiance; 7 p.m.; (860) 231-6339, email@example.com. FREE
TUESDAY, APRIL 28
“Body and Soul” — The State of the Jewish Nation – Screening of a documentary examining the connection of the Jewish people to the land of Israel, followed by a discussion with the film’s producer/director, Gloria Greenfield; (860) 727-6139, firstname.lastname@example.org. FREE (see review p. 9)