Israel Fest 2015,
Sunday, May 17 from 11:00am-5:00pm.

Calling all willing volunteers! This annual endeavor would not be possible without the tremendous assistance from all of our generous helpers. If you are available on May 17th to volunteer, please visit the online signup page.


israel festIsrael Fest at the Simon Family JCC, a Celebrate Israel event

The biggest outdoor community event of the year, celebrating Yom Ha’Atzmaut, is fast approaching!

On Sunday, May 17th from 11am-5 pm, come to the JCC for a day of fun with the whole family. From Israeli cuisine to the return of the Israeli band Hataklitim, from activities of all sorts to the Bar Kocva Israeli Art Expo, the Simon Family JCC will be moving and grooving with all things Israeli at our annual festival celebrating Yom Ha’Aztmaut.

An additional reason to celebrate May 17th this year is that this day also happens to be Yom Yerushalayim, the Israeli national holiday commemorating the reunification of Jerusalem and the establishment of Israeli control over the Old City in the aftermath of the June 1967 Six-Day War.

The JCC’s Israel Fests of the past are remembered for delicious food, and this year promises scrumptious edibles once more. Eleven food vendors will sell Israeli and Jewish cuisine as well as fruit smoothies, cotton candy, hot dogs and fries.   As they did last year, all area synagogues and Beth Sholom Village will be vendors. Exciting entrees include traditional Israeli turkey shwarma, stuffed grape leaves, falafel, hummus, poached salmon and more.

Returning from last year, the Hataklitim band covers pop hits in Israel. The band plays in Tel Aviv and other cities in the “center” of Israel. Singing only in Hebrew, they deliver fun, upbeat and light music that “makes you want to jump up and down,” says band member Yaron Halfon. Hataklitim plays Israeli hits from the ‘80s and ‘90s including covers of Mashina, Tislam, Benzin, Gidi Gov, Shalom Hanoch, Monica Sex, Fortis & Saharov, Arik Einstein and much more.

The camels return! If you didn’t have a chance to ride a camel last year, be sure to get a selfie at this year’s Israel Fest! And for those who love miniature farm animals, the petting zoo is coming back as well.

Other activities to enjoy are inflatables, monkey motion ride, face painting, arts and crafts, caricatures, balloon animals and a new “ask the Rabbi” booth.

Local vendors in our “shuk” will sell their jewelry, art and other wares. New this year is the Bar Kocva Israeli Art Expo, featuring the work of 45 Israeli artists and over 2,000 pieces of handcrafted fine art, Judaica, ceramics, wood, sculpture, glass and jewelry.

“Think ahead to the gifts you’ll need for holidays,” says the artist Bar Kocva Moshe, artist and owner of the traveling expo. “This is a wonderful opportunity to buy outstanding items found in galleries and fine stores internationally.”

Israel Fest is the third of four events in the Simon Family JCC’s Celebrate Israel Series, presented by Charles Barker Automotive. Be sure and come to the JCC on May 17th for Israel Fest, where you can also buy your tickets for our closing event, David Broza Live at the Sandler Center the following Thursday, May 23rd, at 7 p.m.