While writing the November edition of Jerusalem Mosaic, we have kept in mind that a trip to Israel is one that is usually planned well in advance. This is the reason we try to keep you – our readers – abreast, not only of what is on the agenda in the short run, but also of what is planned two months ahead. And with December around the corner, the festive season of Hanukah and Christmas are far from an exception.
Our feature story on cemeteries is by no means an attempt at the macabre; on the contrary, it is a deeply moving metaphor for the history of Christian settlement and exploration of the Holy Land throughout the ages.
Our events listing, this edition, is especially crammed with festivities, celebrations and a listing of the Hamshushalayim - Long Nights-Hot Winter in Jerusalem weekend entertainment festival, which – thanks to last year’s success – is becoming an annual tradition.
In short – a jam-packed digest of information to end one year and whet your appetite for the next.
December marks the festive season, during which Jews and Christians celebrate their respective feasts of light – Candles adorning Menoras or Christmas trees, oil flacons manifesting miracles or stars guiding wise men, beacons of hope in the long, cold wintry night.
Jerusalem’s centrality to the three, main monotheistic religions requires it cater to the festive needs of all, and with Christmas and Hanukah just around the corner, the city is primed to once again host a wealth of festivities, celebrations, Masses and jubilation.
Hanukah events will take place at the Bible Lands Museum, the Nahon Museum for Italian Jewish Art, at the Ein Yael Open Museum, at the Ben Yehuda Pedestrian Mall, at Mini Israel, at the Old Train Compound and a food fair in the German Colony. The Ben Yehuda Mall will host a nightly light-show, and the city’s skies will be adorned with a lazer-generated, giant Hanukiah (Menorah)
Christmas events will begin a week before, with concerts at Abu Gosh, Christchurch and Church of the Redeemer in the Old City, through Christmas Eve and Christmas Day itself, with a host of concerts and Masses at the city’s countless churches, and continue well into January, with New Year’s celebrations, Custodial processions throughout the city, and the Greek Orthodox and Armenian Christmas celebrations.
Finally, but far from least, following last year’s success of the Hamshushalayim - Long Nights-Hot Winter in Jerusalem long weekend entertainment festival, three long weekends from November 20th until December 16th, will include free entrance to major museums, tours, colorful street markets, roaming entertainers and a food festival. Sites and attractions will remain open into the wee small hours of the night – 2 am on Thursdays, for example; select restaurants and bars will be offering reduced prices, and hotels – 50% reduction on Thursday nights for weekend packages. Attractions include a farmer’s market in the German Colony, morning movies at the Cinematheque’s temporary location in the Jerusalem Convention Center, and tours with the Singing Bus, Jerusalem City Tours and city shuttles.
Nite Life at the Bible Lands Museum will include tours led by actors and guides on nitelife in the ancient world.
The Nahon Museum for Italian Jewish Art will hold a concert of songs from classic Italian films – Italian Film Duet, Between Naples & Madrid – Italian and Spanish songs from the 19th & 20th Century, and Songs of the Court – chamber music from the Baroque and till the present day.
Musica Eterna Moments at the David’s Tower Museum – a concert of Liturgical music
Video Art at the Blumfield Science Museum.
Moments from the East – Oriental dancing at the L.A. Mayer Museum for Islamic Art.
A cappella concerts at the Shrine of the Book (Givat Ram, adjoining the Israel Museum), and Jazz at the Davidson Center.
- Routine markets
- Past events
- "HAMSHU-SHALIM" Festival events
- Farmers and Artists fairs in Jerusalem