Four stars from CBS’ long running crime dramas-CSI: Miami and CSI:NY flew into Israel recently to examine the historical, religious and cultureal beauty of Israel as guests of the Tourism Ministry. The group, which included actors Jonathan Frederick Togo and Omar Benson Miller (stars of CSI: Miami) and Carmine Giovinazzo and AJ Buckley (stars of CSI: NY), as well as Vanessa Marcil (General Hospital and Beverly Hills 90210), visited Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, the Dead Sea and Masada and the Galilee, among other tourism destinations. The week-long tour represents the first time these actors have visited Israel.
Monday and Thursday nights in Jerusalem’s Old City have just changed for the better, with extended opening hours at many leading tourist attractions and new exiting cultural events late into the night. Beginning May 2012, the enchanting ancient streets of Jerusalem’s Old City will come alive with a number of cultural events and museums opening their doors late into the evening. An array of Viennese Waltz, Jazz and theatrical journeys will add to the many major tourist sites that have extended their opening hours into the night.
On Mondays the City of David will be open until 11:30pm, Old Yishuv Court Museum till 8pm. Those who book in advance will be privileged enough to experience a night tour of the Western Wall Tunnels. On Thursdays the Tower of David Museum will stay open until 7:30pm, while The Herodian Quarter Wohl Archeology Museum won’t close till 8pm. With so much to do and see across the capital, many visitors complain that there aren’t enough hours in the day. From now on, Mondays and Thursdays in the Old City just got longer.
For more information: www.itraveljerusalem.com
Throughout 3,000 years of history, Jerusalem served as a source of inspiration to poets, musicians and other creative spirits. Now, the Jerusalem Season of Culture summons the ancient muse for an annual summer showcase of the city’s contemporary cultural treasures. From mid-May through the end of July 2012, the city will host a series of riveting artistic experiences spanning the worlds of dance, music, poetry, philosophy, visual art, new media, and more. Highlights of the Jerusalem Season of Culture include:
May 13-18, 2012. The Season Prologue: The 3rd International Writers’ Festival
at Mishkenot Sha’ananim. This bi-annual celebration of the written word showcases leading authors from Israel and around the world in discussions, lectures and cross-disciplinary exchanges http://philosophy.mouse.co.il/en/
21-28 June. Going up: Jerusalem—Reality & Art Alongside Route no.1
Going up: Jerusalem is a creative act by a group of artists, social activists and intellectuals who will make a collective pilgrimage to Jerusalem over 5 days in pursuit of an alternative reality. The pilgrimage will end in a communal tent at the Wohl Rose Garden opposite the Knesset (Israel’s parliament), where the public will be invited to join along for a series of activities.
4-6 July. In-House, A Festival of Dance, Theatre and Music in Private homes
Jerusalem’s most intriguing homes open their doors to dance, theater, music and poetry for unique encounters between audience and performer. Inaugurated as part of the 2011 Season, the In-House Festival will focus this year on original productions commissioned specifically for the festival in partnership with local and international artists.
12 July. Contact Point. Leading Israeli artists will create live interventions, or “contact points,” with works of art on exhibit across the campus of the renewed Israel Museum. Dancers, actors, poets, philosophers, musicians, DJ’s, MC’s and more perform throughout the night at the Israel Museum, with the Silent Wi-Party taking place right under Anish Kapoor’s Turning the World Upside Down, Jerusalem.
12 – 19 July. Under the Mountain—A festival of new public art and an open exhibition with multiple participants, from Israel and abroad, that takes place in public spaces, via diverse media outlets, and in state institutions. It includes movement, media broadcasts, human behavior, political experiments, new monuments, artists as journalists, knowledge exchanges, and parties in the city that is at once home to Israel’s parliament, a world capital, and the heart of an ongoing conflict.
6,7,9 September. Jerusalem Sacred Music Festival. For 24 hours, musicians and artists from Israel and abroad, from different and varied traditions, will rejoice in the concept of “sanctity”, and imbue it with new life and meaning. The festival will unfold in
various locations throughout the city, and invite visitors on a 24-hour sacred-musical trip that will celebrate the sanctity within each of us, regardless of color, gender, religion or world view.
15 July – 15 August Artist of the Season. Recently graduated from the Bezelel Academy of Art and Design Gabriella Barouch ‘s Pop-up Shop that will appear in the city center for one month, featuring her original merchandise, as well as additional Jerusalem-inspired works by some talented local artists.
6,13,20,27 August. Balabasta Festival. The Machane Yehuda market is the stage for dancers, musicians, sculptors, actors and poets – all this among the colorful market stalls throughout the evening hours.
For the first time in history, visitors to Beit Hatfutsot – The Museum of the Jewish People, will be able to view the secret operational documents that led to the Mossad capture of Adolf Eichmann. In a new exhibition entitled “Operation Finale- The Story of the Capture of Adolf Eichmann” that opens in mid-February
at Bet Hatfutsot in northern Tel-Aviv.
In the exhibition; the Mossad – Institute for Intelligence and Special Operations – chronicles for the first time the story of the abduction through documents illustrating details of the operation – an undertaking which had never before been attempted. The evidence on display in this exhibition represents a body of material gathered during this unprecedented operation. It is rightly heralded as a life-changing event in the history of the State of Israel and the entire world, when the heroic deeds of a few allowed others to raise their voices so that a doubting world would hear the truth.
In 1960, Eichmann was abducted in a Mossad operation led by Isser Harel, who was assisted by a team from the operational unit of the Shin Bet (General Security Services). Eichmann was smuggled out of Argentina and flown to Israel with the aid of an El Al plane and crew. The operation assured that he would be tried in Jerusalem, the capital of the sovereign Jewish state. Eichmann’s trial marked the first time that the story of the Holocaust survivors was revealed to the entire world; their memories and testimonies drew a picture of the human spirit elevated to heights of strength and nobility in the face of heinous crimes too horrible to fathom.
The Mossad is lifting its veil of secrecy in order to educate those who were not alive during the Holocaust, as well as to salute the organizations and individuals in Israel and abroad who acted at great risk, and to give thanks to them and their families. A special thanks, also, to those whose names and identities must remain secret.
By Jerusalem Inbal Hotel, Executive Chef-MOTI BUCHBUT
10.5 oz. of poached, peeled tomatoes, cut into cubes
6 finely chopped stems of celery
2 finely chopped onions
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
17.5 oz. of veal cut into small cubes, boiled, rinsed and cleansed of fatty tissue
10.5 oz. precooked chickpeas
1/2 a cup of black lentils cooked in water
A handful of chopped coriander
A handful of chopped parsley
Juice from 2 medium size lemons
Pepper, salt and cumin
17 fluid oz. of vegetable stock
Sautee the onions & chopped tomatoes.
Then, place the onions, celery and chopped tomatoes in a cooking pot… season with salt, pepper
and cumin. Add the vegetable stock with the meat, chickpeas, lentils, coriander, parsley, garlic and the juice from one lemon. Cook the entire contents on a medium flame for 30 minutes (check for tenderness of the meat cubes). Season to taste (if necessary) and serve by adding some lemon juice on top.
Hundreds of marathon enthusiasts from across the globe have already registered for the second annual Jerusalem Marathon, which will take place on March 16. To date, entrants from as far away as Indonesia, Trinidad & Tobago, Singapore, China, North and South America, Europe, and of course from around Israel, have registered for the Marathon. In addition, several leading charities are set to benefit as runners seek sponsorship and donations for their participation. The 2012 Jerusalem Marathon includes a full marathon route, a half marathon and a 10km run. Early registration for the event remains open until January 15th, with more than 500 runners from more than 40 different countries who have taken advantage of the reduced registration fee. Most coming from the United States, United Kingdom, France, Italy and Germany, but with entrants from locations including Indonesia, Trinidad and Tobago, Singapore, China, Brazil, Argentina and Peru. Marathon organizers expect to have over 1,000 participants arriving from abroad, with an estimated 600 taking part in the full, 42 km track. The Mayor of Jerusalem, Nir Barkat, who is an avid runner, is expected to participate in the marathon. The Jerusalem Marathon takes runners on a route that tests not only the most experienced of runners, but also on a unique path through history; through the city so holy to Jews, Christians and Muslims around the globe. Participants will run on the cobblestones of the holy and ancient city, through the beautiful neighborhoods of Jerusalem, and through the modern city center of Israel's capital. The Jerusalem Development Authority (JDA), together with the Tourism Ministry and EL AL, has created a detailed tourist package for both domestic and foreign participants and their families. The package includes discounts and promotions for city hotels, restaurants, museums and attractions. Of note, the first Jerusalem Ice Festival, with its ice sculptures of key Jerusalem sites, an ice skating rink and more, will be taking place during the marathon weekend at the old train station. For further details on registration and the route, please visit http://www.jerusalem-marathon.com
A new 18 mile long, single rider biking trail was inaugurated in the Ben Shemen Forest, located between the city of Modiin and Ben-Gurion Airport.
Over the past decade mountain bike riding has become a very popular sport for local and foreign tourists alike. The Jewish National Fund responded to the high demand as well as to willingness to preserve the forest. These trails are designed to encourage the public to ride through the trails safely and in an environmentally friendly manner.
The Ben Shemen biking trail is composed of two trails that pass through the western part of the Ben Shemen Forest and continue up to the Modi’in Forest:
The optimum riding conditions in Ben Shemen forest allow different riding groups to enjoy the mostly flat forest, the great sequence of the undisturbed forest areas, the varied landscape roads, parking lots, observation spots and heritage sites that make the riding experience unique and enjoyable. Bike riders from all over Israel choose Ben Shemen forest as the most preferable destination for bike riding.
American actress Claire Danes, accompanied by her husband, English actor Hugh Dancy, made her first visit to Israel earlier this year, to film the Fox television series “Homeland”, based on the Israeli series “Kidnapped.”
In a recent interview on Conan O’Brien’s hit late-night show, Conan, the actress recalled her trip to Israel and her fascination with the nightlife in Tel Aviv, “Tel Aviv is… The most intense party town I’ve ever been to…” said Danes.
Danes, who recently won a Golden Globe award for Best Actress in HBO’s Temple Grandin, managed to take time out from her busy filming schedule to tour the country as a guest of the Israel Ministry of Tourism. Danes and her husband visited religious and historical sites in Jerusalem, the Dead Sea, Masada and Caesarea, as well as entertainment and cultural hotspots in Tel Aviv-Jaffa.
The Creative Coalition sent a 21-member delegation to Israel recently to meet with Israeli and Palestinian policy leaders, members of the arts, culture and business communities, and representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The week-long trip was organized in conjunction with the American Israel Education Foundation, an independent, non-profit, charitable foundation affiliated with AIPAC.
The Creative Coalition’s delegation to Israel includes a cross-section of actors, producers, directors, television, studio and publishing executives. Robin Bronk, CEO of HBO and actor Tim Daly (“Wings”) lead the impressive delegation, which included:
Emmy Award-winner Patricia Arquette (“Medium,” Holes); Emmy Award-winner Alfre Woodard (“Memphis Beat,” “Desperate Housewives,” Miss Evers’ Boys); Emmy Award-winner Joe Pantoliano (“The Sopranos,” The Matrix); CCH Pounder (“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” Avatar); Giancarlo Esposito (“Once Upon a Time,” “Breaking Bad”); Griffin Dunne (After Hours, My Girl, “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”); Richard Kind (A Serious Man, “Spin City,” “Mad About You”); Esai Morales (Fast Food Nation, “NYPD Blue”); Rob Morrow (“Numb3rs,” “Northern Exposure”); ICM Head of Independent Film Hal Sadoff; Emmy Award-winner Richard Schiff (“The West Wing,” Ray, A Solitary Man); Rachael Leigh Cook (“Perception,” She’s All That); Tichina Arnold (“Happily Divorced,” “Raising Hope,” “Martin,” “Everybody Hates Chris”); Steven Weber (“Brothers & Sisters,” “Wings”); Andrea Bowen (“Desperate Housewives,” “Boston Public”); Harry Hamlin (“Army Wives,” “Veronica Mars,” “L.A. Law”); KayCee Stroh (High School Musical, “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody”); Emmy Award-winner Howard Meltzer (Crazy Heart, Hysteria); and amNY Publisher Paul Turcotte.
“As artists and citizens we are always interested in effecting positive change, but in order to formulate ideas on how to develop further interaction between us and Israeli and Palestinian artists we have to develop some knowledge about the region and hear different opinions. We go through a lot of pains to educate our members,” Tim Daly added.
After being in Israel for a few days, Daly had already started to form several opinions. He told CSIIsrael.com
,” Israel is such a profound place. It is a vortex of so many beliefs, passion and strife, which makes it very complicated.” As for Israel’s image in the world, he candidly stated,” Israel could do a much better job when it comes to public relations. Information flies around the world so quickly and has a very short shelf-life. But if the wrong buzz words are bandied about, the damage lasts for a long time. And this is something needs to work on.”
Emmy Award winning TV talk show host and decorated ex-U.S. naval officer, Montel Williams, hosted nearly 100 American and Canadian “lone soldiers” at a soiree, which was sponsored by the Lone Soldier Center in the 5-star Inbal Jerusalem Hotel.
The Lone Soldier Center supports lone soldiers from abroad before and during their Israel Defense Forces service, providing meals, guidance and a sense of community.
Said Montel, “Because of my 22 years in the military, wherever I go throughout the world, I make a point of spending time with the troops. I very much identify with the Lone Soldiers Center program, and admire the strength and courage of these young men and women from around the world who put their lives on the line for Israel. The risk they and all Israelis face on a daily basis was put in sharp focus for me last night (Saturday, Oct. 29) when I learned of the missile attacks on Ashdod and other cities during the event last night. As I told the Lone Soldiers, my heart aches for those affected by these unprovoked acts of terrorism for which there is no acceptable excuse and no reasonable justification. Murder is not an acceptable political strategy, and I believe that the younger generation, on both sides, has a unique opportunity to come together to stop these senseless acts of terrorism. I am humbled that I had the opportunity to spend time with this exceptional group of young people.”
Montel spent 9 days in Israel, as part of a fact-finding mission revolving around
Israeli research into finding a cure for multiple sclerosis. Montel was diagnosed with the disease nearly 10 years ago. This was his 3rd trip to the Holy Land.