It’s Israel Week, How Are You Celebrating?

yomhaatz-TCJ-ad2Brought to you by the Jewish Federation of Greater St. Paul, the Minneapolis Jewish Federation, and over 55 local organizations.

This week is a big week in Israel – it marks the country’s most somber day, Yom Hazikaron, as well as its most joyful celebration of independence, Yom Ha’atzmaut. The Twin Cities Jewish Community has a way for you to honor the former with a ceremony, celebrate the latter with an international rap star, and show your love of Israel every day in between. Below, a selection of ways to celebrate Israel this week. See the entire schedule at
Today, April 14: Yom Hazikaron
In Israel, more than one million people visit military cemeteries during the country’s memorial day, and the whole country observes a powerful moment of reflection as a siren blares. (Side note: In the United States, 43% of Americans go shopping on Memorial Day.) Commemorate this holiday the Israeli way by joining Twin Cities teens in one of two moving ceremonies to pay respect to those who have died protecting Israel and in acts of terrorism.
7 pm
Minneapolis: Sabes JCC, led by Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School Students
St. Paul: Mt Zion Synagogue, led by St. Paul teens
Tomorrow, April 15
If you’ve met the Israel Defense Force (IDF) soldiers who come to the Twin Cities each year through Parallel Lives, chances are you have a great memory of their visit. The soldiers love to hear from their second home in Minnesota, so drop them a line to say you’re thinking of them and the great memories you shared.
Tuesday, April 16
It’s only Tuesday, and there are still four whole days left until the work week ends. Go back to college for the day, where the parties last all week long, by joining Hillel for their Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration. It’s always a good time!
11:30 am – 1 pm | Northrop Plaza on the U of M Campus
Wednesday, April 17
Have you ever thought to yourself, “Self, I sure do wish there was a place where I could shake my booty to rap music but also do that Israeli circle dance I learned at summer camp”? News flash – that magical place exists! It’s called Sababa, an Israeli zumba class taught by Shira Shwartz. This Wednesday only, the class is free! Check it out – and come ready to schvitz.
If you’re more into listening to music than dancing to it, the St. Paul JCC presents a unique concert featuring musical talents from Sovev Kinneret in Israel. Jazz musicians Michal, Roi, and Ram incorporate not only jazz, but rock and pop with traditional Jewish folk songs. Hear their stories and their music Wednesday night at the St. Paul JCC.
Sovev Kinneret Region Musicians in Concert: 4 pm | St. Paul JCC | 1375 St. Paul Avenue, St. Paul 55116
Sababa: 7 pm | Sabes JCC | 4330 S Cedar Lake Rd, Minneapolis 55416
Thursday, April 18
Sorry guys, this one’s for the ladies. We’re all a tiny bit jealous of how tough Israeli women are, dutifully serving in the IDF. Tonight, channel that strength by learning some krav maga, the martial arts practice developed by the IDF.
6 pm – 8 pm | Barry Family Campus Activities Room | 4330 S Cedar Lake Rd, Minneapolis 55416
Participants must sign a waiver, contact Shana Cohen ([email protected]) for more details
Friday, April 19
It’s that time again: Shabbat dinner time! Tired of the same old brisket, kugel and challah? (Let’s be honest – we’re Jews. We don’t get tired of those things. But in the spirit of Israel week, let’s make like an Israeli and whip up some hummus!) Find delicious recipes for your Israeli Shabbat dinner at
Saturday, April 20
Some of us are fluent in Hebrew. Some of us learned a few dirty words on a teen trip to Israel. Wherever you are in your Hebrew knowledge, let’s brush up on a few phrases that might come in handy at Sunday’s big celebration. Find out how to say “I’ll have one falafel on a stick, please” and more right here.
Sunday, April 21: The Great Israel Get Together – Israel is 65!
It’s the celebration we’ve all been waiting for – Israel has been around for 65 years, against all odds. Join us for an explosion of Israeli culture infused with a Minnesota favorite– the State Fair! The Minneapolis Jewish Federation, the Jewish Federation of Greater St. Paul, and 55 organizations across the Twin Cities present the Great Israel Get Together, and you’ll find something for everyone: Israeli story time for the little ones, handmade Israeli goods, Israeli food on a stick, and more!
Believe it or not, one of Israel’s most popular musical groups is a hip hop group – and they’ll be performing live at the State Fairgrounds! HaDag Nachash will close down Yom Ha’atzmaut with their bass thumping hip hop beats starting at 6 pm – you don’t want to miss it! (PS They rap in English, too! Bilingual rapping – now that’s talent!)
Minnesota State Fairgrounds | 4 pm – 8 pm
For directions and parking, click here.
As always with a concert, after the show is the after party, and we’re delivering. Stay after the concert for an exclusive meet and greet with HaDag Nachash, then dance to music from DJ Chava Nagillah! Cash bar available.
Tweeting or Instagramming during Israel week? Use the hashtag #tcisraelweek!