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Yom Hazikaron & Yom Haatzmaut Are Quickly Approaching: What That Means

Renee Eder on Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Israel was established 69 years ago, in 1948. Since I can't be there to commemorate this glorious day in history,  I will explain how they do it in Israel (and have an Israeli dessert to celebrate!)

In recognition of  the establishment of Israel, two holidays were added to the Israeli calendar: Yom Hazikaron (Memorial Day) and Yom Haatzmaut (Independence Day). In Israel, these holidays are observed as national holidays- one as a somber day of remembrance and the other as a day of celebration.

Yom Hazikaron

The Israeli Knesset established Yom Hazikaron as a Memorial Day for soldiers who lost their lives fighting in the War of Independence and in other subsequent battles. In observance, national memorial services are held in the presence of Israel's top leadership and military personnel and many religious Jews say prayers for the souls of the fallen soldiers at this time. Yom Hazikaron in Israel will begin this year on the evening of Sunday, April 30 and ends on the evening of Monday, May 1. 

Yom Haatzmaut 

Yom Haatzmaut, or Israeli Independence Day, marks the establishment of the modern state of Israel in 1948. In Israel, many people hold parties or sing and dance in the streets to celebrate and fireworks are set off. It is also common to display the Israeli flag prominently on homes and cars. Many religious people may read the Torah, pray, or blow the shofar (an instrument made from a ram's horn). Yom Ha'atzmaut 2017 will begin on the evening of Monday, May 1 and ends on the evening of Tuesday, May 2.

Why These Holidays are Linked

The message of linking these two days is clear: Israelis owe their independence -the very existence of the state - to the soldiers who sacrificed their lives for it.

Celebrate Israel's Independence Day at the J

To celebrate Israel's Independence Day, the J presents: IsraTED: Israeli Stories Worth Sharing on Tuesday, May 2, at 7pm, with speakers including President of the JCCNV, Scott Brown, Executive Director, Jeff Dannick, Anton Marks, Gloria Graham, Ella Tessler, and more. Also, coming up later on May 21 is the Israel Fest: Israel @69. Hope to see you at these events!


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