American Jews Marking Israel’s 25th Anniversary with Songs Seminars and Expos
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American Jews Marking Israel’s 25th Anniversary with Songs Seminars and Expos

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Israel’s 25th year of Statehood will be celebrated throughout the country from now through May. It will be marked by music festivals, exhibits, seminars and special events.

With the theme, “Musical Offering to Israel,” hundreds of Jewish community groups, schools. colleges, and radio and TV stations will participate in the 29th Annual Music Festival, to be celebrated nationally under the sponsorship of the National Jewish Welfare Board (JWB).

Cantor Arthur Wolfson of Temple Emanu-El New York, chairman of the JWB’s Jewish Music Council, said that the “Musical offering to Israel” will highlight the musical bridge between Israel and America, giving recognition to the broad contributions of Jewish music throughout the world inspired by Israel’s Statehood.

In Portland, Oregon, the most comprehensive-exhibit of Israeli products, music and culture ever shown in the Northwest will be displayed May 6-10 at a local synagogue. Called Israel Expo North west, the exhibit will be held in Congregation Neveh Shalom. Guides in representative costumes will take visitors on tours of the expo, sponsored by the Los Angeles Israeli Consul, the Israel Government Tourist Office and El Al Airlines.

A performance by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Zubin Mehta, will be the major attraction in Los Angeles. Sponsored by the Jewish Federation-Council, it will be held this coming May 15 at the Sports Arena.


A number of New York youth will be celebrating the 25th anniversary in a different way. Under the sponsorship of the American Zionist Youth Foundation, Premier Golda Meir will address 24 local communities and answer questions by means of telephone hook-ups. Mrs. Meir will be joined in her home in Jerusalem by a number of Israelis who will also address the New York communities. This takes place on May 6.

In suburban Long Island, hundreds of local Jewish families are expected to gather together today at the Shaarei Zedek Congregation in Hicksville, to usher in this Passover season. This seder, which is under the sponsorship of Hashachar, the youth movement of Hadassah, is entitled “2000 Years of Life, 25 Years of Liberty.”

Colleges and universities are also celebrating Israel’s anniversary as exemplified by Hofstra College’s Festival of the Arts. Sponsored by the B’nai B’rith Hillel Foundations of various Long Island college campuses and under the guidance of local Long Island student leaders, the all-day campus activities will take place Sunday, April 29. One of the highlights of the celebration which is part of a one-year pilot project funded by the Jewish Association of College Youth, will be the appearance of Shlomo Carleback, an internationally renowned folk singer.


More than 35 Bergen County, N.J. Mayors have issued proclamations designating May, 1973 as “Israel’s 25th Anniversary Month” in their municipalities. In addition to special programs planned on the local level, a county-wide observance will mark the achievements since May 7, 1948 of Israel. The proclamations read in part: “Israel has never forgotten that the ideals of justice, freedom and peace which inspired generations of freedom-loving men were first proclaimed by the prophets of ancient Israel. It has constantly sought by act and deed to give these great concepts renewed significance.”

Remembrance Day Sunday, April 29–the program marking the 30th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising–will highlight and initiate the Bergen County observance. Similar programs will take place simultaneously in every Jewish community throughout the U.S.

Other highlights of the nation-wide celebrations include a spectacular multi-media presentation in St. Louis at Powell Symphony Hall, which is the home of the St. Louis Symphony. The program runs from now to May 6.

Celebrations in Iowa will feature a number of guest speakers, luncheons, and films.

The anniversary will be celebrated in quite another way by Zalman and Sonia Deanin, veteran Labor Zionists from New York. Under a special grant from the Deanin Foundation, Inc. 25 Histadrut scholarships will be financed in Israel this year.

“Rebels and Rabbis,” an original comedy drama based on scripts by the late Morton Wishengrad, will be presented by the University of Judaism in Los Angeles as part of its 25th anniversary commemorative program.

Finally, Israel will celebrate her anniversary by issuing its first State medal ever to be struck in platinum.

A new cassette recording, one side of which describes the preparation for the seder in the home and the other the order of the seder with the most popular Passover melodies, has been produced by the National Jewish Welfare Board for use by Jewish chaplains, Jewish military lay leaders, and presidents and program chairmen of military sisterhoods to help Jewish families in the military prepare for Passover. The Federation of Jewish Philanthropies will deliver Passover food packages throughout N.Y.C. by mini-buses, and are preparing community seders for thousands of the city’s Jewish poor and aged. In addition, many of Federation’s hospitals, homes for the aged. child car agencies and recreational centers will provide the traditional seder.

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