30,000 Visit Hebron for 2015 Succot Festival

Archaeological excavation site in Tel Hebron opened for the first time. Special guest Lipa Schmeltzer performs.

15.10.15, 10:46
Tens of thousands visited Hebron over Succot 2015 from all over the world. People gathered for prayer, tours and concerts at Ma'arat HaMachpela and throughout the Jewish community. The new archaeological excavation site in Tel Hebron was opened to visitors for the first time. Featured were discoveries from the Second Temple era. Two large and impressive ritual baths, preserved in excellent condition, were revealed to the public. The dig was carried out in 2014 by the Civil Administration, the Israel Antiquities Authority and the Jewish Community of Hebron.

The traditional Hebron concert took place before a crowd of tens of thousands: the main artists that performed in Hebron were Yishai Ribo, Yishai Lapidot, Yuval Tayeb, and American Chassidic superstar Lipa Schmelzer, who came especially from abroad.
The "Kinderlach" ensemble in its current line-up appeared for their last time, as four members are leaving the band. An official farewell ceremony was held in Hebron for those leaving after years of appearances in Hebron. Additional performers took the stage and stirred the audience: Yair Shiryon, Ido Portal, Roley Dickman and the David Ichilvitz Orchestra.

Tours to various sites in the Jewish community were led by community guides and Midreshet Hebron. Holiday prayers were held at Maarat HaMachpela in the presence of Chief Rabbi of Safed, Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu and featuring cantor Hezki Sofer. Special activities for children featured crafting stations and other attractions.

The Commander of the Judea and Samaria Division, Brigadier General Lior Carmeli visited the newly upgraded museum in Beit Hadassah. He noted his deep admiration for the large Jewish presence in the city. Carmeli said that Hebron is a special place that continues to surprise and attract large crowds. He stated that their mission is to secure these events in light of the turbulent reality in Israel and to ensure that visitors can go to Hebron safely.

The director general of the Jewish Community of Hebron Uri Karzen said that the Succot events are the culmination of all the events of the past two months. "We began with two slichot events, including an all-women's event, Rosh Hashanah and then to Yom Kippur which has become the “Uman of Israel. We are now gearing up for Shabbat Chayei Sara, hoping to host 10,000 visitors," he stated.

Noam Arnon, Hebron’s spokesman said, "almost a million people come to Hebron every year - not only because of the numerous concerts and events, but primarily because of the love and the connection between the ancestral fathers and mothers, and their sons and daughters."

Hillel Horowitz, Director of the Hebron Heritage Foundation, who also heads the “To Touch Eternity” Visitor's Center in Beit Hadassah, blessed the visitors of Hebron, and said that the many supporters of Hebron are a display of strength. "They expresses their support of Hebron with their feet," he said. "These visitors give us the strength to continue achieving our goals, which will, God willing, increase more and more."

Ashi Horowitz, Hebron’s Events Director and Shirel Bleicher concluded the day with great satisfaction and thanked all the security forces who worked to ensure the event is organized and convenient to the masses of visitors. 
To visit Hebron:
United States contact info:
1760 Ocean Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11230

In Israel contact the offices of the Jewish Community of Hebron at:

Sukkot 2015 in Hebron | 199 Images
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