The 17th Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow just concluded and has lived up to the promise of being one of the most exciting Jewish festivals around the globe.
This year there were a few new stars taking center stage, most notably the famous Jewish singer/actor, Theodore Bikel.
Chazan Benzion Miller gave a rousing performance in the town of Bobowa, home of the Bobover Chassidim.
On Shabbat the kosher Eden Hotel, in the heart of Krakow’s Jewish Quarter, played host to more than 50 people, with delicious traditional food, like gefilte fish and cholent. The hotel was also host to a post-festival banquet that lasted till 3 o’clock in the morning.
The most famous feature of the festival was the music, but there were also many classes in Jewish subjects. There was kosher cooking, Jewish song/dance, paper cutting, art motifs, Hebrew/Yiddish and many other topics.
Festival Director, Janusz Makuch, deserves a Yashar Koach for the monumental job he did in transforming the streets of Krakow into a scene of Jewish pride and culture.
Rabbi Michael Schudrich and Rabbi Gluck making Havdalah for thousands at The Festival on live Polish TV.
Chazan Benzion Miller performing during the final concert in front of the Old Synagogue in Krakow.
Theodore Bikel on stage at the festival.
Janusz Makuch, backstage, at the festival.
Some of the 20,000 people in front of the festival stage.
Children learning to incorporate Jewish designs in their artwork.
Foundation Stone Set For Museum of Jewish History In Poland
It has been almost 15 years since the conception of the idea for a museum of 1,000 years of Jewish history in Poland, but the dream took a great jump forward last week, with a gathering of museum supporters from around the world.
Representing Poland, the Polish President, Lech Kaczynski, called for a reconciliation between Jews and Poles, suggesting the museum be used as a catalyst in forging new ties.
David Peleg, the Israeli Ambassador to Poland, reads a letter from Israel President-Elect Shimon Perez, a long time friend and honorary officer of the project.
Rabbi Lau of Tel Aviv, a Holocaust survivor, born in Poland, spoke passionately and eloquently of how the museum will be a place where Jews and Poles will have the opportunity to learn that the history of the Jews in Poland was more then just the five years of the Shoah. The Jews were an integral part of Polish society, involved in the arts, economics, and even politics.
Rabbi Michael Schudrich of Poland with Rabbi Lau of Israel at the Foundation Stone Ceremony.
Dignitaries line up to sign Scroll of Honor. Included in the group are Marion Turski, President Lech Kacynski, Jerzy Halbersztadt, Sigmund Rolat and Tad Taube.
President Lech Kacynski and Jerzy Halbersztadt on the way to bury the Scroll of Honor in the foundation.
Some of the hundreds of people that braved the pouring rain to attend the Placing of the Foundation Stone.
Shmuel Ben Eliezer signing the Scroll of Honor.
Sigmund Rolat of N.Y. receiving a certificate in recognition of his strong support of the Museum.
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