This week in Jerusalem
Peggy Cidor's round-up of city affairs.
Runners in Jerusalem Marathon pass Old City Photo: Marc Israel Sellem
Jerusalem marathon is a long-running winner Almost two months before it is
scheduled to take place, the Jerusalem Marathon is becoming a real success
story, and over 800 runners from some 42 countries have already
What particularly warms hearts at Safra Square is that some
of these participants are from countries considered marathon champions, like
Brazil, South Africa and Japan – placing the capital’s marathon in line with
some of the most famous in the world.
The Jerusalem Marathon is
considered one of the hardest to run, because its path follows some of the most
breathtaking parts of the city – both figuratively, since the landscape is
beautiful, and literally, since it involves climbing a lot of hills. Word at the
municipality has it that within the past two years, this marathon has become one
of the most important sporting events in the country and attracts runners from
Europe, Asia, America and Africa – even though it runs through locations beyond
the Green Line. American magazine Women’s Running has chosen the Jerusalem race
as one of the 10 best marathons in the world.
This year’s race is
scheduled for March 1, and the city expects to host about 1,700 runners from
abroad, with some 1,000 at least for the full 42-kilometer marathon. More at
Barkat reaches out to Old City church
leaders Mayor Nir Barkat has launched an extended tour of the churches in the
Old City. Last week, Barkat paid a personal visit to the spiritual leaders of
the various local church communities and wished them all a happy new
The mayor, who is promoting his agenda of turning the slogan “One
reunited city” into a reality, began making the annual visit last year, also
visiting Muslim communities in the city, expressing his belief that he is mayor
of all religious denominations here. The visit to the Christian community
leaders in the Old City has additional importance, considering the repeated
attacks these communities have suffered from yeshiva students in the Jewish
According to an official statement from the mayor’s office, this
year’s visits entailed presenting prospective joint tourism projects to the
Train signals The city has received an original railroad
car from British Mandate days that will be on display at the renovated Old Train
Station in Baka, due to open in the spring. The car, which weighs 35 tons, is 20
meters long and holds 112 seats (on old wooden benches), is back from the
Israeli Railway Museum in Haifa.
The cost of the whole project –
renovating the coach and moving it from Haifa to Jerusalem – was no less than
NIS 700,000, a grant from the developer of the whole project, Avi
The car itself has an impressive pedigree – made in the UK by
the Birmingham Railway Carriage & Wagon Co. for the British Mandate’s
Palestine Railways in 1921-22, it will now become one of the attractions at the
old train compound. Mind the gap!
Take a Universititrip Feeling an urgent need to get away from your desk at
school and see what’s outside? The Rothschild Ambassadors Foundation has a
suggestion: Take the Universititrip and check what other academic institutions
have to offer by way of graduate programs.
Bachelor’s degree students
tend not to get too much information about what is available in terms of further
education, the people at the foundation have discovered. The Universititrip, as
its name indicates, takes students to meet representatives and hear more about
what kind of further studies are available, and where – including the
requirements for all the institutions and how to prepare for them. The first of
these trips sets out next Thursday for academic institutions in the Tel Aviv
region, soon to be followed by other groups and schools.
aims to help students become society’s next leaders, through higher education
and awareness of the country’s needs.
A musical package from home A gala
concert to benefit lone combat soldiers and provide care for the severely
wounded will take place at the Henry Crown Auditorium of the Jerusalem Theater
on January 17 at 8 p.m.
“Attendance at the concert for A Package from
Home will be an expression of support, love and esteem for our soldiers and will
enable us to continue to send packages to the lone soldiers [soldiers without
family in Israel] and provide respite care for the wounded,” say organizers
Anita Kamien (pianist and conductor) and her husband, pianist Roger Kamien, who
will be performing with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra.
marks the nonprofit organization’s 13th anniversary.
Silverman recalls how during the recent Pillar of Defense operation, she
received a call informing her that there was an urgent need for supplies for the
lone soldiers who were preparing to enter Gaza from the southern
They required fleece jackets, socks, long underwear, towels,
toiletries, candy and other comfort items. The response to her request for funds
exceeded her best expectations, and A Package from Home delivered 2,000 packages
in the following days.
Since its inception during the intifada in 2000,
the NGO has sent more than 180,000 packages to lone soldiers.
to benefit A Package from Home presents a program of works by Mendelssohn and
Brahms. Purchase of tickets will enable the organization to continue sending
necessities to lone soldiers and provide respite care for the wounded. Tickets
range from NIS 100 to NIS 250.
To order tickets, call 1-700-70-4000 on
Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 1-4 p.m. or e-mail
firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets are available from the Jerusalem Symphony Box
Office has the tickets and not the Jerusalem Theatre Box Office.
(and more expensive) pastures The Jerusalem Park, which stretches from the north
to the south of the city, is nearing completion. This week, the Jerusalem
Development Authority, which is in charge of this project, approved adding NIS
40 million to the whole plan’s existing budget for 2013. This is an important
development, since while the general project has been approved – and its cost is
shared among the city, the JDA and the government – each of its annual budget
items requires approval to ensure that the work is not halted for financial
The park, which will be the largest in the city, spans some
15,000 acres, and the plans for it include several “green fingers” that go
inside the neighborhoods on the seam between constructed areas and nature, as
well as 42 km. of bicycle paths and several leisure and sports
Local weather patriotism Now that winter has come to
Jerusalem in force, residents can keep track of it via the city’s local weather
station. Accessible on the web at www.02ws.com/station.php?&lang, the
Jerusalem Weather Forecast Station includes sounds of the rain hitting your
windows and the wind howling.