The launching of a brand new road to Gush Etzion bringing te eastern part of the region within 10 minutes of the capital is cause enough for the residents to celebrate. But the official reason for their Hol Hamoed Succot happening is the 40th anniversary of the beginning of the resettlement of the region, 19 years after the settlements were destroyed and their defenders massacred in 1948. Idan Reichal headlines the main event, which takes place at the settlement of Nokdim on the slopes of te Herodian on Sunday evening beginning at 17, with a free concert of his popular, prize-winning "The Memaamakim Project." If you get there earlier in the day, take in the magnificent ruins of the castle fortress built there by King Herod, whose underground waterways were used some 5 years later as tunnels by Second Temple-period Jewish rebels against Rome. A kite festival takes flight on Monday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Gush. And on Tuesday, a non-traditional, mixed religious-secular Hoshana Rabba all-night learning and music event runs from dusk to dawn in the mixed observant-secular settlement of Tekoa, culminating with an archaeological excavation led by Heriodian expert, Prof. Ehud Netzer, who recently discovered the monarch's grave there. Visit or call (02) 993-7999

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