Schoolchildren do ‘Passover cleaning’ at Kinneret

City Notes: Weekly wrap-up of local news.

Sunset at the kinneret  370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Ammar Awad)
Sunset at the kinneret 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Ammar Awad)
As many adults around the country were frantically koshering their homes for the Passover holiday, pupils from the Ramat Korazim elementary school undertook their own pre-Passover project – cleaning and maintaining the Lake Kinneret trail in anticipation of the tens of thousands of tourists and day trippers expected to visit the area over the holiday.
Under the banner “Going for clean – it’s our Kinneret,” the fourth-graders planted trees, cleared debris and built stone benches along the trail in the area of Khirbat Aish in the northern Kinneret. In the coming weeks, the children will also prune the plants that have grown along the trail since the lake has risen, and they express hope that visitors to the area will also do their bit to look after the Kinneret and its beaches.
The project is led by the Kinneret Trail branch of the Kinneret Cities Association as part of a wider revolution to clean up the lake and its beaches and make it accessible to the public. The effort was launched in cooperation with the Kinneret Drainage Authority, the Environmental Protection Ministry and the Israel Government Tourist Corporation.
Half a kilo of heroin and an M16 seized in Yirka
Police seized half a kilogram of heroin and an M16 rifle in the Druse town of Yirka northeast of Acre on Sunday and arrested three residents in their 20s on suspicion of importing and dealing drugs.
Along with the drugs and rifle, police found near their homes a large quantity of ammunition and a substance suspected to be cannabis. An investigation is under way.
Driver caught speeding at 196 km/hour
Officers from the Carmel branch of the National Traffic Police caught a 35-year-old Tel Aviv resident speeding at 196 kilometers per hour along Highway 6 on the weekend, the Local website reported. Police arrested the driver after a traffic police officer took him in for a hearing. He was later released on bail.
TA city councilman joins battle to save the coast
Tel Aviv city councilman Reuven Ladiansky has joined the environmental battle to save Tel Aviv’s coast. This month Ladiansky, who is head of the green movement Let Live, has been collecting signatures from Tel Aviv residents to petition against planned construction on the city’s beaches. Ladiansky slammed the plans as a “project that wastes NIS 150 million on the destruction of a valuable natural resource." “The municipality’s bulldozers began destroying the Frishman and Gordon beaches as part of a megalomanic project that will leave us, the residents of the city, without our beautiful natural beaches,” he continued, explaining that the petition will be submitted to Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai, calling on him stop the works.
According to the petition, the Frishman and Gordon beaches are already packed with bulldozers that will, in a matter of weeks, “transform this little piece of nature into another promenade, more wooden steps, and more small businesses will collapse under the burden of heavy taxes.”
The document accuses the municipality of undertaking the project “under wraps… completely ignoring its obligation of transparency and involvement of the public.”
“And don’t think this won’t cost us because it will cost us, and it will cost us a lot: NIS 150 million,” Ladiansky warned Tel Aviv taxpayers. He also stressed that the grandstands would cause irreversible ecological damage as a result of the loss of sand, which he said will lead the sea to spread out increasingly, flooding the coastline, which will eventually disappear.
He urged Tel Aviv residents and concerned citizens to join the petition, rather than “remaining silent while they steal from us under our noses the right to enjoy natural beaches free of charge.”
By the beginning of the week, the campaign had managed to garner 197 signatures, 4 percent of the target number.
Man stabbed, seriously wounded in Tel Aviv
A man was stabbed and seriously wounded on Haim Bar-Lev Street in Tel Aviv on Sunday. Medics from the volunteer organization Israel Rescue and Hatzala treated him on the scene before taking him to the hospital. Ze’evi Teper, a medic who volunteers for the organization, said that the man was stabbed several times in the head and upper body. Police were investigating the incident.
Motorcyclist killed in collision on Route 4
A 30-year-old motorcyclist collided with a truck and was killed on Route 4 near the Mesubim junction on Sunday. After attempting to revive him, MDA paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.
Police nab man for flashing eight-year-old girls Police arrested a man on suspicion of performing indecent acts in front of two eight-year-old girls in Petah Tikva over the weekend. The girls told police that the man had followed them and then flashed them. The girls managed to run away and reported the incident to the police. The suspect was questioned and arrested, and his detention was extended by two days.
700 schoolchildren take to the dance floor in Eilat
After having refined their singing skills over the past five years, the children of Eilat have added dance to their repertoire, which they put into practice for the second time at an annual event in the city last week. The children danced folk dances with Mayor and Director of Education Meir Yitzhak Halevi; Miri Kopito, who heads the project; school principals; teachers and parents. A team of dancers from Israeli Dance – which has been involved in the initiative from the outset – also participated in the event, under the direction of dance instructor and choreographer Gadi Biton.
The Education Department launched the initiative with the mayor’s support and the collaboration of Biton and prominent Israeli folk dance instructors. At the end of the first year of the program, the young dancers took part in a nationwide event called Camp Motion, which Biton heads every year in Eilat. This year, the Education Department widened the dance circles and introduce folk dancing into the school curriculum. The dances the children learned during the year were performed at the annual event, held in cooperation with all the schools.
“The strong desire underlying the initiative is to expand the values of Israeli heritage for the children of Eilat. This is the fifth year that children in Eilat have sung in public… and this year 3,500 children sang, and kindergarten children sang, too, said Kopito.
Echoing Kopito’s sentiment, Mayor Halevi stressed the importance of Eilat’s children growing up according to the Israeli way of life and learning to love the Hebrew songs that past generations grew up with.
BGU awards top honors to three Business for Peace projects
Three projects received top honors at Ben-Gurion University’s year-long Business for Peace Competition last week. The contest, launched by BGU’s Guilford Glazer Faculty of Business and Management, invited contestants to develop innovative ideas to bridge the gap between Israelis and Palestinians and provide financial benefit to both sides.
The contest was supported by philanthropist Guilford Glazer of Los Angeles, who encourages people-to-people encounters as a way to build coexistence in the region.
“I had the privilege to be there when Guilford Glazer first raised the idea. He used to say that a poor and miserable neighbor is a bad neighbor,” BGU president Prof. Rivka Carmi said at the ceremony. “Israel has to invest in its neighbors.
There were some wonderful ideas raised by this competition.
Some will have to wait to be implemented, but for some, including the winners, it is possible to get to work tomorrow morning.”
The first prize went to iPAL Outsourcing to Palestine, which constitutes an online system for employment and job outsourcing between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. The website would have Israeli and Palestinian members who post technological services, job openings and/or projects.
The second prize was awarded to Project Wealth – Promoting Local Sustainable Economic Development, which aims to increase the involvement of women in the workforce by providing tools in product development, marketing and financing.
Work Combinations, Ltd. came in third with a program to create an online database that would allow business owners to coordinate with Palestinian workers.
Wishing the winners success, head of the judges committee, MK and former BGU president Prof. Avishay Braverman, remarked, “We need people willing to make a decision to advance peace, who are willing to pay the price.”