KaleidoFest to celebrate Israel at 60


Kaleidoscope Israel, the St. Louis Jewish community’s year-long celebration of “the ever-changing spectrum of Israel at 60, will present KaleidoFest, a festival dedicated to the enjoyment and appreciation of Israeli culture, science, food, entertainment and art,” according to an announcement by Kaleidoscope Israel co-chairs, Diane and Paul Gallant, their children Steve and Amy Gallant and grandsons Richie and Tommy Gallant, along with Rabbi Brad Horwitz, director of the Helene Mirowitz Department of Jewish Community Life at the Jewish Community Center, which is organizing and hosting the events from May 3-8 on the Millstone Campus. Sue Lesser is the lay chair of KaleidoFest.

“KaleidoFest is a major component of our year-long efforts to focus on the many aspects of the State of Israel, its people, its culture and its accomplishments,” said Diane Gallant. “We are very grateful to Rabbi Brad Horwitz and Sue Lesser for their hard work and creativity which will assure the success of this exciting series of events.”

Advertisement for the J

Rabbi Horwitz added, “There will be something exciting for all ages and all segments of our community at KaleidoFest. Participants will be able to shop at the one-of-a-kind Israeli Artists Bazaar, featuring world renowned Israeli and Jewish vendors. In addition, they can visit a replica of the Shrine of the Book and see a facsimile of the Dead Sea Scrolls up close — one of only four outside Israel.”

Sue Lesser said, “Those taking part in the wide-ranging activities at KaleidoFest will be able to interact with an exhibit focusing on Israel’s contributions to science and technology and they can enjoy the delicious, authentic food at the kosher Middle Eastern grill. They will also be able to directly advocate for Israel with Missouri Senator Kit Bond.

“We hope to see a large turnout at the Jewish Community Center celebrating Independence Day with the outstanding Israeli entertainer Pini Cohen, or participating in the myriad of other special programs and activities throughout the festival. There is truly something for everyone at KaleidoFest. Come and celebrate Israel at 60!”

Kaleidoscope Israel is generously funded by the Lubin-Green Foundation, a supporting foundation of the Jewish Federation of St. Louis. KaleidoFest has been made possible through the generosity of Michael and Carol Staenberg, in conjunction with the Staenberg Family Foundation.

According to Lesser and Rabbi Horwitz, highlights of the KaleidoFest festival include:

Saturday, May 3: Opening Preview Party. “Here is your first opportunity to see everything KaleidoFest has to offer,” Lesser said. “You can be among the first to shop at the spectacular Artists Bazaar and meet the talented artists and/or their representatives selling their artwork, jewelry, clothing, Judaica and more. Together we will celebrate the end of Shabbat with a special Havdalah ceremony featuring the magnificent voice of Rabbi Seth Warner of Congregation Shaare Emeth.” The evening’s reception party will feature exquisite kosher dairy desserts prepared by Steven Becker Fine Dining catering and kosher wine. Early reservations are required by April 25. Contact Randi Poscover, 314-442-3235.

Sunday, May 4: “United States and Israel Relationship at 60,” a program in which Senator Christopher “Kit” Bond will speak. There will be a light breakfast at 9 a.m. followed by Sen. Bond’s remarks. Program and breakfast are free but reservations are required by April 25. The event is sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council and the JCC. Contact Randi Poscover, 314-442-3235.

Sunday, May 4: Yom Ha’atzmaut-Festive Teen Celebration from 5 p.m.-8:30 p.m. “Gather all of your friends for a festive teen celebration of Yom Ha’atzmaut,” said Richie and Tommy Gallant, Kaleidoscope Israel Teen co-chairs. “This Israeli style afternoon will include a falafel eating contest, sports, activities, BBQ picnic and much more. The day will culminate in a special performance by renowned Jewish comedian Joel Chasnoff, whose style has entertained teen audiences across the country.”

Sponsors include I-Tag and the Kaleidoscope Israel Teen Committee, with committee representation from BBYO, Israeli House, JSU, NCSY, NFTY and USY. “We also thank CAJE for coordinating this event,” Lesser said.

Monday, May 5: Middle Eastern Grill, a kosher buffet from 5 p.m.-7:15p.m. will be prepared by Simon Kohn’s and Pratzels featuring schwarma, falafel, Israeli salads, hummus, pita, chicken nuggets and more. Kids activities will be included. Adults are $14 and children 12 and under are $8. Reservations are required by April 25. Contact Randi Poscover at 314-442-3235.

Tuesday, May 6: Women of Impact: Female Contributions to the State of Israel, planned and co-sponsored by Nishmah: The St. Louis Jewish Women’s Project and St. Louis Chapter of Hadassah. Join other women from noon – 1:30 p.m. for an inspirational lunch and learn exploring a sampling of women who have impacted and are currently making their own imprint on Israeli society. $10 registration includes lunch catered by Reservations. Reservations are required by April 25. Contact Randi Poscover at 314-442-3235.

To get a complete list of programs, to register, or for more information contact KaleidoFest coordinator Randi Poscover at 314-442-3235 or [email protected] or go online to www.jccstl.com.

Additional scheduled events for KaleidoFest taking place May 6-8 will be covered in the next issue of the St. Louis Jewish Light.