Jerusalem Winter Noise Festival

By Samantha Hulkower

If you were out in Nachlaot last Monday night (February 3), you might have noticed more activity than usual around Betzalel and Schatz streets. If you had ventured into the scene you would have discovered the first of a month long event in Jerusalem called 'Shaon Horef'' also known as the 'Winter Noise Festival' (scroll down for English). In case you were wondering whether it's worth it to venture out on these cold Jerusalem nights - 3,000 people turned out for the first night.

In total, there are over 60 different events spread out over the 4 Mondays, most of them free. Here are some of the highlights:

February 10 will be centered around Rechov Hillel - there will be a motivational talk on how to get the most out of life, free advice for improving your clothing style, and a history of the tasty microbrew Shapiro Beer. For the more adventurous, there is a free 'hair sculpting' studio, for those looking to rock a wild new 'do. Just make sure you decide before you have a few of those beers. Also found on Rechov Hillel is the Italian Jewish Museum. There are many fun, free events going on, including tours and jazz music.

February 17 will be down on Rechov Aza in the heart of Rechavia. This is a night for the senses, especially the palate. Wine tasting will be happening at Cafe Paris. Learn urban agriculture to grow yourself some organic fruits and veggies. And there are plenty of opportunities to tempt your ears - a whole tent will be set up just for indie bands and there will be cabaret going on in cafes along the street.

Last but not least, the 24th will be on the main road in Ein Karem. Not the most obvious choice for an event geared towards 'young people' (the events are organized by the Center for Youth in the City Hall). Ein Kerem is a quieter community, mostly filled with families, primarily known for being the location of the famous Hadassa hospital and the starting point for a number of lovely hikes into the Jerusalem Forest.  There are a number of poetry readings going on, for those with a more literary side. These include thoughts on Hasidism, the famous poem by King Solomon 'Shir HaShirim, and a 'musical journey into the soul of Shabbat'. For those not interested in the spoken word, there will be a chocolate making seminar and an authentic Kurdish grandma giving cooking lessons.

This is but a sampling. Head over to the app store on your local smartphone to download an app with more details and directions to all the festivities. Mor information in Hebrew can be found here.

Samantha Hulkower is an Olah Chadasha, living in Jerusalem. She enjoys trying to speak Hebrew, finding the humor in every situation (especially dating), and is looking forward to the day she can successfully argue b'Ivrit. You can also view her blogs Curls of Wisdom on life in Israel, and ToBuildAndToKeep on environmental issues in Israel. 

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