August is Festival Time in Jerusalem, so get ready to take to the streets! This month, we've got at list of some of the best festivals and public entertainment for you, what's new in Jerusalem and lots of new, exciting stuff going on at our website.

The Jerusalem Insider’s Guide Newsletter: Contents for Issue #3

  • Jerusalem Festivals
  • Staying Fit in Jerusalem
  • Archaeologists make an exciting discovery
  • Jerusalem Tidbits on the Web
  • What's New on the Jerusalem Insider's Guide website

August is Festival Month in Jerusalem!

Hutzot Hayotzer – The Jerusalem International Arts and Crafts Fair

This is the eagerly anticipated heavy-hitter of Jerusalem festivals. Artists from all over the world converge on Solomon’s Pool at the foot of the Old City walls for a 10-day exhibit and celebration of the arts. Visual artists, dancers, and craftsmen exhibit their wares, dancers perform, popular restaurants have their booths there too, and an impressive line up of Israeli pop stars performs every night in the open air. The international pavilion boasts booths manned by representatives of a variety of different countries, showing their traditional arts. Learn to blow glass, pet a camel or simply browse.

The festival is open in the evening. Concerts begin at 21:30. Entrance fee. If you have a Yerushalmi card, you get a discount. August 3 to 15

The Israel Wine Festival runs from August 4-6 in the Billy Rose Art Garden of the Israel Museum. Evenings between 19:00-24:00. Learn about Israel’s many vineyards and sample some of our best wines while strolling among Henry Moore and Picasso sculptures. Sounds like a perfect evening out.

Close to a dozen international puppeteer troupes will be participating in The International Festival of Puppet Theater, which will be holding shows at five different venues around the city from August 9 to 14, with special performances for children. Most of the shows are without words, so language shouldn’t be a problem, and some are in English with simultaneous Hebrew translation. . For program offerings and more details, visit The Train Theater website.

Summer Nights

Nights are alive even without the festivals. If you’re wandering around Liberty Bell Park on Tuesday nights around 8:30 pm, you can catch a variety of open-air Jazz performances, and local artists will be performing in the area of Ben Shetach St and Kikar Safra plaza on Friday afternoons.

Traveling with kids and need to keep them busy on Thursday evening or Friday before the Sabbath? Stroll over to the new Alrov-Mamilla mall, where jugglers, artists, and puppeteers will be performing from 18:00-23:00 on Thurs. nights and 12:00 to 14:00 on Friday afternoons throughout August.

And if you’re at the mall anyway, why not catch the sound and light show at the Tower of David? It’s on every night Mon-Thurs, and Saturday night, at 20:00 and 21:00, with additional show at 23:00 on Wed. and Thurs. Call 626-5333 for prices and tickets.

New in Jerusalem

Public fitness equipment is being set up in parks around town by the Jerusalem Sports Authority. You can already find them in Malcha, Katamon and Sacher park, along with marked walking paths. So don’t leave your exercise routine at home when you come visit – just head out for the parks.

Last week, archaeologists unveiled the latest in a recent string of amazing finds – a complete Aramaic inscription dating from Second Temple times. Few inscriptions remain from that time period, so this an exciting find. The text is extremely well preserved, although scholars say it may take six months or more before we know what it says.

What’s New This Month at the Jerusalem Insider’s Guide website

We’ve been busy trying to provide ever more useful information for you on the site. Just a few of the new topics we’ve added recently:

And last but certainly not least, we’re very excited about the opening of our Jerusalem Ahava Store, which features one of the most extensive collections of Ahava Dead Sea Mineral beauty products online. Have a bit of the Holy Land delivered straight to your door!

Jerusalem and Israel on the Web

Have iPhone, will pray. Use your iPhone to send a prayer straight to the Western Wall in Jerusalem. Prayers will be printed and inserted between the stones of the Western Wall – or Kotel, in Hebrew – within 48 hours. If you live in Israel, of course, you don’t need an iPhone – you can send an SMS to the Wall. Just dial 1818, and the Western Wall Rabbinate will print out your prayer and put it in the Wall.

Jerusalem made the grade on Travel and Leisure’s World’s Best Cities List for 2009 - landing the #3 spot on the Top Ten African & Middle Eastern Cities and making the Top Twenty World’s Cities.

Think Jerusalemites feel alone? Think again – 50 Million US Christians Back Israel.

Israel is the crossing point not just of cultures but of migrating wildlife, too. World’s Birdlife in Danger if Israeli Sanctuary Closes.

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