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April 11, 2014

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PAGE IOA HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, APRIL 11, 2014 Immigrants to Israel don't regret dropping extra Passover seder Nati Shohat/Flash 90 A family seen during the Passover seder on the first night of the holiday in Tzur Hadas- sah, Israel, on March 25, 2013. Diaspora Jews observe two seders each year, as opposed to one seder per year in Israel. But why do Diaspora Jews mutter to themselves while they're dragging out the matzo balls for their return engagement at seder No. 2? Why, since the Torah is crystal clear that Passover is to last seven days, do Diaspora Jews have to tack on the eighth day, and the second seder? And why don't Israelis need to do that? For the answer, one has to look up--to the moon--be- cause the Jewish calendar is By Deborah Fineblum a lunaraffair. In the old days, witnesses needed to testify that they saw the new moon, thereby fixing the date that each month began (since the months could be either 29 or 30 days long). Conse- quently, without that expert testimony, those far removed from Jerusalem would not be informed when the month began--hence the timing of the holidays in the Diaspora. Since there is a day on each side of possible error, the ancient Jewish sages wisely tacked on an extra day to the Rather than feeling a sense of loss, leaving the second Passover seder behind in the U.S., or France, or Turkey, or any other country of origin is touted as a perk of living in Israel that new immigrants to the Jewish state (olim) men- tion in the same breath as the universal availability of fresh pita and falafel. r 5a, ZMX. Custom Print Marketing Invitations & Announcements Digital & Offset Printing Brochures & Booklets Direct Mail Services Forms 8- Letterheads Envelopes 407-767=7110 Bu=ne,ds 205 Norda Street Lon#vcd, FL 32750  vwwv,  " -'- Mention This Ad and Receive 18% Discount _ HANDYMAN SERVICE Handy man and General Maintenance Air Conditioning Electrical Plumbing Carpentry Formerly handled maintenance at JCC References available STEVE'S SERVICES Call Steve Doyle at (386) 668-8960 festivals, as one of the first two days was bound to be right. In Israel, of course, no such precaution was necessary. Thanks to those witnesses, they knew the right day. Although communications are vastly improved since the days of the Sanhedtin (the Jewish supreme court in Jerusalem), the custom in Diaspora communities of cel- ebrating an extra day of Pass- over, and other festivals such as Sukkot, has remained in force. (Note: Rosh Hashanah is the one exception, as the Jewish New Year is celebrated everywhere for two days). The 30 years since Gary ("Gary the Guide") Kamen made aliyah from Chicago have, if only in this one re- spect, been nothing short of bliss. "Did I miss the second seder? Not for an instant," grins Kamen, whom caught up with outside Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem's Old City, where he was rounding up his tour group. Growing up with divorced parents, itwas always the first seder with Dad and his family and the second seder with Mom and hers. Or vice versa. Now it's one seder for family and friends alike, and then a dive directly into chol hamoed--the intermediate days of the holiday. Here in Israel, that's a full five days (not four as in the Diaspora), during a time of year when olive blossoms burst into bloom and the air and lakes warm up appreciably. "You know what a mechayah ("pleasure" in Yiddish) is? That first Pesach here was a mechayah!" added Ka- men's fellow tour guide Allan Younger, in a distinctly Scot- tish brogue. Even 20-plus years later, the memories are still fresh. "I can remember what it was like for the first time not having to start all over again and drag out the leftovers like we had to back in Scotland," he adds. "The truth is, day-old tsimmis (an Ashkenazi stew made from carrots, dried fruit, vegetables, and meat) does not taste good." Baila Brown says she too will never forget her first seder as an Israeli citizen. She had made aliyah from Massa- chusetts and had just moved into her new apartment in Jerusalem. Waiting for her son to return so they could begin their seder, she stood in her courtyard listening to the children in the adjoining apartments singing the Four Questions. "It was such an amazing sound. I knew at that moment that I had arrived," she says. As for the second seder, Browfi says that, as much as she was accustomed to it in the States, "It's as if we don't need it here.., the one we do have is such a power- ful telling of the story right here in the part of the world where it all happened." And as those neighborhood children chanting the four questions illustrated, the seder "is a communal and shared experi- ence here in a way it can't be there," she explains. - "And here you can really ex- perience Passover as a'spring holiday, something you don't feel in New England where it's still cold at that time of the year," Brown says. New York native and co- author of "Doublelife - One Family, Two Faiths and a Journey of Hope," Harold Berman also remembers the first Passover after he and his family arrived in Efrat five years ago. "The word that kept coming to mind was 'natural,'" he recalls. "It seemed so natural to tell the story just once. Once you have experienced it, it stays with you. After all, in America, we never had Thanksgiving dinner two nights in row?' By the way, visitors to Israel, unless they own property there, still need to keep the second day of the holiday even when the Israelis around them are throwing the bathing suits into the car and heading off for their vacations. Yes, that means the visitors need to hold a second seder, complete with seder plate, four cups of wine, and the reading of the Haggadah with as much respect and focus as the night before. Maybe, after singing "Chad Gadya" and draining the fourth cup of wine at that second seder, these visitors will want to amend the tradi- tional seder-ending promise of "Next year in Jerusalem" by adding "...this time as an Israeli citizen." Aviv vodka from Israel introduced at Miami Beach fundraiser for Israeli soldiers MIAMI--AVIV613 Vodka, a new vodka from Israel, and the only certified kosher vodka in the luxury category, was a part of the celebration at the Friends of the Israeli Defense Force (FIDF) Annual White Party Fundraiser on April 5 in Miami. "We are thrilled to be in- volved with the FIDF White Party and introduce South Florida to AVIV 613," said Marc Grossfield, founder and chief executive officer of Tzfat Spirits of Israel. "It's only appropriate to celebrate the defense forces who keep Israel safe with something that comes directly from the Holy Land." The perfect combination of seven spiritual ingredients that make up AVIV 613's recipe is what gives it a totally unique flavor: wheat, barley, olives, figs, dates, grapes, and pomegranates. The water used to create AVIV is also special--it comes from the Sea of Galilee in Israel. "It's the lowest freshwater lake in the world and that contributes to AVIV's exceptional smooth- ness," added Grossfield. AVIV's hidden spiritual at- tributes continue throughout the design of its bottle as the glass is made using sand from the Negev Desert in southern Israel. So in other words, each bottle is, literally, a piece of Israel. The words "celebrate life" are inscribed on the bottle's surface in all the major languages of the world along with more than 100 spiritu- ally charged messages and symbols. AVIV 613 Vodka improves the taste of every vodka drink and enhances drinks made with fruits and sweet mixes. ."Vodka connoisseurs love it neat, straight up or on the rocks," said Grossfield. "It is a physical reminder that there is always someone or something in our lives to celebrate." Ten percent of the profits are pledged to ethics programs at universities and other Marc Grossfield, founder Tzfat Spirits of Israel. ethics programs around the world. AVIV is produced and bottled in Israel and imported by Tzfat Spirits of Israel, LLC, Minneapolis, MN. For more information, please visit:, and for the most up-to-date news and Leslie Parker and chief executive officer of events, follow www.facebook. com/AvivVodka. For more information, please visit Aviv 613's website and go to where-to-buy/for details on how to purchase.