03-05-2021 CBN News Jerusalem Julie Stahl
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JERUSALEM, Israel – Tens of thousands of Israelis recently shared a unique touring experience designed to get Israelis collectively out of their homes in a safe environment after a year of COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions.
“After a year of not having any events, the city was empty – no tourists, no parties, no events, no light, no food. So, what are we gonna do?” asked Jessica Cohen, International Media Manager for ItravelJerusalem. ItravelJerusalem is part of the Jerusalem Development Authority, funded by the Jerusalem Municipality and other government institutions.
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The innovative exhibits showcase various sites in the city – from the outside only. At the Israel Museum, for instance, the Scroll of the Book, which contains the Dead Sea Scrolls of the Bible, was lit up on the outside with verses from the scrolls.
Visitors wound their way through the parking lot in their cars looking at giant screens that showcased ancient Hagadas (the Passover story) and sculptures from the museum.
On a hill in the distance, the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, was lit with up in blue.
On the other side of town, the distant view of the city was lit with a colorful laser-light show. The Tower of David and the Old City Walls had changing scenes.
And at Jerusalem’s First Station (literally the first train station in the city, now a trendy restaurant and marketplace) the parking lot was full of parked cars in which the occupants listened to a DJ on their radios while watching a light show.
“We’re here in the First Station in Jerusalem and we have one of the biggest parties [since the] corona [virus began]. Why? Because everyone’s in their car. You come here. You tune [into] 106 and you have the most amazing DJ that’s playing the most amazing Israeli music,” explained Cohen, who said this was her favorite part of all the lights.
Cohen said it’s just like an “outdoor festival” but it’s “corona safe.”
Nearby some of the participants stood just outside their cars dancing or children stood on the roofs of their parents’ cars.
“This is very cool! It’s very fun!” said a mom sitting in her car.
“I very love this!” said her little girl sitting on the roof.
“It’s really magical and really beautiful because here you have the new Jerusalem together with the Old Jerusalem, the history, and [King] David and that’s what is Jerusalem today,” said Cohen. “It’s a mix, a combination between the historic and the modern.”
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