Children sing at a 2014 Yom HaAtzmaut event in Palo Alto. (Photo/Saul Bromberger)
Children sing at a 2014 Yom HaAtzmaut event in Palo Alto. (Photo/Saul Bromberger)

Where to celebrate Israel at 75 around the Bay Area

This month, Jews across the world will celebrate the 75th anniversary of Israel’s independence. Two major events are planned in the Bay Area to mark Yom HaAtzmaut, a one-day holiday that begins the evening of April 25.

The JCCs of the East Bay, Foster City, Palo Alto, San Francisco, San Rafael and Silicon Valley have come together to present the Israel@75: A Bay Area Community Festival from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sunday, April 30, at the San Mateo County Event Center. Tickets cost $30 for adults and $8 for children.

The day will feature a performance by Israeli musician Avraham Tal, an Israeli fashion show, a beer garden, a bouncy house for kids and food trucks with cuisine from around the world. A craft fair will sell goods from Israeli artists and creators. Two photography exhibits celebrating Israel will be on display, “Let Me Show You Tel Aviv” by Tal Goldstein and “We Hereby Declare” by a group of artists. Attendees can also contribute to a collaborative paper block sculpture celebrating Israel’s 75th.

The S.F.-based Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund is a major sponsor of the event, as are several foundations. Other event sponsors and partners include the Israeli Consulate in San Francisco, three dozen Jewish congregations, schools and organizations and a dozen businesses.

The Contra Costa JCC will host an East Bay Yom HaAtzmaut celebration dubbed IsraFest75 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, April 30, at Stone Valley Middle School in Alamo. Admission is free.

The event will feature a shuk with Israeli food and souvenirs, Israeli folk dancing classes, Israeli short films, lectures and food trucks. Live music will include Israeli singer Noa Levy, as well as the Rossmoor Community Choir, the Cantors’ Ensembles and Rabbi Larry Milder. Kids and teens can visit a replica Bedouin tent for mint tea and a poetry reading, attend a mezuzah-making workshop and play matkot, a popular Israeli beach sport similar to paddleball.

Event co-sponsors include more than a dozen Jewish congregations, schools and groups. The Israeli Consulate in San Francisco and the Jewish Agency for Israel are community partners for the event.