Jerusalem, Israel - Dec. 26, 2015 - December in Jerusalem, Israel, was the time for another series of four Hamshushalyaim weekend celebrations. חמשושלים בירושלים Hamshushalayim is a combination of the words hamshush and Yerushalayim. For Israelis who do not have Sundays off from work, the closest thing to a long weekend is Thursday night through Motzei Shabbat, known as hamshush.
Participating Jerusalem restaurants offer special rates on meals, and hotels have special deals on rooms. Plus, there are hundreds of cultural events in multiple locations. The list of impressive Thursday late night free events include the Israel Museum. The Three Days PIANOS annual musical festival at the Jerusalem Theater had two free entrance offers at late hours.
One unique event this year took place at מערת צדקיהו, Zedekiah's Cave, also known as King Solomon's Quarry. Located near Sha'ar Shechem, better known as the Damascus Gate, its entrance is a small opening in the Old City Walls.
On Thursday night, in spite of the security situation, hundreds of Jerusalem residents and visitors walked the long candle-lit path deep into the cave. Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, Minister of Immigrant Absorption MK Ze'ev Elkin,who currently serves as Minister of Jerusalem Affairs, and Jerusalem Development Authority head Eyal Haimovsky gave opening remarks.
Israeli Pianist Gil Shohat and Nurit Galron performed to an enthusiastic and appreciative full-house. The melodies of Chopin reverberating from stone walls with special lighting, underground sounds and sights making for an unforgettable evening.
Consider planning to be here, next year in Jerusalem for Hamshushalayim. What will they think of next?