Children and Jewish unity were at the heart of Manchester’s Israel at 60 celebrations, which saw a 1,200-strong crowd fill the Sheridan Suite in the north-west of the city last Thursday.
For the kids, there was indoor ice skating, giant inflatable assault courses and interactive stalls, with around 150 volunteers from community organisations and youth movements helping them to get the most from their day. For the rest, Israeli band Kol Chai and singer Danny Bergson played Israeli and Jewish music throughout the evening and there were separate dancing areas for men and women.
Daliah Bean from Whitefield was among satisfied customers, telling the JC: “My kids are loving it. It’s an extension to our Pesach holiday we’ve just spent in Israel.”
Cheadle doctor Jonathan Tuck said: “There’s a nice atmosphere and the event is good for solidarity.”
Originally from Israel and mother of five-year-old twins Adi and Shani, Liat Karni was one of a large contingent from South Manchester. “Being away from Israel, I’m really pleased there is a celebration like this here,” she said.
The party was funded by community organisations under the umbrella of the Central Zionist Council, whose president, David Berkley, was delighted at the turnout. “Families are enjoying themselves and all sections of the community are flying the flag. Zionism is alive and well in Manchester.”
Organising committee chair Lucille Cohen said it had been important to cater for children.