By Rabbi Meir Geisinsky – Chabad of the Five Towns
As a child growing up in the 1980s (Mems), I have several special memories looking up to and admiring the older bochurim as they selflessly and arduously prepared for the grand Lag BaOmer parade with our dear Rebbe.
Crown Heights was very alive the Motzoei Shabbos before those Sunday parades. There were bochurim all over Kingston Avenue and Eastern Parkway building, painting and organizing till at least 5:00 in the morning. (Which is when I recall going to sleep one year) – I haven’t seen or been part of that enthusiasm and activity for far too long.
This past week, leading up to Lag BaOmer, I once again relived that feeling as a group of bochurim came nightly and volunteered their own time and energy to help our Chabad of Five Towns have a unique Mitzvah Float Walk-through Experience.
The float required much planning, purchasing, running around, arranging and implementing, but it was well worth the effort and time.
The exciting float included crawling through a pair of Tefilin, taking a candy from the Kosher supermarket and climbing up a Mezuzah.
Participants continued on by walking through a huge Tzedaka box where they each put a coin in the box, put their face into the Shabbos candles sticks and posed for a photo. Then they walked into a house full of Seforim and exited through the Mikvah.
On Lag BaOmer morning, the float went to schools where a total of 300 children were addressed by Five Towns Shliach Rabbi Zalman Wolowik about the importance of the day and how the Rebbe instituted parades.
The children then had the chance to experience the float. Later in the day, the float was brought to the grand carnival at the park where over 2,000 children enjoyed the unique opportunity.
Special thanks and recognition goes to the organizers Boruch Ceitlin, Mendy Druin, Eli Eckstein, Mendel Engel, Shneur Marasow, Levi Maskel, Adam Razla and Benny Yerushalmi – a very impressive group of talented determined bochurim.
A real blast from the past. Chazak.