Thousands of Shalach Monos and Hamantaschen were distributed with Purim celebrations and Megillah Readings around Washington, DC, sponsored by American Friends of Lubavitch (Chabad).
Celebrating this great day of Jewish joy with fellow Jews, five “teams” of rabbis fanned out across the capital to be sure everyone who wished got a chance to celebrate Purim.
Activities were held at the White House, The US Capitol, campuses of George Washington University and the American University (AU), the Embassy of Israel, at the ADL Leadership Summit, AIPAC HQ, hospitals, and other locations around the capital.
An invitation from the White House to the Purim Celebration there stated: “We’ll be joined by Rabbi Levi Shemtov of the American Friends of Chabad (Lubavitch). Since we work too hard to get out of the building much, Rabbi Shemtov has a long tradition of bringing celebration of the Jewish holidays to the 18 Acres!”
“Attendees had the chance to think about the meaning of Purim and how the lessons of the Book of Esther can apply in our lives today, reported the White House Jewish liaison Matt Nosanchuk, following the Megillah reading in the Diplomatic Reception Room in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.
On Wednesday night, hundreds of people turned out for the DC PURIM FIESTA at The Shul (Chabad). In addition to multiple Megillah readings, there were delicious tacos, empanadas, strolling Mariachis, a Margarita Bar, photo booth, amazing prizes in the grand raffle and shalach manos available to the Congressional and Administration staffers, diplomats, community members, young professionals and students who turned out for this amazing event. A special Purim program was presented by Mrs. Nechama Shemtov, Director of Education and Women’s Issues for AFL.
A special exhibit of rare Purim Judaica was made available by the Max N. Berry Judaica Collection, one of the most comprehensive and prestigious collections of Judaica in the US. Megillahs from different regions, some hundreds of years old, were available for perusal, and some were even still in usable condition and read from.
Rabbi Mendy Ulman, Program Coordinator for AFL, worked to organize the “Purim Fiesta” and other activities with support from a large delegation of bochurim from the Rabbinical College of America in New Jersey and the Central Tomchei Tmimim Yeshiva 770 and Chovevei Torah in Brooklyn, NY.
The day concluded with a major seudah and farbrengen at American U, led by AU Shluchim Rabbi Shua and Esti Hecht.