JTA NEWS
24 May 2017 - 28 Iyyar 5777 - כ"ח אייר ה' אלפים תשע"ז
JTA NEWS :
Arts & Culture
Jerusalem International Marathon E-mail

A strong number of tourists from around the world have signed up to participate in the 7th annual Jerusalem International Marathon to be held on 17 March.

Organisers expect a record number of runners from around the world to participate. They will arrive in Israel from over 40 countries, in addition to the thousands of Israelis already signed up to take part. The event will include a Full Marathon, a Half Marathon, a 10km run and a number of shorter family and fun runs.

The marathon is an important event for tourism to the city, with more than an estimated 10,000 extra hotel nights booked around the event. In 2016, nearly 30,000 people participated in the marathon, with 2,600 runners from 65 countries. The marathon began in 2011 with just 10,000 participants.

The men’s record for the full marathon was set in 2014 and is held by Ronald Kimeli Kurgat of Kenya (2:16:09), and the women’s record was set in 2016 and is held by Joan Jepchirchir Kigen of Kenya (2:38:30).

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“Mud Day” comes to Israel E-mail

Several thousand participants from around the world are expected to compete in the famous international obstacle race, “The Mud Day”, which will be held in Israel for the first time on 24 March. It will take place in Tel Aviv.

The Mud Day is an extreme sport event that was created in 2013 and now takes place in four countries. Since it started, more than 200,000 participants (the “Mud Guys”) have participated.
The event requires participants to complete a 13km run with 22 challenging obstacles, including water, crawling under wires, a pool of ice water and lots of mud!

The obstacles are inspired by military obstacle courses. To finish the course successfully, participants must demonstrate strength, endurance, mental capacity and teamwork. More than 80% of the participants in the event are recorded as a team.

The preparations for the race in Hayarkon Park are expected to take two weeks, including work with heavy machinery, using 400 cubic metres of water, sixty tons of straw, a million ice cubes, 1,200 tons of mud, 96 square metres of wooden structures and 80,000 kilometres of white tape runner. In addition, an amateur track will be built covering half the distance, with only 11 obstacles, and children aged 7-12 will be able to run on a special “The Mud Kids” track.

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Hikers discover engravings of seven-branched menorah E-mail

Hikers exploring a water cistern in the Judean foothills during the Chanukah festival in December made a rare and intriguing discovery: on the walls of the cistern, which is hewn in chalk bedrock, were incised ancient engravings of a seven-branched menorah and a cross.

Touring enthusiasts Mickey Barkal, Sefi Givoni and Ido eroz, who are members of the Israel Caving Club, went out to visit hidden caves in the Judean foothills. According to Meroz, “We heard there are interesting caves in the region. We began to peer into them, and that’s how we came to this cave, which is extremely impressive with rockcarved niches and engravings on the wall. Just before we were about to return we suddenly noticed an engraving that at first glance seemed to be a menorah. When we realised this was an ancient depiction of a menorah, we became very excited. Its appearance was quite distinct. We left the cave and reported the discovery to the Israel Antiquities Authority.”

The menorah engraved on the wall of the cave has a base with three feet, and it evidently portrays the menorah that stood in the Temple during the Second Temple period. A cross was engraved near the menorah.

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