3rd Annual Jewish CultureFest: Music, Food, Art and Fun!
Tuesday, March 10, 2020

With live music, specialty foods, games and mitzvah projects, the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center of Houston (the J) presents a fun-filled and educational afternoon at its 3rd Annual Jewish CultureFest, held this year on Sunday, April 5 from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. at Evelyn’s Park at 4400 Bellaire Boulevard.

The event showcases the diversity of Jewish culture and complements Houston’s long-standing festivals celebrating Greek, Polish, Italian and other heritages. This year’s event features an impressive lineup of both local and internationally acclaimed Jewish musicians, engaging family activities, and delicious food from local vendors. The festival is free and open to the public.

“We’re so excited for the community to experience Jewish CultureFest this year,” said Festival Co-Chair Debra Dluhy. “It will be a fun day celebrating Jewish culture that includes experiences and activities for all ages.”

The event’s main stage will feature three hours of live music, with Texas-born country musician Joe Buchanan kicking off the festival at 1:00 p.m. Buchanan will perform his “Americana with a Jewish soul.” At 1:45 p.m., Beth Yeshurun Day School Choir takes the stage, followed by Houstonian Danny Gavin’s alternative and acoustic rock band Mikol Makon at 2:00 p.m. At 3:00 p.m. the JCC Teen Theatre performs the song “Mermaid Outta Me” from their upcoming production of Peter and the Starcatcher. Animal Farm Band will then take the stage at 3:15 p.m. The band, a group of musician-educators, blend music—drawing from rock, jazz, folk, Klezmer, Afro-pop, Latin, and Tin Pan Alley—with comedy and audience participation. Their original songs have been played on family and children radio programs across the country. Following their performance, the musicians will hold an instrument petting zoo in the early childhood tent. Closing out the festival, Jaffa Road performs at 4:00 p.m. The award-winning Toronto-based music group fuses Jewish, jazz, Indian and Arabic music with dub and electronica. The festival will be emceed by Houston-based EZ Bar Mitzvahs.

The day’s community service projects will include making Passover Seder centerpieces and blankets for residents at Seven Acres, the only Jewish nursing facility serving the Texas Gulf Coast. Festivalgoers will also be able to help decorate lunch bags for local non-profit Kids Meals Inc., which delivers healthy meals to Houston’s hungriest preschool-aged children.

“Engaging in these important service projects while having a fun-filled day in the park is a great way for both the Jewish and non-Jewish community to come together and participate in tzedek, or social justice in the Jewish tradition,” said Festival Co-Chair Jason Dluhy.

Family events include a Mishpacha and Me/PJ Library Story time at 2:45 p.m. and a Find the Afikomen Scavenger Hunt, which will be ongoing throughout the day. Family friendly and teen games of Matkot (Israeli Beach Paddle Ball) will also be held during the festival. Families will have the chance to learn more about local Jewish camps as well.  J Camps, Camp Young Judaea and Greene Family Camp will host a camp tent with a tie dye station, a s’mores-making activity, and an Israeli favorite, the gaga pit.

The day’s food selections will include Falacos Food Truck, Kenny & Ziggy’s New York Delicatessen, Café at the J/Laykie’s Gourmet and Kona Ice.  Jewish artists will be on site selling their wares, including the Jewish Family Services’ Celebration Company,  Kat’s Lip Creations, Custom Cape Shop and Sadie’s Slime.

Jewish CultureFest is supported by The Jewish Federation of Greater Houston, United Way, Greater Houston Orthodontics, JHV, PJ Library, Greene Family Camp and Camp Young Judaea.  For more information on Jewish CultureFest, please visit Discover other J programs and services at Find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.


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