Kiryat Arba, located adjacent to Hevron in Judea, held its Purim carnival on Friday ahead of the holiday that starts there next Wednesday night, and featured an unusual treat for participants – the world's largest grogger, a traditional holiday noisemaker.
All of the Kiryat Arba educational institutions as well as residents of the town took part in the festivities, and students from all the schools dressed up in Purim costumes.
As part of the special preparations this year, students used the carpentry shop that has been active in the Talmud Torah Hevron school for the last few years to make a special surprise. At the workshops, students generally build closets, lecterns and other furniture.
This year they stumbled upon the idea of building what they claim is the largest grogger in the world. The noisemaker is traditionally used to drown out the name of Haman, the descendant of Amalek who tried to destroy the Jewish people nearly 2,500 years ago in the Persian Empire as retold in the Purim story.
The length of the grogger head is 2.10 meters (nearly 7 feet) while its handle stands at 2 meters. Unfortunately no team from the Guinness Book of Records was present, as they certainly missed out on an amazing entry – and an amazing Purim celebration.
"In these days when the whole country and Kiryat Arba in particular are encircled by severe terror attacks we must raise the flag of faith, security and good deeds, and at the same time we pray to God to destroy the seed of Amalek from under the heavens," said Rabbi Baruch Maimon, director of the Talmud Torah school.
Kiryat Arba regional council head Malakhi Levinger, who took a central part in the event, spoke to Arutz Sheva about the Purim celebrations.
"I was happy to see that precisely in these days thousands of students and educational staff held a communal celebration in the different neighborhoods with the senior citizens," said Levinger.
"These are the great powers that reside in our people, from the days of Mordechai the Jew up to our very days."
The event was organized by the educational department together with the educational institutions, the city's community center and mission-based seed.