PurimPress release from Congregation B’nai Israel

It’s been called “the most enjoyable of all Jewish holidays” — and this March, Congregation B’nai Israel in Rumson is inviting all family, friends and neighbors to “put on a costume or mask, grab a noisemaker, and head to CBI to join in the Purim fun. ”

A festival recorded in the biblical book of Esther, Purim commemorates the deliverance of the Jewish people living in the ancient Persian Empire from a plot by Haman, an evil ruler, to destroy them.

On Saturday evening, March 15 at 7:30 pm, Rabbi Jeff Sultar and Cantor Dov Goldberg will be leading a full Purim Service and Megillah Reading. Rabbi Sultar explained, “everyone is welcome to come to this service…and being Purim, it will feature costumes and silliness but it will not specifically be a family service.”

On Sunday morning, March 16, the synagogue will host “family friendly” Purim events. At 9 am, there will be a “Purimpalooza,” during which time kids and their parents or grandparents will have a chance to fulfill three of the four Mitzvot of Purim — including giving tzedakah to those in need, giving gifts of food to family and friends and partaking in a festive meal.

At 10 am, there will be a “Despicable Purim Family Service,” inspired by the movie Despicable Me and featuring two “minions” on the bimah. This “kid-friendly” service will include an abbreviated reading of the Megillah, and a costume parade.

Then, from 11 am to 2 pm, the synagogue Youth Department will be hosting CBI’s Annual Purim Carnival, which will include carnival games, inflatable “jumpys” (one for preschoolers and one for older children), LEGO Bricks4Kids, new sports games, face painting, and a gift auction.

Tickets for games, inflatable rides and the gift auction can be purchased at the door. The money raised from the gift auction will be donated to a charity selected by CBI’s Youth Department. As always, there will be hamantaschen, popcorn, cotton candy, sno-cones, goldfish and other fun prizes.  Everyone’s favorite magician, Ross Bernstein, “the Magic Man,” will be performing.

All the Purim events are free and open to the public, but advance registration is required for the 9 am and 10 am activities on March 16. Please register online or contact Synagogue Director Emilie Kovit-Meyer, at (732)842-1800 x203.