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Community Trip to Israel

The Jewish Federation of the Berkshires, in partnership with the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts, is offering a community trip to Israel to celebrate Israel's 65th birthday.

Scheduled to take place from April 15-24, 2013, the trip will include two days of touring in Tel Aviv, four days of exploring Jerusalem including Shabbat, visits to Jaffa, Masada, the Dead Sea, the Ein Gedi region, the Golan Heights, the Afula/Gilboa region as well as Tsfat and much more.  The trip will include visits to neighborhoods where Jews and Arabs reside as well as a briefing on and observation of Jerusalem's security issues.  A detailed itinerary can be found at www.jfwmtravel.org which outlines the arrangements for meals, group activities, and optional activities with links to points of interest for those seeking more information about the sites to be visited.

The trip is suitable for both first-time and returning visitors.

Pricing (land only, double occupancy) includes two options:  $2500 per person for luxury 4 star accommodations or $3000 per person for luxury 5 star accommodations in each locale.  Participants need to arrange their own travel to and from Israel.  The Jewish Federation of the Berkshires is available to assist in this effort if there are persons interested in traveling as a group.  The majority of meals are included in the price.

Subsidies are available, on a first-come, first-served basis from the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Western Massachusetts.  HGF grants to individuals are administered on a reimbursement basis.  Individuals can apply for up to $1000 if they have not yet received HGF Israel subsidy funds in the last three years.  The JEF will make available $1000 subsidies for first timers and $500 for return visitors.

The application, itinerary, informaton regarding travel insurance and travel tips are available on the community trip website, www.jfwmtravel.org.  Application forms are also available at the Federation office, 196 South Street, PIttsfield.  A deposit of $500 is required to reserve a spot.  The remainder of the payment is due in March.

For more information, contact Arlene D. Schiff, Executive Director, Jewish Federation of the Berkshires, at 413-442-4360, ext. 12 or arlene.schiff@jewishberkshires.org