Within Purim celebration that Migdal JCC of Odessa (with its programs, such as Beitenu Center for Children at Risk and Mazel Tov Early Childhood Center) organized or was involved in, there was an array of activities, which attracted ages from several months (Mazel Tov babies and toddlers) up to middle and senior age.
Late night Purim on March 20 gathered some 200 JCC members under the roof of the Center. Special decorations were made in advance for the occasion to be placed on the improvised stage, ceiling, hall, etc. The costumes that the performers were wearing had also been done by the participants of community programs.
After traditional Megilat Esther everyone congregated in the hall to participate in and watch the “Circus Show” – such was the theme and form of the Purim celebration in the JCC this year. The name was true as the performances were rather typical of a circus show: there was a “dancer on bowl”, an air gymnast, clowns, Harlequin, fireworks, as well as performing animals – all of these regular JCC members that, simultaneously, were playing the roles of Haman, Ahashverosh, Esther, etc.
The two-hour main performance turned into a night family-style celebration that said good-bye to the last celebrants at 4 o’clock in the morning. Only about 6 hours were left before the next staging – Migdal performance at the community-wide celebration in the specially rented premises of the Odessa City Circus.
The Community Circus celebration involved almost every Jewish organization of the city including the JCC, Israeli Cultural Center, JAFI, children and parents from the orthodox Jewish communities - Tikva-Or Sameach and Shomrei Shabbos (Habbad), kids and teens from Mazel Tov Early Childhood Center and Beitenu Center for Children at Risk. The program that lasted more than 2 hours finished with special holiday refreshments and noise made by the Purim ra-hashan.
Purim marathon for Mazel Tov kids was not over and continued with their concert on March 23. Puppet shows (in one of which there were special puppets – babies and toddlers), drama group performances, singing and dancing got the highest appraisal on the part of the audience and capped off the long but joyful holiday celebration.