WUPJ - Reform Judaism in Israel:
An Insider Perspective
Led by Prof. Paul Liptz and Rabbi Steve Burnstein
May 19 - 27, 2016

Tour Rates & Dates:

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Upgraded room categories may be available to book later in the booking process.
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Tour Overview:

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Join us as we meet Israel's Progressive communities and explore the many projects they have undertaken. Encounter ancient and modern history, and discover cutting edge Israeli innovation, all while bonding with WUPJ friends old and new! We invite you to then join the IMPJ Biennial Convention (May 27-29).

Early Bird Special!
Register by February 15, 2016,
and save $100 per person

First Time WUPJ Tour Travelers - Save $100 regardless of when you register! *
(*Note: Discounts (early bird & first timers) cannot be combined)

To download the PDF flyer/registration form, click HERE

About your tour leader: Professor Paul Liptz is a social historian who lectures in the Dept. of Middle Eastern History at Tel Aviv U., & in Israel Studies at Hebrew Union College. Prof. Liptz has traveled throughout Europe with numerous groups and is recognized as an outstanding Scholar in Residence, capable of translating complex issues and realities into language we can all understand.

About your tour leader: Rabbi Steve Burnstein has been working in Jewish and Israel education for over 30 years. He currently serves as Director of the Anita Saltz International Education Center of the World Union for Progressive Judaism which provides intensive educational programs in Israel and around the world, empowering communities and participants to strengthen connections to Israel and world Jewry.

This Unforgettable Experience Includes:

*  Hearing high level updates from the Progressive movement's top leadership, including the IMPJ's Rabbi Gilad Kariv, WUPJ President Rabbi Daniel Freelander, and many more

* Spending the day exploring the cutting edge of social action & equality in Israel with Anat Hoffman of Women of the Wall and the Israel Religious Action Center

*  Peering behind the scenes of Israeli innovation - from recycling tech at Hiriya, to vision-based driver assistance innovator Mobileye and beyond

*  Exploring the challenges of integration and boundaries, including a geo-political Jerusalem tour with Colonel (Res). Miri Eisen

5 nights Dan Panorama, Jerusalem, Israel
2 nights Dan Panorama, Tel Aviv, Israel
Breakfast daily, 3 dinners & Shabbat lunch
Transfers included if arriving/departing with the main group
Entrance fees as per itinerary

These prices do not include:

Roundtrip airfare & departure taxes and fuel surcharges
(listed separately)
Any border taxes or visas
Tips to guides, driver, and dining room waiters
($15.00 per person, per day-pre-collected)
Any items of a personal nature
Travel Insurance
(Highly recommended)

Return to Main WUPJ Tour Page

Tour Itinerary:

Thursday, May 19, 2016: DEPARTURE

• Depart the United States for our overnight flight to Israel

Friday, May 20, 2016: ARRIVAL

• Afternoon arrival at Ben Gurion Airport, with assistance by Ayelet representative.
• Check into our hotel.
• Shehechianu Ceremony and welcome to Israel at Beit Shmuel-Mercaz Shimson, international headquarters of the WUPJ, overlooking the dramatic walls of Jerusalem's Old City.
• We enjoy Shabbat dinner together this evening at Beit Shmuel, where we enjoy an orientation session and meeting with Rabbi Gilad Kariv of the IMPJ to hear about the unique struggles of Liberal Judaism in today's Israel.

O/N Jerusalem

Saturday, May 21, 2016: SHABBAT SHALOM!

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• This morning, we join Shabbat service with a local IMPJ community.
• Shabbat lunch and meeting with Hila Lahar to hear about the Yachdav School Twinning Program, connecting North American Hebrew schools with Israeli schools to explore shared Jewish concepts.
• Free time this afternoon to relax.
• Seudah Shlishit with WUPJ President, Rabbi Danny Freelander, including a WUPJ update.
• Havdalah this evening, as Jerusalem returns to life.
• Evening free for dinner on own as Jerusalem returns to life.

O/N Jerusalem

Sunday, May 22, 2016: IRAC PROGRAM

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• Begin our day with Anat Hoffman, of Women of the Wall and the Israel Religious Action center, for an update on the many societal battles being fought in Israel now to define the type of nation it will be into the future.
• We enjoy a special private tour of the Supreme Court, led by an IRAC attorney, including a meeting with Israel Supreme Court Justice, Elyakim Rubinstein, including a chance to meet with Rabbi Noa Sattath, Director of IRAC.
• Lunch on own
• This afternoon, we participate in the Freedom Riders Program; volunteers will ride the buses that are known within Israel to be segregated by gender. “Freedom Riders” sit in the front of the bus, demonstrating through action, their disapproval of this segregation.
• Afternoon geopolitical bus tour of Jerusalem with Colonel (Res.) Miri Eisen, a former International Media Advisor to the Prime Minister of Israel and a former Israeli government spokesperson.
• Dinner (on own) this evening.

O/N Jerusalem


• Breakfast at our hotel.
• We begin with a visit to Hiriya/Park Ariel Sharon. Why start here? Hirya is the perfect example of what is happening in Israel today. As Israel matures as a country, it has innovated solutions to problems it only recently discovered it had. In this case - what do we do with all this trash? The answers will surprise you as we visit the recycling station, enjoy the view to nearby Tel Aviv, and celebrate Israel's talent for turning lemons into lemonade.
• Meet with staff at the Bet Eden Special Needs Facility for a special Kabbalat Shabbat program coordinated through Kehilat YOZMA from Modiin.
• Enjoy a walk through the market place of Ramle, led by David Leichman. We'll explore the ethnic foods of the many different immigrant populations that make this city among Israel's most colorful. We'll have time for lunch on own in the market.
• This afternoon, we visit the Ramle Open House Arab/Jewish Center, partners with IMPJ Kehilat Birkat Shalom from Kibbutz Gezer. OPEN HOUSE Center in Ramle was founded in 1991 to further peace and coexistence among Israeli Arabs and Jews in this mixed city of 75,000 residents, 22% of which are Arabs. It has two inter-related goals: to provide educational and social opportunities to Arab children and their families through their Center for the Development of the Arab Child; and to be a place of encounter and cooperation between Jews and Arabs in the Ramle-Lod area through their Center for Jewish-Arab Coexistence.
• We'll then continue to Gezer, to the home town of Rabbi Miri Gold & her husband David Leichman. Rabbi Gold was the focus of a recent landmark Israeli Supreme Court case, becoming the first female rabbi recognized as clergy by the State of Israel. We'll hear their story as we enjoy their warm hospitality.
• Return to Jerusalem.

O/N Jerusalem

Tuesday, May 24, 2016: IMPJ PROGRAM

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• Today we tour the exciting new excavations, recently opened as part of the Southern wall tunnels.
• Continue to Keren B'Kavod, a program that helps prepare food packages for needy families.
• Lunch on own.
• Visit to Mobileye a high tech technology company that develops state of the art vision-based advanced driver assistance systems, providing warnings for collision prevention.
• Meet with Rabbi Nir Barkin to discuss DOMIM-aLike, an Israel-Diaspora relations project. The program aims to strengthen Israel's significance among Diaspora progressive communities while developing and deepening Diaspora Jewry's relationships with Israel.
• Continue to the renewed Israel Museum celebrating its 50th anniversary, and having recently completed a $100 Million renovation. The museum is world class in every way, and we have the option to stay for the evening on own.

O/N Jerusalem

Wednesday, May 25, 2016: EXPLORING ISRAEL

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• Check out of our rooms.
• Shaharit Service at the "Ezrat Israel "
• Day trip to the north or to the south - details TBD.
• Arrive in Tel Aviv for check-in and a free evening.

O/N Tel Aviv

Thursday, May 26, 2016: IMPJ PROGRAM

• Breakfast at our hotel.
• Bus tour of southern Tel Aviv to witness firsthand the city within a city - the refugees and migrants from North Africa that have sparked a fierce national conversation about Israeli identity.
• We meet with Attorney Nicole Maor, Director of IRAC's Legal Aid Center for Olim for a discussion about immigration and refugees.
• We visit with participants in the IMPJ's Mechina program offering young Israelis the opportunity to intensively study their Jewish heritage and Israeli identity for a year between high school and military service.
• Lunch (on own) along the beautiful Rothschild Boulevard
• Here in the city center, we visit the Space for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. This Library provides a shared-working space and hub facilities for teams dedicated to developing internet startups and technology companies. In addition, The Library offers networking events, meet-ups, and professional infrastructure for young entrepreneurial visionaries. We will tour the sight and meet with some of these entrepreneurs.
• Visit the IMPJ Daniel Center Campus, including a siyyum.
• After free time in Jaffa, we join together for a festive farewell dinner

O/N Tel Aviv


• Breakfast at our hotel.
• This morning, we transfer to the airport for our flight home, landing tomorrow OR return on own to Jerusalem to join the IMPJ conference, beginning today!


*Itinerary subject to change