Wisconsin to do Purim virtually 

 

The silliness of Purim can’t be stopped. Purim, a joyous festival where things get turned upside down, is Feb. 25. 

This year’s themes at local shuls include dogs for “Pawrim(ouch), while at another, “Grease” will be the word. All of the plans we’ve found have been virtual. This is a roundup of a few examples:  

Surprise theme at Beth Hillel Temple 

Impossible? Not for Temple Beth Hillel in Kenosha! Last year, Rabbi Dena Feingold was an impossible burger, yes, she was. The theme was Iron Chef and Office Manager Philipp Butnik was the chief chef of Achashueras palace. 

The chef needed to help Esther (played by the rabbi’s daughter, Abigail Backer) come up with a veggie meal to meet Haman’s dietary needs, with the added challenge that Achashueras was a meat and potatoes kind of guy.    

Rabbi Dena Feingold as an Impossible Burger, with Office Manager Philipp Butnik as the chief chef of Achashueras’ palace, from Purim last year in Kenosha.

“It was the last time we were together as a community in the building,” Feingold said. “Because we never reveal the gag ahead, there is always a great deal of anticipation and huge attendance no matter what night of the week it falls on. Hopefully, Zoom Purim will not be any different! And do I know what the theme is yet?  Nope, still thinking …” 

Little Orphan Esther and ‘Pawrim’ at Congregation Sinai 

“Little Orphan Esther and the Shushan Schemer” is the theme of a virtual Purim Spiel and Megillah reading with Congregation Sinai of Fox Point. Congregation Sinai invites you to “return to yesteryear, when hamentaschen were hamentaschen and podcasts were radio.”  

Also, Itsy Bitsy Sinai, the shul’s program for families with young children, is holding a virtual “Pawrim Celebration.” There will be Paw Patrol spiel, too. Dress in your favorite Purim costume for at-home games. 

Both events are Feb. 25. Contact Jen Friedman at JFriedman@CongregationSinai.com for Zoom information. 

Surprise behind the mask at Congregation Beth Israel Ner Tamid 

Imagine if everyones face were hidden behind a mask! Who ever heard of such a thing? You heard it here first! 

Members of the Congregation Beth Israel Ner Tamid community will mask up and make short home videos playing up their masked identities for Purim.  

The shul also reports that “we take care of one another in this year of physical distance with special attention to the mitzvot of Mishloah Manot (care packages of food) and Mattanot laEvyonim (gifts for those in need). 

The Glendale shul will read the full Megillah as part of evening and morning services on Zoom. 

Grease at Congregation Emanu-El B’ne Jeshurun 

Hey daddy-o, this is will be a spiel thats made in the shade and sure to have members of Congregation Emanu-El Bne Jeshurun burning rubber to get there. 

2021 translation: Hello friend, this spiel will be excellent, and members of the Fox Point synagogue will rush to see it. 

“Grease” will be the theme of the synagogues Purim spiel this year, according to Cantor David Barash. It will be recorded but lively. An artist is drawing cartoon avatars and man-under-the-hood Scott Finch will digitally drop congregant’s singing and acting faces into the cartoons. 

If you need a pandemic distraction, seeing one of your fellow congregant’s signing heads floating around in the body of Haman or Esther has got to be the answer. 

Have you not seen your organization’s plans included in recent coverage? Let us know so we can include you in future efforts – at Chronicle@MilwaukeeJewish.org.