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Press Release – 22 October 2007

First time ever tour to Israel for 60th Yom Ha’atzmaut celebrations

For the first time ever, the State Zionist Council of Victoria is planning a celebratory tour of Israel to coincide with the massive Yom Ha’atzmaut festivities for Israel’s 60th year, leading our community to be part of this special milestone.

From May 6 to 18, 2008, participants will travel the length and breadth of Israel experiencing an unforgettable tour, discovering contemporary Israel and sharing the excitement of this most special Yom Ha’atzmaut with the people of Israel.

The tour will showcase Israel at 60, with many unique inclusions and features. The tour will include active experiences, exclusive encounters with Israel’s leadership and unique site visits.

In planning the tour, a special emphasis on Australian community projects in Israel is being developed. To this end, tour organiser and SZC Executive Director, Ginette Searle, together with her co-planner Eitan Drori, Executive Director at the Friends of Hebrew University’s Victorian Division have been working closely with SZC affiliate organisations to choose some of the most interesting projects in Israel the community is involved in.

The tour will be open for all, particularly targeting active and interested Zionists via the SZCV’s 51 affiliate organizations. Individuals, groups and families will be catered for. The cost will be maintained at a minimum. We are working to bring the program to participants for no more than $2,008USD (ground costs) per adult, including all accommodation, food, guides, transport and entrance fees to sites and attractions for 13 days.

Upon arrival on May 6 participants will attend Erev Yom Hazikaron commemorations and then the following evening enjoy Yom Ha’atzmaut festivities as Israel ushers in her 60th anniversary. Thursday May 8 will be a day of major celebration including meeting with a high profile Jerusalem official; a traditional barbeque lunch with entertainment and a major event in the evening, to be confirmed.

The program will further feature opportunities to meet and engage with outstanding Israeli personalities and high profile, high calibre guest speakers; visits to sites of interest, particularly relating to the establishment of the State of Israel (eg Palmach Museum, Ammunition Hill, Atlit); visits to the new Yad Vashem with expert guides; participation in an archaeological dig and experiencing Israeli art and culture – music, sport, fashion and the arts.

The trip will be organized in partnership with FBI Travel and their partner tour companies in Israel. This will ensure the most professional level of service by experienced tour operators.

To hear more about the exciting 60th Yom Ha’atzmaut Celebration Tour, an information session will be held on Wednesday November 7 at 8pm, in the Auditorium at Beth Weizmann, 306 Hawthorn Road, Caulfield South.

To register your interest or for more information, please contact the State Zionist Council on 9272-5544 or email