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Israel Museum

The Israel Museum is the largest cultural institution in the State of Israel and is ranked among the world’s leading art and archaeology museums. Founded in 1965, the Museum houses encyclopedic collections, including works dating from prehistory to the present day, in its Archaeology, Fine Arts, and Jewish Art and Life Wings, and features the most extensive holdings of biblical and Holy Land archaeology in the world. In nearly seventy years, thanks to a legacy of gifts and generous support from its circle of patrons worldwide, the Museum has built a far-ranging collection of nearly 500,000 objects, representing the full scope of world material culture. In November 2017, Prof. Ido Bruno took up his role as Director of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem. To Prof. Bruno's Welcome Address In the summer of 2010, the Israel Museum completed the most comprehensive upgrade of its 20-acre campus in its history, featuring new galleries, entrance facilities, and public spaces. The three-year expansion and renewal project was designed to enhance visitor experience of the Museum’s collections, architecture, and surrounding landscape, complementing its original design by Alfred Mansfeld and Dora Gad. Led by James Carpenter Design Associates of New York and Efrat-Kowalsky Architects of Tel Aviv, the project also included the complete renewal and reconfiguration of the Museum’s Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Archaeology Wing, Edmond and Lily Safra Fine Arts Wing, and Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Wing for Jewish Art and Life. Among the highlights of the Museum’s original campus is the Shrine of the Book, designed by Armand Bartos and Frederick Kiesler, which houses the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest biblical manuscripts in the world, as well as rare early medieval biblical manuscripts. Adjacent to the Shrine is the Model of Jerusalem in the Second Temple Period, which reconstructs the topography and architectural character of the city as it was prior to its destruction by the Romans in 66 CE, and provides historical context to the Shrine’s presentation of the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Museum’s celebrated Billy Rose Art Garden, designed for the original campus by Japanese-American sculptor Isamu Noguchi, is counted among the finest outdoor sculpture settings of the 20th century. An Oriental landscape combined with an ancient Jerusalem hillside, the garden serves as the backdrop for the Israel Museum’s display of the evolution of the modern western sculptural tradition. On view are works by modern masters including Jacques Lipchitz, Henry Moore, Claes Oldenburg, Pablo Picasso, Auguste Rodin, and David Smith, together with more recent site-specific commissions by such artists as Magdalena Abakanowicz, Mark Dion, James Turrell, and Micha Ullman. The Ruth Youth Wing for Art Education, unique in its size and scope of activities, presents a wide range of programming to more than 100,000 schoolchildren each year, and features exhibition galleries, art studios, classrooms, a library of illustrated children’s books, and a recycling room. Special programs foster intercultural understanding between Arab and Jewish students and reach out to the wide spectrum of Israel’s communities. In addition to the extensive programming offered on its main campus, the Israel Museum also operates two off-site locations: the Rockefeller Archaeological Museum, an architectural gem built in 1938 for the display of archaeology from ancient Israel; and Ticho House, which offers an ongoing program of exhibitions by younger Israeli artists in a historic house and garden setting.


Dizengoff Fountain

The "Fire and Water Fountain", commonly referred to as "Dizengoff Square Fountain", is a Tel Avivian landmark in the center of Dizengoff Square. Dedicated in 1986, the fountain is a kinetic sculpture and the work of the Israeli artist, Yaacov Agam. Agam developed this fountain over a period of ten years and it is one of his most renowned creations. He has gained international recognition as one of the founders of the kinetic art movement. The fountain consists of an illusory and a movement dimension. These are both typically works of Kinetic and Op art, which is achieved by the use of technology and the observer's movement. The fountain is composed of several big jagged wheels, which were designed in the kinetic style (colored geometric shapes, which are perceived as different images from different angles). A technological mechanism is automatically activated at different times of the day and the night, turning the wheels on their hinges, injecting water upwards in various forms, spitting fire upwards, while playing music. Throughout the years the fountain drew a lot of criticism from the Tel Aviv residents for the high cost of its ongoing maintenance. Until recently, the fountain was poorly maintained and occasionally stopped operating. However, the fountain was recently repainted and is a large social landmark known by all Tel Avivians. Photo Attributions: Ted Eytan, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons Ori lubin, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons Rubinstein Felix,, CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

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World Jewish Travel
World Jewish Travel Official August 9, 2021

Your Ultimate Israeli Festival Guide for August 2021

For those of you located in Israel August is the month of the Israeli festival.  There are several events being held around the country dedicated to Israeli and Jewish culture including music, beer, films, art. If you are looking for an Israeli summer of fun and variety look no further than World Jewish Travel’s guide below. This list was personally organized by a Jerusalem local. The Felicja Blumental International and Israeli Music Festival The good times start in Tel Aviv at the Felicja Blumental International Music Festival. This festival has been taking place at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art since 1999 and features a 5-day long musical program of classical, jazz, and ethnic music. This year, the event will take place from August 3rd to August 7th so you have plenty of time to fit it into your plan while exploring the city. [caption id="attachment_27638" align="alignnone" width="640"] Let There Be Laughter exhibition at the Museum of the Jewish People in Tel Aviv[/caption] A History of Jewish Comedians Tel Aviv is known for its beautiful beaches and colorful culture. The city has some of the most highly-reviewed museums in the country with temporary exhibitions that you don’t want to miss. The newly renovated Museum of the Jewish People has a new exhibit, Let There Be Laughter.  It looks at the origins of Jewish humor and the contributions of Jewish comedians to the history of comedy. The Eretz Israel Museum is another highly rated museum with exhibitions of local nature, glass artifacts, and pottery. If you find yourself needing a break from the August heat, these museums are worth adding to your Israeli festival itinerary. [caption id="attachment_27639" align="alignnone" width="1000"] Hutzot Fair in the Old City of Jerusalem - Credit: https://www.itraveljerusalem.com/evt/hutzot-hayotzer-intl-arts-and-crafts-fair/[/caption] Sunset in the Jewish Quarter From Tel Aviv, head over to the Holy City of Jerusalem just in time for Shabbat. You’ll want to make sure to stop at the Machane Yehuda market to see the pre-Shabbat hustle and bustle. Taste the fresh halva, nuts, tahini and knafe from the local shops. There are also several restaurants located in or nearby the market where you can grab a bite to eat. Once Shabbat has started, take a walk to the Old City’s Jewish Quarter. you’ll find a peaceful atmosphere that you don’t usually get with all of the tourists who visit during the week. Don’t forget that public transportation doesn’t run on Shabbat, so you may want to find a hotel near the old city.    Hutzot Hayotzer: The Potters Section After a relaxing weekend, you will be ready for the international arts and crafts festival, the Hutzot Hayotzer Fair.  The festivities begin on August 9th in one of Jerusalem’s most iconic locations, the Sultan’s Pool, an ancient water basin located in the valley of Hinnom on the west side of Mount Zion.  Wrapped in the pines of Jerusalem underneath a sky of stars, visitors can view a variety of handmade goods and art from hammocks to paintings. This is also a spot to catch some of the hottest rock and pop stars in the Israeli music industry. You can also catch dance performances and scheduled workshops.     [caption id="attachment_27640" align="alignnone" width="600"] Band playing at the annual Safed Klezmier Festival - Credit: https://www.secrettelaviv.com/tickets/safed-klezmer-festival-2016[/caption] Klezmer, Kabbalah, and Israeli Art From the Jerusalem Central Bus Station you can hop on a bus to the mystical birthplace of Kabbalah, Safed. Here the 34th annual Safed Klezmer Festival invites patrons to experience three nights of Klezmer performances starting on August 17th. Don't miss dozens of Israeli and international bands.  During the festival, performances are held throughout the alleyways of the Jewish Quarter and Artist’s Quarter at 9:00 and going until midnight. During the day we recommend attending the festival's numerous workshops and activities. There is glass blowing, ceramics, tours of the city, or visit the artisans selling their art.  If you need a bite to eat during the festival, be sure to check out our recommended restaurants, and visit Safed’s other must-see sites.  [caption id="attachment_27641" align="alignnone" width="770"] Jerusalem International Film Festival - Credit: https://www.itraveljerusalem.com/evt/international-film-festival/[/caption] The Jerusalem Film Festival After you’ve had your fill of Klezmer, make your way back to the Holy City just in time for the 38th Jerusalem Film Festival on August 24th.  This festival screens a number of Israeli cinematic masterpieces. Additionally, it features films by internationally acclaimed directors and actors with past contributors including Wong Kar Wai, Tsai Ming-Liang, John Sayles, Jim Jarmusch, Stephen Frears, Spike Lee, Quentin Tarantino, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Jane Fonda, and Robert Dinero; the star-studded list is endless. The opening event will also be held in the Sultan’s Pool. The remaining screenings take place around the city. Featuring the presence of 5000 viewers with 200 films from 50 different countries. [caption id="attachment_27642" align="alignnone" width="640"] The Old City of Jerusalem[/caption] Design Your Own Israel Guide for Next Time In case you wanted to add some extra stops to your agenda there are a ton of great options. Now that Shabbat is over and the city is back to life you can take a guided tour of Jerusalem at one of the many historic sites. Besides tours you can visit one of the city’s many unique museums, archeological sites, historic cemeteries, and synagogues. You will find that you could spend weeks in Jerusalem alone so you may have to save some of the sites for your next trip to Israel.   There is no better way to end your summer than with a trip around Israel. This is definitely one of the easiest countries to navigate and explore. On top of this the nation hosts some of the worlds top cultural events and sites. Whether you’re a local or thinking of making Israel your post-pandemic vacation destination, don’t hesitate to attend these Israeli festivals. You will get to experience Israel’s culture, creativity, and love of life.

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World Jewish Travel
World Jewish Travel Official September 26, 2021

5 International Jewish Cultural Festivals Happening This Summer

For the past year, we have been unable to gather in large numbers in order to make new memories and celebrate life. As we slowly return to life in a post-pandemic world, we are able to rekindle one of the long forgotten staples of summer, the festival.  Below are five Jewish cultural festivals happening this June around the globe that celebrate the diversity of Jewish culture and Jewish history.  If you’re in the area, or able to travel this summer, consider this is your official invitation to attend.   30th Jewish Culture Festival June 25th-July 4th The Jewish Cultural Festival in Krakow has celebrated the diversity of Jewish cultural life since 1988.  Today, the festival focuses on celebrating the contemporary dynamic world of Jewish life both within Israel and the diaspora.  Patrons can attend all night jam sessions and concerts in the main tent, sip mint tea and eat hummus at the festival café, or partake in any of the other numerous workshops, lectures, discussions, guided tours, and art exhibitions.  This year’s main festival project, “Kumzits,” focuses on eight public art projects in Kazimierz, the historical Jewish quarter of Krakow; this project is a collaborative effort between artists in Berlin, Jerusalem and Krakow. [caption id="attachment_25440" align="alignnone" width="640"] Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/FestiwalKulturyZydowskiejwKrakowie[/caption] 7th Jerusalem Jazz Festival  June 22nd-24th For those who enjoy taking in the sounds of jazz while wrapped in the ambiance of art, the Jerusalem Jazz Festival is your scene.  The festival began as a joint collaboration between the Israel Festival and the Israel Museum to create a dialogue between art, music, and festival visitors.  The festival is held in the sculpture garden of the Israel Museum and the artist’s original compositions are inspired by the artworks found in the museum.  This festival engages its audience in a visual and audible feast for the soul.  This year the festival will feature solely Israeli musicians from a wide array of contemporary styles that fuse Jazz with other musical traditions from classical to hip-hop.   [caption id="attachment_25436" align="alignnone" width="640"] Avishai Cohen, the co-founder and artistic director of the event, performs on stage during the Jerusalem Jazz Festival in Jerusalem on September 8, 2020. (Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP) https://www.timesofisrael.com/israeli-jazz-dares-jerusalem-festival-adapts-to-pandemic/[/caption] 29th Toronto Jewish Film Festival June 3-13 Since its debut in 1993, the Toronto Jewish Film Festival has sought to exhibit the diversity and contributions of Jewish culture through film.  Their selections represent a wide scope of Jewish cultural identity, innovation, and achievement.  The 2021 selections include Israeli Academy Award Winners, groundbreaking documentaries about marrying against one’s sexual orientation in Orthodoxy, ethnographic retrospectives, and even the first Torah to make it to outer space.  Unfortunately, this year’s festival will not be in person but rather virtual so you need not be in the Toronto area to attend; just go to their website and sign up! [caption id="attachment_25438" align="alignnone" width="600"] https://tjff.com/lineup-2021/[/caption] 5th Sababa Music Festival  June 11-13 The 5th annual Sababa Music Festival will be taking place this summer in Bethel, New York, just down the road from the site of the legendary Woodstock music festival.  This event is the ultimate Shabbat weekend uniting Jews of all denominations and backgrounds from the tri-state area in a celebration of Jewish culture and tradition.  The itinerary includes camping, bonfires, morning yoga, minyanim, and a headlining performance by the world-renown Israeli born international music ensemble, Yemen Blues. This festival combines the great outdoors with Jewish music, culture, and religion, a must for anyone trying to experience their own Jewish version of Woodstock.  [caption id="attachment_25435" align="alignnone" width="640"] Photo; Shimon Lindenblat, https://www.sababafest.com/2019-shimon-lindenblat[/caption] 16th Festival des Culture Juives (Festival of Jewish Culture) June 15-28 Le Festival des Cultures Juives, held in Paris, is the premier festival for international Jewish culture in France.  After the long year of separation between families due to the pandemic, this year the festival was curated around the concept of family entitled “Airs de Famille” (Family Resemblances).  Memory, heritage, and the transmission of culture are key pillars in each event and exhibition. There are twenty events that festival patrons can attend including film screenings, poetry readings, tours, and concerts, as well as conferences and debates on a wide variety of Jewish cultural traditions from around the world. [caption id="attachment_25437" align="alignnone" width="640"] DAFNÉ KRITHARAS : DE RHODES À TANGER[/caption] These festivals gather together people from all walks of life to absorb and commemorate the Jewish experience, past, present, and future.  In addition to a good time one can expect to learn a great deal about the diversity of Jewish life and appreciate the wide spectrum of culture that is Am Yisrael.  Whatever your preference, be it dancing the night away with a beer in your hand in Kazimierz, joining the havdalah drum circle at Sababa Fest, catching a Jazz trio at the Israel Museum, or taking in a documentary about a space Torah these festivals will certainly deliver.           

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World Jewish Travel
World Jewish Travel Official June 7, 2021

4 Ways to Escape the Summer Heat of Jerusalem

Depending on when you visit Israel, you may want to have a few activities to help cool off from the sizzling summer heat. Though the days are hot, it cools off at night making it the perfect time for walking around the city and exploring the vibrant nightlife. Here are a few activities and place to visit if you need to cool off during the day. Play in The Fountain at Teddy Park Boaz Dolev Pikiwiki Israel, CC BY 2.5 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5>, via Wikimedia Commons Teddy Park is a public park situated opposite Jerusalem's Old City and David's Citadel. The park was developed by the Jerusalem Foundation in memory of Jerusalem's long serving mayor, Teddy Kollek and opened to the public in 2013. The park complex includes  structures, landscaping, and a splash water fountain which is enjoyed by people of all ages during the summer months. Water shoots from the fountains in sync with music every 30 minutes; in the evening a light show plays while during the day children run among the water spouts. The fountain is said to be  a place where people from every segment of Jerusalem's ethnically and religiously varied population mingle with visitors from around the globe. Visit Yad Kennedy Wilson44691, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons In the breezy Jerusalem hills of the Match Yehuda Region lies the 60-foot high Yad Kennedy, or Kennedy Memorial. This memorial is for John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States who was assassinated in 1963. The shape of the memorial is that of a stump of a fallen tree to symbolize his life that was cut short and inside the bronze memorial is an eternal flame which burns in the center. The memorial is made of 51 concrete columns, one of each of the 50 states and an additional one for Washington D.C., the United States capital. Not only are these breezes from the mountains great for summer hikes, but there are breathtaking views and natural springs with cool water. Go Biking at the Train Track Park User:אלאר, CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons The Train Track Park is a rail trail urban park in West Jerusalem with 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) of walking and biking trails. The park follows the route of the original Jaffa–Jerusalem railway from the Jerusalem Railway Station near the German Colony to Teddy Stadium in Malha. The pedestrian path is a raised boardwalk made from molded concrete planks with an imitation wood finish, laid directly over the original railroad tracks and ties. To the side of the tracks is a paved bicycle path which you can take to the Biblical Zoo and Ein Lavan. If you don't have a bike, you can rent one at the First Station complex and start your journey from there. Indulge At The City's Top Rated Ice Cream Parlour, Mousseline Next to Shuk Machane Yehuda lies the Mousseline ice cream parlour which greets visitors with a variety of ice creams and sorbets. Along with traditional flavors this shop offers unique and vegan-friendly flavors of ice cream and sorbet such as black sesame, Matcha, wasabi, saffron, chai masala, lemon mint, and basil grapefruit. This shop has been highly rated by visitors and is a great place to stop during the hot summer for a refreshing treat.

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World Jewish Travel
World Jewish Travel Official June 7, 2021

Virtual Hanukkah Celebrations

From dreidels to latkes and everything in between, Hanukkah has become a holiday filled with joy and celebration. Known as the Festival of Light, Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem, freedom of worship and religion, and of course, the oil miraculously lasting 8 days when it was expected to last one. This year, continue your favorite Hanukkah traditions through a variety of virtual Hanukkah events and activities right from your home! Don't let this holiday season be any less exciting than the last. Hanukkah is meant to be celebrated, and thanks to the many virtual celebrations and activities listed below, this year will be just as exciting, tasty, and special as it has ever been before!  Festival: Virtual Israeli Cultural Evening and Chanukah Celebration December 10th, 2020; 8:00 PM to 9:30 PM EST Come join the Virtual Historic Tour of Hanukkah to not only celebrate this holiday season, but also to experience a virtual visit to Israel! Explore the rich history of Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Hebron, and Tel Aviv in a cultural and diverse Israeli-based evening. An expert tour guide will explain the origins of this joyous holiday, but it doesn't stop there! Take part in virtual Israeli cooking and wine demonstrations, with interactive and engaging musical and dance presentations from native performers. There will also be classic Hanukkah traditions and games for people of all ages to enjoy! Festival: Hanukkah - The Festival of Lights, Virtual Edition December 9th, 2020; 6:00 PM EST This Hanukkah, join The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and J Arts for a meaningful and exciting virtual celebration! There will be a variety of family-friendly programs and activities involving Hanukkah music, arts and crafts, Hanukkah stories, and digital Hanukkah animations. Honor the significant history and rich traditions through cultural music, dances, artist conversations, and a special community candle lighting ceremony. Film Festival: 8 Nights of Films for Hanukkah December 10th-17th, 2020; Time Varies for Different Events  To celebrate the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival's 40th anniversary, the Jewish Film Institute has organized a special and unique event, containing a drive-in movie and online screenings to honor the many decades of their history. Don't miss out on guests and remembrances relating to the Jewish cinema, with additional clips and trailers from the past 40 years. Join these 8 days of programming and have the opportunity to watch some well known Jewish classics such as “Film About A Father Who”, “Sublet”, and “Born in Jerusalem and Still Alive” to say a few. Make sure to light your candles, grab some latkes and sufganiyot, and enjoy a variety of films in honor of Hanukkah. Festival: Virtual Hanukkah Event December 11th-18th, 2020; Time Varies for Different Events  Let the JCC bring some added Hanukkah fun and excitement to you this holiday season! Creating beautiful crafts, taking a virtual photo gallery tour of unique Hanukiahs, and singing and dancing to a variety of Hanukkah music is only just the beginning of what this virtual event has to offer. Come hungry because you can find many new delicious recipes and view pre-recorded cooking demonstrations as well! Enjoy daily Maccabee Warrior intensive training with personal trainers, read nightly Hanukkah stories, and of course, don't miss out on virtual candle lighting ceremonies. You never know, maybe you’ll even discover new traditions to include in your future Hanukkah celebrations! Holiday: Hanukkah at Home - Virtual Worldwide Lighting December 22nd, 2020; 6:00 - 6:30 PM EST  Don't miss out on Lab/Shul Ritual Team for special Hanukkah inspired songs, stories, poetry, and more! Feel the joyous celebration as Rabbi Amichai and The Lab/Shul Team lead people of all ages and religions worldwide to light the symbolic holiday candles, illuminating so many houses around the world. Families with young children have an additional opportunity to join an 'Online Virtual Play Time' event. Here, join superstar kiddie rocker ShirLaLa, Lab/Shul Executive Director, Sarah Sokolic, and special guests of all ages including our favorite puppets! Holiday: Latkes & Light, A Virtual Family Hanukkah Celebration  December 13th, 2020; 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM EST  While people may not physically be together this Hanukkah, no one should ever be celebrating alone! Join the Jewish Community Center of Denver to light and bless the Hanukkah menorahs together, as one large community. This celebration is geared towards children ages 2-10, who will have the opportunity to sing, dance, and play Hanukkah themed activities. This event will feature educators from Jewish Explorers, Judaism Your Way, Staenberg-Loup Jewish Community Center, and PJ Library. Additionally, in honor of this celebration, The Tzedakah Project will benefit the JFS Weinberg Food Pantry, and there will be further discussions about the significance and impact that Tzedakah has on the world!  Festival: Holiday of Holidays December 10th-20th, 2020; Time Varies for Different Events  This Hanukkah, take part in the unique Holiday of Holidays Festival and contribute to promoting tolerance and mutual respect through culture and art! While exhibits are unfortunately unable to be physically displayed, join the online events showcasing art exhibitions and artist meetings, allowing one to be exposed to the beautiful array of culture and diversity within Israel. This festival provides the opportunity to take part in activities highlighting the positivity and benefits of developing relationships with other cultures. Learn the significance of breaking these unnecessary barriers, and develop or strengthen your trust between a variety of nationalities, ethnic groups, and religious groups throughout the Holy Land.  Festival: Hanukkah 2020 Gift December 10th-17th, 2020; Time Varies Based on Location Come and join eight international tour guides as they guide us on a virtual trip around the world! Explore Jewish geography, discover the captivating history, and even take a hot air balloon tour, all while meeting other Jewish participants in this exciting virtual opportunity!  Expand your Jewish community to people you never thought you would meet and connect with groups from Australia, Uganda, Turkey, Italy, Spain, and so much more. Give the gift of learning this Hanukkah season and get exposed to the significance and beauty of Jewish diversity all around the world.

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World Jewish Travel presents virtual tours!

Take a tour of the Anne Frank Museum, Auschwitz-Birkenau or Jewish Rome. 🇪🇺 These tours are just a small piece of the European Jews' history, which spans a period of over two thousand years ✡️

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#JewishRome, #AnneFrankHouse, #JewishAmsterdam #AuschwitzBirkenau, #JewishHistory, #AnneFrankMuseum #Poland, #TravelRome

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"Let your bookcases and your shelves be your gardens and your pleasure grounds. Pluck their fruit that grows therein, father the roses, the spices, and the myrrh" Visit the Ets Haim Library, the oldest still functioning Jewish library (since 1639!) on your next visit to Amsterdam! #wjt #wjh #jewishamsterdam #amsterdam #jewishtravel #books #library #jewishamsterdam ...

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