We mentioned that Shavuot, the Feast of Weeks, falls on May 24. According to Jewish tradition, Moses received the Law on Shavuot. This tradition took center stage when the Temple was destroyed and the regular first fruits offerings could no longer be made in Jerusalem. However, the pioneers of the early 20th century who returned to Israel and successfully farmed the Land reinstituted the agricultural emphasis of the holiday. In contemporary bikkurim (first fruit) festivals, children (often but not always dressed in white) wear floral wreaths (as in this photo) and carry baskets of produce in parades. Artistic performances such as reciting poems, singing, dancing, showing artwork, and dramatic skits all play a part in modern Israeli Shavuot celebrations.


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