DSC_0025After 15 years being closed, the Jerusalem Railway Station reopened May 14, 2013, before Shavuot, under the name, The First Station, for a full day of exciting, fun activities.

An attractive young woman and man, dressed like train conductors, handed out information sheets and flowers; six restaurants were packed; 16 vendors sold produce, organic crops, dairy products, breads and pastries, herbs and spices and more in a farmers’ market; a large number of artisans displayed their wares in the “A Matter of Design Market”; clothes by 30 designers were displayed in the Station Urban Fashion area. Jewelry booths, stuffed animals, children’s clothes and books and building kits in wood were among the things to buy.

Parents and children sat in a tented area on a canvas floor watching a variety of performers. Opening day one could find plenty to eat from ice cream and toppings, beer from the Shapira Brewery (located in the industrial zone of Beit Shemesh), and corn on the cob (from Moshav Argaman in the Jordan Valley) to dim sum (from Laavote Chaviva factory), kubeh and other foods in a wrap by a Druze from Dalyat el Carmel and vegan hot dogs and potatoes with fillings from Alex Potatoes of Tel Aviv.

A woman in green was dressed like a street lamp and ready to be photographed by all. The exhibit room shows the old rail station history in photographs and slide shows from its 1892 opening to its 1998 closing.

Each of the various bazaars and restaurants will have various days and hours of opening and will be an interesting and refreshing attraction for locals and visitors.

Check their website, http://www.firststation.co.iul/en/ for days and times of markets and restaurants.

  • photo by Barry A. Kaplan