Nishmat is well-versed in repurposing spaces. What was once a parking lot is now our beloved Beit Midrash, a beisment of the best variety, with nishot (niches) that are perfect for a medium-sized car (or class) . But this week, Nishmat’s actual garage experienced a transformation – Shana BaAretz created a carnival right on campus. Crepe ribbons hung on all the walls, golden paper covered every surface and balloons littered the floor.
On the 14th of Adar, Nishmat welcomed all of Pat’s kids and parents to a Shuk Purim. Fairies with wings a-flutter, Kohanim Gedolim with colorful ephodim, little ladybugs and a whole lot of superheroes streamed in to play games and win prizes. Shana BaAretz staffed all the booths – from bowling to Pin the Tail on Vashti, from balloon shaving to crazy mirrored mazes. Children ran around with elaborately painted faces, and held up masks made in the art room. Parents also joined in the fun, helping toddlers aim waterguns and wearing balloon crowns on their heads.
A super-intense game of bingo was played during the second half of the shuk, with question prompts and answers like “127”, “After the Churban” and “Achashverosh”. In typical nahafoch hu-style, the raffle’s grand prize- a bike with pink streamers- was won by a little baby girl. And the costume contest’s first place winner was a well-dressed bar of white chocolate.
Probably the best part of Shuk Purim was the feeling of chesed and community. In a month that’s all about happiness, Nishmat celebrated the simcha of Adar with the kehilla of Pat, sharing laughs and smiles.