Purim in the Deep South

Here is a list of Purim events in the region: Alabama Anniston ’s Temple Beth El will have a Purim service with Rabbi Lauren Cohn on M...

Here is a list of Purim events in the region:

Alabama

Anniston’s Temple Beth El will have a Purim service with Rabbi Lauren Cohn on March 15 at 7:30 p.m.

Birmingham’s Knesseth Israel will have a Hawaiian Purim, March 20, with the megillah reading at 7:30 p.m. and dinner at 8 p.m. There will be a fire performance, interactive entertainment and games for all ages. Suggested donation is $18, or $36 per family.

The Bais Ariel Chabad Center in Birmingham will have Purim in New York City on March 21, with a megillah reading at 4:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 5 p.m. The dinner will feature New York deli, street artists, an open bar and music. Reservations are $18 for adults, $10 for children, $60 maximum for a family.

Purim on Highland Avenue will be a joint venture of Birmingham’s Temple Beth-El and Temple Emanu-El.
Highland Tribe will have Esther’s Bachelorette Party, March 16 at 7:30 p.m. at the home of Alan Bromberg. The group is for all young professionals, of all genders, in their 20s and 30s.
On March 17, the joint Purim carnival will be at Emanu-El, starting at 9:30 a.m. The Purim celebration and megillah reading will be on March 20 at Beth-El, with Purim Tot Not Shabbat at 5 p.m., a Purim Spiel and costume contest at 5:30 p.m., a Purim celebration with dinner, music, dancing, wine and beer at 6:15 p.m., and The Whole Megillah Reading at 7 p.m. Beth-El will also have a megillah reading on March 21 during the 7 a.m. daily minyan.

A community-wide Women’s Megillah Reading will be held at the N.E. Miles Jewish Day School in Birmingham on March 21 at 3:30 p.m. Women of all age and boys under 12 are welcome. Costumes are encouraged and light refreshments will be served.

There will be a Chesed Committee Purim celebration at Brookdale Place in Birmingham on March 21 at 1:30 p.m., led by Rabbi Stephen Slater and Sarah Metzger.

Temple B’nai Sholom in Huntsville will have an Intergenerational Purim Pizza Party Pageant with Prizes, March 15 at 5 p.m., a Sisterhood hamantaschen bake on March 20 at 3 p.m., and a Purim event on March 20 at 5:30 p.m.

Etz Chayim in Huntsville will have a free Purim hot dog dinner on March 20 at 6 p.m., and the Purim program at 6:45 p.m.

Chabad of Huntsville will have Purim in Full Color, March 21 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Homewood Suites downtown, with dinner, costumes and a megillah reading. Reservations are $18 for adults, $10 per child, $50 family maximum.

The Mobile Area Jewish Federation will have a Purim party at Springhill Avenue Temple on March 24 from 2 to 5 p.m. There will be trivia, Bingo, Mah Jongg, wine and beer for adults, while kids will have games, crafts and face painting. There will be a costume parade and contest at 3 p.m., and contest hamantaschen at 4 p.m. Reservations are $10 for adults, including two drinks and two Bingo cards, and $2 for children.

Ahavas Chesed in Mobile will have a megillah reading on March 20 at 6 p.m., preceded by a pizza dinner at 5:30 p.m.

Chabad of Mobile will add to the Purim celebration with the Upshernish of Dovber, the son of Rabbi Yosef and Bina Goldwasser, March 21 at 5:30 p.m. A full dinner will be served, along with a multimedia megillah reading.

Montgomery’s congregations will have a joint Purim service, with Agudath Israel-Etz Ahayem going to Temple Beth Or for the 6 p.m. megillah reading at Temple Beth Or. A reception will follow.

Chabad at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa will host Glow Purim, March 20 from 10 p.m. to midnight at the Boom-Boom Room. There will be a bar tab for ages 21 and up, food and hamantaschen. Neon and glowing attire encouraged.

The University of Alabama Hillel will have a Purim party on March 20 starting at 10 p.m. at The Wheelhouse Pub, with a bar tab, live band, costume contest, Uber gift cards, games and late-night food.


Florida Panhandle


Chabad Emerald Coast in Destin will have its annual Purim Around the World on March 21 at 5:30, with a visit to Purim in Morocco. In addition to the megillah reading, there will be Moroccan cuisine and heritage, and Moroccan costumes are encouraged.

Beth Shalom in Fort Walton Beach will have a family Purim service and Purim Players shpiel, March 22 at 6:30 p.m.

B’nai Israel in Panama City will have a lay-led Shabbat service with megillah reading on March 15 at 7 p.m., following a 6 p.m. potluck dinner. The religious school’s Purim party will be March 17 from 9 to 11 a.m.

Chabad in Panama City Beach will have a Purim party on March 21 at 5:30 p.m., with a megillah reading, meal, masquerade and surprises for the children.

The Pensacola Jewish Federation’s annual Purim Carnival will be March 10 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at Creative Learning Academy. There will be a bounce house, obstacle course, face painting, games and prizes. There will be $2 packages for a hot dog, chips and drink.

Pensacola’s Temple Beth El will have a Shabbat Purim service on March 15 at 6 p.m., followed by a Purim-themed covered dish dinner, where a Middle Eastern entrée will be provided.

Pensacola Chabad will have Megillah and Cocktails on March 20 at 7:30 p.m., at the home of Rabbi Mendel and Nechama Danow. There will be a dinner buffet, and reservations are appreciated. On March 21 at 5:30 p.m., there will be a Purim Feast for all ages at Seville Quarter’s Heritage Hall. Costumes are encouraged, there will be an express megillah reading, Purim cuisine and hamantaschen. Suggested donation is $18, sponsorships start at $180.


Louisiana

Gemiluth Chassodim in Alexandria will have an Adult and Kids Purim Talent Show on March 20.

Chabad of Baton Rouge is holding several Purim events, starting with the Queen’s Tea, celebrating the royalty of Jewish women, March 10 at 6 p.m. at the home of Leslie and Steven Loeb.

On March 20, there will be a megillah reading and light refreshments, held with the Jewish students at Louisiana State University. Time and location to be announced. On March 21 at 5 p.m., there will be “Purim in the NYC Deli,” at BREC’s Highland Road Community Park. There will be a megillah reading, all-you-can-eat New York deli, a graffiti wall and street performer. Reservations are $15 for adults, $8 for children, $40 per family and $180 minimum to sponsor.

B’nai Israel in Baton Rouge will have a Purim performance by The Bible Players improv group on March 17 at 10:45 a.m. The congregation’s Purim dinner and megillah reading will be March 20 at 6 p.m. Dinner reservations are $10.

Beth Shalom, Baton Rouge, will have a Purim party and dairy potluck, March 20 at 5:30 p.m.

Temple Shalom in Lafayette will have a Purim service with Student Rabbi Ross Levy on March 22 at 7:30 p.m., after a 6:30 p.m. dairy Shabbat dinner. There will also be an adult education session on Purim on March 23 at 7 p.m., at the home of Edye and Kenny Mayers.

Rabbi Aaron Rozovsky of the Institute for Southern Jewish Life will lead a Purim service at B’nai Israel in Monroe on March 22 at 6 p.m.

Anshe Sfard in New Orleans will have a megillah reading on March 20, around 7:45 p.m. The reading will be followed by a party with a live jazz band and a costume contest.

Beth Israel, JNOLA and Jewish Community Day School will host a Young Families Purim Party, March 20 at Beth Israel in Metairie, with a Legoland theme. Services and megillah reading will be at 7 p.m. There will be dinner for kids at 6:30 p.m. and for adults at 8 p.m., with Lego-inspired themed drinks. On March 21, Beth Israel will have a megillah reading at the 8 a.m. service.

Jewish Community Day School in Metairie will host Shushan’s Got Talent, March 21 at 8:30 a.m.

At Gates of Prayer in Metairie, there will be a Munchkin Minyan dinner and crafts on March 20 at 6 p.m., Munchkin Minyan hamantaschen making at 6:30 p.m., then they parade their costumes into the sanctuary at 7 p.m. Adult and teen events begin then, with megillah reading at 7:15 p.m., “Jews Line Is It Anyway” at 7:30 p.m., and breakout activities at 8 p.m. Activities include Israeli whiskey tasting, headpiece making, mask making for teens, and hamantaschen eating.

Shir Chadash in Metairie will have Purim and Panorama on March 20, with a 6 p.m. kids’ costume parade with prizes, followed by a theatrical megillah reading by guest reader Daniel Olson. At approximately 7 p.m., there will be a Second Line, led by Panorama Jazz Band, followed by Purim snacks, hamantaschen and dancing. Babysitting will be available. Morning services with a megillah reading will be held on March 21 at 7 a.m.

Chabad of Louisiana will have its annual Purim event on March 21 at 6 p.m. The ‘80s Purim Party will be at Slater Torah Academy, with a 5:30 p.m. pre-party for parents and children. Megillah readings will be held at 5:30 and 6:20 p.m. in a side room. There will be live music by Panorama. Reservations are $18 for adults, $10 for children y March 17, higher after. Sponsor levels start at $180.

Touro Synagogue in New Orleans will have Mystery Megillah Theater 5000 with Cantor Kevin Margolius and Rabbi Todd Silverman, March 20 at 6 p.m. As the megillah is chanted, some of Touro’s “funniest members” will provide commentary and local flavor. The event is geared for adults and teens.

Rabbi Silverman will also lead an In the Kitchen session at Touro, “They Attacked Us, We Won… Let’s Eat,” March 14 at 6 p.m., with a Purim theme as hamantaschen are made. Space is limited. Reservations are no charge for members, $18 for non-members.

The 50th annual community-wide Purim celebration will be held on March 17, from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Uptown Jewish Community Center. The afternoon includes food, music, games and activities for all ages. The “Human Hamster Balls” and giant slide are back, as are the inflatables. There will be Middle Eastern delicacies and New York-style deli items, snowballs, popcorn and homemade hamantashen. Admission to the carnival is free and open to the community. A children’s All Day Play Pass is $12, or $10 with a donation of nonperishable items for the Broadmoor Food Pantry.

Chabad Grads at Tulane University will have its annual Purim feast on March 21, at the home of Rabbi Yochanan Rivkin. The megillah reading will be at 6:30 p.m., followed by the feast at 6:30 p.m. The costume theme is to be announced.

The North Louisiana Jewish Federation will have its annual Community Purim Carnival on March 17 at 10:30 a.m. at B’nai Zion in Shreveport. There will be new games, bounce houses, face painting, arts and crafts, carnival food and a cake walk. Lunch will be available from Athena’s Greek and Lebanese Restaurant starting at 11:30 a.m.

B’nai Zion in Shreveport will hold its Purim service on March 22 at 6 p.m., with King Pantherverosh and other Marvel characters doing their take on the Purim story in Shushanakanda.

Agudath Achim in Shreveport will hold a Purim dairy/pareve covered dish dinner on March 20 at 6 p.m., followed by the megillah reading and the play “Purim Begins.”


Mississippi

Chabad of Mississippi in Biloxi will have Purim in Mexico, March 21 at 5:30 p.m., with a megillah reading followed by a kosher Mexican dinner, children’s program, margaritas and a costume contest.

B’nai Israel in Columbus will hold a Shabbat service followed by a purim dress-up party on March 22. Time was not set as of press time.

Hebrew Union Congregation in Greenville will have its Purim lunch on March 24 at 11 a.m.

Beth Israel in Gulfport will have its Purim celebration on March 17, with a Purim carnival at 10 a.m., followed by lunch at 11:30 a.m. and the megillah reading with Rabi Norry at 12:30 p.m. There will be a costume contest with prizes in several categories.

B’nai Israel in Hattiesburg will have a Sisterhood Purim party, Havdallah, Hamentaschen and Hors d’Oeuvres, March 23 at 6 p.m. Pizza will be served, but bring an hors d’oeuvre, and BYOB. There will also be a hamantaschen contest. Reservations are $10 per family.

Beth Israel in Jackson will have Purim with Pizmon, the co-ed, pluralistic Jewish a cappella group of Columbia University, Barnard College and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, on March 20. Beth Israel Temple Youth will hold a Purim carnival from 5:30 to 6 p.m. in the social hall, then there will be music, megillah reading and a Pizmon Purim Spiel in the sanctuary starting at 6:15 p.m. The Pizmon singers will also lead a megillah reading on March 21 at 9:30 a.m.

The Jewish Federation of Oxford will host a Family Purim Party at the Rosen/Bloomekatz home, Marc 24 from 2 to 4 p.m. There will be hamantaschen baking, a grogger-making session and a reading of the Purim story. Costumes are encouraged.

B’nai Israel in Tupelo will have a Purim potluck supper and megillah reading on March 24 at 5 p.m.
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Southern Jewish Life: Purim in the Deep South
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