Monday, July 18, 2022

The Meal of a Lifetime

As anyone who has attended one of the Biblical Museum of Natural History's special dinners will tell you, they are the meal of a lifetime. It's a unique experience that combines halacha, Jewish history and culture, and extraordinary food. Our three different menus - a Biblical Feast of Birds & Beasts, a Feast of Exotic Curiosities, and a Feast of Legends from the Sea - are out of this world! 

They are also an adventure to arrange. Past experiences include a secret meeting with a guy on a dark street corner in Tel Aviv late at night for a deal involving piranhas, a lengthy and ultimately failed attempt to recapture escaped geese, experiments with a Locust-o-matic machine, emergency rehousing of a Very Large Creature from one yeshivah after their walk-in freezer suddenly broke and rehousing in a different yeshiva, struggling to restrain a deer, trying to convince a group of swordfish hunters that I wasn't a spy from the Department of Fish & Wildlife, having expensive pheasants beheaded by one of the museum's more wild animals, extensive apologies to my wife for a persistent smell in the car, and asking Poskim some of the strangest questions that they have ever been asked.

The benefits of these meals go beyond the people who attend. Aside from raising the profile of the museum, the publicity and photos surrounding them spread educational messages. Locusts are kosher! Halacha is fascinating! Kashrut is cool!

These events were initiated many years ago by my friends Rabbis Dr. Ari Zivotofsky and Ari Greenspan, who subsequently discontinued them, for a very simple reason - such events are incredibly complicated and expensive to produce. We took up the challenge, and have produced seven such events - three in Israel, three in Los Angeles, and one in Teaneck. But we are also finding that the complications and cost of arranging them are staggering.

At the moment, we are considering producing an event in Israel just after Yom Kippur, and/or in Florida sometime in the fall. In order to proceed, we need to secure event sponsors. If you're interested in making such an event happen, and in having a behind-the-scenes look at the adventures involved in these things, please write to advancement@BiblicalNaturalHistory.org.


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12 comments:

  1. Why was the last post deleted?

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  2. I once attended a seudah of this sort and couldn't eat a crumb. Something like dangerously sick people refusing to eat on Yom Kippur, I suppose.

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  3. I’m assuming everything about this event is 100% kosher and I have zero issues with it. That said how many people find the first image in the post to be visually appealing and appetite inducing? I’m curious.

    Frank

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  4. What on gods forsaken earth is that black and yellow creature???

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  5. The dinners are a good thing because it highlights different masorahs - and different opinions, quite apart from masorah - in halacha. That is well and good. To say, patronizingly, that such a dinner shows "halacha is fascinating and kashrut is cool!"? It doesn't, and it isn't.

    GP

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    Replies
    1. I think someone expressed this sentiment somewhere else… but Mr Pickles has to be the life of the party

      Frank

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    2. That black and yellow creature is The Shor HaBor that the righteous tzadikim will eat after Moshiach’s presence is confirmed. Rav Slifkin, are you the one? When can we expect a nice helping of Levyason? But will I need different forks to sample both at the same meal?

      Delete
  6. Why would anyone think that piranhas aren’t kosher?

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  7. Still waiting for you to do such an event in London. I am sure there is appetite for it (pun intended).

    ReplyDelete

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