Tel Aviv’s 2015 White Night celebration was truly fantastic. It’s one thing to read about the city’s famous tagline – the non-stop city – and another sensation to be a part of its biggest annual cultural event.

Hundreds of thousands of people took part in the White Night Europa event. Even the weather – unseasonably windy and cool – cooperated with the theme in tribute to European culture.

Israelis attend Tel Aviv's White Night all-night celebration in Tel Aviv, Israel, Thursday, June 25, 2014. Photo by Miriam Alster/Flash90 *** Local Caption *** ???? ??? ?? ????
Israelis attend Tel Aviv’s White Night all-night celebration in Tel Aviv, Israel, Thursday, June 25, 2014. Photo by Miriam Alster/Flash90

The organization was phenomenal and even though the city’s population swelled for the night of June 25, there were so many activities on offer that nothing was too crowded.

Festival-goers had their choices of music, theater, dance, movies, lectures, tours, food tasting, circus, fashion shows, jazz, jam sessions, art and more.
Our night began at Bialik Square at the historical Town Hall of Tel Aviv. The outdoor square was transformed into a fictitious kingdom with a guillotine at its center. Titled “The Execution of Clown X,” this show was a circus event that had the audience gasping aloud as flying trapeze artists did petrifying stunts in the air, marching bands led a clown to his execution, and acrobats defied gravity.

Headphones party during White Night. Photo by Miriam Alster/FLASH90 ???????  ????? ????? ??????? ????? ??????? ?????? ?????
Headphones party during White Night. Photo by Miriam Alster/FLASH90

The municipality illuminated 50 architecturally significant buildings in the White City, and Bialik Square’s Town Hall looked magnificent.

From there we walked with the crowds and found ourselves in Gan Meir, on King George and Tchernichovsky streets in the center of Tel Aviv. Actor-musician Idan Alterman was strumming popular rock songs but had altered their lyrics entirely. It was a standup comedy show in music. And though we hadn’t planned on staying, we were drawn in with hundreds of others. He was very witty and clever both with the new lyrics and in his audience banter.

We debated whether or not to stay till the end but we wanted to try and catch the DeliShow – a fusion show of fashion and cuisine with star Israeli and European chefs and fashion designers collaborating to prepare food and clothing – on Rothschild Boulevard. Though the program said the event would run till midnight, we found our 11:15pm arrival was too late.

Bialik Town Hall never looked more festive. Photo by Viva Sarah Press
Bialik Town Hall never looked more festive. Photo by Viva Sarah Press

No worries. We sauntered up the city’s most famous boulevard, stopping to listen to the bands lining the throughway. There was also a “dream graffiti” station outside one of the local fashion stores – on which people could add their dreams.

The atmosphere was one of celebration. Everyone seemed happy to see others out, alongside them, enjoying the city of Tel Aviv.

Israelis attend Tel Aviv's White Night all-night celebration in Tel Aviv, Israel, Thursday, June 25, 2014. Photo by Miriam Alster/Flash90
Israelis attend Tel Aviv’s White Night all-night celebration in Tel Aviv, Israel, Thursday, June 25, 2014. Photo by Miriam Alster/Flash90

 

“The Execution of Clown X” was a circus event. Photo by Viva Sarah Press
“The Execution of Clown X” was a circus event. Photo by Viva Sarah Press

 

Former President Shimon Peres and Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai hosted about 1,000 people at "White Night at the Peres Center for Peace," opening the evening with popcorn and a movie on the beach in Jaffa. Photo courtesy of Peres Center for Peace
Former President Shimon Peres and Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai hosted about 1,000 people at “White Night at the Peres Center for Peace,” opening the evening with popcorn and a movie on the beach in Jaffa. Photo courtesy of Peres Center for Peace