Platters of apple slivers prepared for dunking in honey are a holiday ritual symbolizing hope for a sweet New Year.
The Jewish Federation of Orange County is on its way to starting another New Year tradition by again urging residents to buy Israeli-made honey for their own Rosh Hashanah tables as well as contributing a jar to an Israeli family.
This year, six other Jewish communities in Western states are joining in the "Honey for the Holidays" promotion, started by the broad-based O.C. Israel Solidarity Task Force, said Bunnie Mauldin, the Federation's executive director. "We are with you in sweetness and sorrow," reads the card that will be attached to hundreds of honey jars expected to be distributed in the Israeli communities of Kiryat Malachi and Hof Ashkelon.
Some of the nectar-filled jars, produced by the Hof Askelon apairy, Yad Mordechai, are also available for sale at several distribution points through October. Sites include Costa Mesa's Jewish Community Center, Irvine's Tarbut V'Torah Community Day School, Rancho Santa Margarita's Morasha Jewish Day School, Santa Ana's Temple Beth Sholom and Fountain Valley's Congregation B'nai Tzedek. A donation in multiples of $18 is requested, with extra funds going toward worthwhile projects in Israel.
For several years, Orange County has sent aid and visitors to the two Israeli towns. Last year, their cumulative gifts provided scholarships for higher education to four families, Mauldin said.
For more information or to order jars, call the Jewish Federation of Orange County at (714) 755-5555.