For me, arrival in Long Beach, or as it’s known this time of year ,”Jewlicious Festival HQ,” was last night. After a lovely tour of the Long Beach Airport area (shout-out to Jordan, thanks for the pickup), I headed out to Beit Bookstein, where the preparations are round-the-clock. As I walked in and saw the computers set up it occurred to me: this is where the magic happens. (At least partially. Magic also happens in Jerusalem, New York, and at the Long Beach Hillel, through intense student efforts.)

This morning, we all sat there–me, CK, Rachel and the Hartman of Matzah Ball Gumbo–at our respective computers and on our respective cell phones, taking calls, blogging, emailing, instant messaging and all manner of other communication (CK is in charge of smoke signals, and I’ve been reading tea leaves) in order to make this international festival an event to remember.

The numbers for participation keep steadily rising–just ten minutes ago, two more people signed up. We’re going to be a full house. So make sure to get your tickets now––for the weekend, for the concerts, whatever…but don’t miss the amazing energy of this once-annual chance to revel, celebrate, inquire, share and explore all things Jewish.

Heck…Britney may even be there. One never knows.*

* Yeah, we pretty much know she’s not going to be there. Mostly because we didn’t invite her. But no one invited her to shave her head, either, and she did that anyway. So there you go.

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Esther Kustanowitz

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