Beth El in Bethesda has some fun ahead of High Holidays


What do Elvis Presley, George Harrison, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney have in common? Not much. But Congregation Beth El of Montgomery County used cardboard cutouts of the four celebrities in preparation for its High Holiday services. 

Last month, the Bethesda-based congregation purchased new HD cameras for its sanctuary. The equipment is intended to enhance the production of this year’s High Holiday services. Camera-operators used the cardboard cutouts as stand-ins to practice on as the new cameras can change position and be operated remotely. The congregation had used the cutouts as decoration for past Beth El galas and then placed them in storage.  

Photos of the set-up were posted to the synagogue’s Facebook page on July 22. Hazzan Asa Fradkin, the synagogue’s cantor, said he found the set-up humorous.

“I laughed so hard when I walked in the sanctuary,” he said. “ So of course I immediately took photos. Just a good fun way for us to have some levity during the pandemic.”

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