Thursday, February 16, 2012

DafYomi Dignifies Dream Destination














When Rav Meir Shapiro first proposed the idea (At the first Agudah conference in 1923) that Jews all over the world should learn the same page of Talmud daily, completing the 2711 pages in approximately 7.5 years, his dream quickly became reality.

Yet nobody could possibly have dreamed that almost a century later, the Siyum celebration will take place in a destination which is the antithesis of all that Daf Yomi stands for - MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford NJ.


MetLife stadium is brand new, and is home for the metropolitan football teams, among them the New York Giants, this year's Superbowl champions.

This state-of-the-art arena has seating for 82,566 fans. It is the newest and most expensive of all NFL stadiums, and the DafYomi commission plans to seat over 90,000 individuals within.

Rabbonim and Maggidei Shiur will be afforded preferred seating. Women will comprise about 25% of the seats. Additionally, a Mechitza will separate between the men and women.

According to Wikipedia, Twenty giant high-definition-ready light emitting diode (LED) pylons display videos of the action. The pylons measure approximately 54 feet high by 20 feet wide. Inside, four 30 feet by 116 feet video displays from Daktronics, which incorporate high definition video technology, hang from each corner of the upper deck. This will enable just about anyone to follow the program, even from the cheapest seats.

Seats range from 18$ to 1000$, with the additional seating available on the field itself.

Daf Yomi celebrations have increased exponentially for the last few cycles. In 1975 there were only 1200 participants at the Manhattan Center. I was in attendance in 1982 when the Felt Forum was host to 5500 attendees. 1990 saw the Siyum in Madison Square Garden, and I joined 20,000 others along with many senior Roshei Yeshiva of the past generation. The highlight of the evening was the Maariv Tefillah, where the gentile ushers marvelled how 20,000 people could be totally silent during the Amidah.

1997 began the era of hook-ups, and the Nassau Coliseum joined MSG for a joint celebration. The most recent Siyum took place in 2005 at MSG and the Continental Airlines Arena, along with other sites for a total of 100,000 participants.

Although August 1st seems like a long time away, it will be here before you know it. Tickets are now on sale, so call the Agudah at (212) 797-9000 or Fax (646) 254-1610 or email siyumhashas@agudathisrael.org or call (877) SIYUM12. I assume this will be a sellout, and it will not be easy to find tickets when the summer rolls around.

3 comments:

  1. This is a momentous occasion. Something to bring little children to that they will cherish for a lifetime. I'm sure there will be those who say that the stadium was built just to service the Daf Yomi celebration.

    ReplyDelete
  2. http://www.5tjt.com/local-news/13311-metlife-stadium-to-build-a-mechitzah

    ReplyDelete
  3. MO May Make MehitzaFebruary 22, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    Why not have those who are not stringent on sitting next to women act as the Mehitza by seating them all in the sections that border the women?

    ReplyDelete

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