On Thursday, January 2, the Temple Mount Sifting Project will celebrate its grand re-opening. Over the past three weeks, our giant tent has undergone a dramatic change. After our greenhouse was crushed by Jerusalem’s extraordinary snowstorm in mid-December, it was necessary to totally dismantle the entire tent structure and erect a brand new tent. Thankfully, our insurance coverage has provided us with a larger, stronger and much more serviceable workplace.
Even though we cringed when we first saw the damage after the storm, we were pleasantly surprised to find that much of the infrastructure survived unscathed. Our presentation board with its rotating pictures stood undamaged, even as the ribs of the tent frame were bent over it by the weight of the snow. Although the legs of our artifacts display table in the center of the tent collapsed and broke, the display board itself with all the artifacts and information labels remained in one piece – and the glass top did not even crack! In our small archaeologist’s storage room at the back of the tent, the shelves tilted and bent, but all our artifacts stored in bags, buckets and boxes remained unharmed. And not one bucket of artifacts, out of the hundreds stored in the tent, was overturned.
We welcome you to come celebrate the beginning of 2014 with us in our new greenhouse, and help us continue to our work of uncovering the history of the Temple Mount.