Fulfilling a Lifelong Dream

Fulfilling a Lifelong Dream

A MOTHER AND DAUGHTER TRIP TO ISRAEL

BY LAVERNE STEVENS

Jordan Kennedy is new to Polk County, having moved here in July. Kennedy works in motorsports; she will live in Florida and still maintain her connection with IndyCar Series, her employer in Indianapolis. “My job requires me to travel to most races throughout the season starting with the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in March.” Kennedy works in the Partner Strategy department, a division of sales focused on the development and execution of activation plans for the INDYCAR series sponsors.

Kennedy has always been interested in religion and the history of the territory where it all began. Her dream trip has been to travel to these areas and walk on the same ground where important biblical events occurred. She reached a point in her life where she felt able to make this trip. When she spoke to her mother about it, they decided to go together and make it a “mother/daughter” trip.

PetraCamel

Kennedy flew to Dallas to meet her mother, Susan Warmack. Together, they flew to Newark, New Jersey, where a flight took the tour of 25 people to the Holy Land, landing in Tel Aviv. A bus took them from Tel Aviv to Golan Heights along the northern border of Israel. There were ATV rides on the Syria/Lebanon border. At one point, they stopped to climb a mountain were they stood in awe, seeing Syria and Lebanon from this site. “This gave us a perspective on how compact the countries are in this area,” said Kennedy.

They stayed in Mitzpe Hayamim, an organic hotel & spa for three nights. The hotel was on a self-sustaining farm. All food was from field to table. “The food we were served throughout this trip was the most exquisite I have ever seen or tasted,” said Kennedy. The city was Rosh Pina. The view of the Sea of Galilee was spectacular in Rosh Pina. Next to Rosh Pina is Tzfat, an Orthodox Jewish community known for its art galleries.

Back to Tel Aviv for one night, and then a flight to Eilat for a two night stay and a day trip to Jordan. While in Jordan, the people there were fascinated by the fact that Kennedy’s first name is Jordan. The city of Petra was a special treat. This city is carved out of a rocky area. There is only one way in and one way out, and one can only proceed in through the small space provided by walking on foot or riding a camel. This was a very interesting site and riding a camel was a new experience.

DeadSea

The tour group was then driven by bus to Jerusalem for a four-night stay. There they visited Yad Vashem, Israel’s National Holocaust Museum, and had an underground tour of the old city. They did a day trip to Masada, which is located on the Dead Sea. Masada was absolutely breathtaking! It is the ancient fortress built by Herod the Great between 37 and 31 BCE. Another day trip included Bethlehem where The Church of the Nativity was visited. They saw the site where Jesus was born and laid in the manger. They also visited the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, where they saw the site where Jesus was crucified and buried.

This was an experience Kennedy and Warmack will never forget. “We were treated with respect everywhere we went as we traveled throughout the small countries,” said Kennedy.

 

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