If you're someone who has a taste for the absurd, the Tel Aviv Centential's attempt to set up a replica of a Tel Aviv beach in Central Park was certainly something to snack on, and not only because the weather this June in New York City has been so rainy that every time one looks up at the Empire State Building one half expects it to turn into the Space Needle. According to the Centential's press release:

"The Tel Aviv Beach Party will feature leading Israeli bands, music, entertainment and vibe, and will transform the Naumberg Bandshell area in Central Park to an authentic Mediterranean beach front. In addition, a 1,300 square foot sand section featuring chairs and parasols will allow sunbathing fans the perfect tanning experience."

And indeed it did, the intent quite obviously being to attract secular American tourists to Israel (as opposed to religious Jews or fundamentalist Christians). But something seemed a bit forced about the attempt to advertise Tel Aviv as just another version of South Beach or Malibu, if only because the NYPD, obviously expecting protests, had set up a permieter around the beach party.

It all got a bit surreal when several of the bikini girls turned out to be Code Pink Activists.