The Central Valley Holocaust Memorial - chabadofbakersfield.com
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The Central Valley Holocaust Memorial
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A GARDEN, NOT A JUNGLE

The Memorial is open to the Public on Sundays 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

During the months of July and August we are open by appointment only.


For schools and groups please call 661-834-1512 

Here in this garden, six million buttons are displayed. Each button remembers a single life murdered in Europe by the Nazi Regime

 This world is intended to be a beautiful, landscaped garden for all humanity. Each and every human being can be a part of creating this beautiful garden and making the word a better place.

Through acts of goodness and kindness, we will do our part in creating a better, safer, compassionate place for all to live in peace and harmony.

The Central Valley Holocaust Memorial, a site of remembrance, is the result of over a decade of planning and community work, including the collection and counting of six million buttons. 

Each button—different in size, shape, and color—represents an individual life lost during the Holocaust—a father, a mother; a daughter, a son; a tailor, a writer; a student, a teacher. Together, the buttons, displayed along a serene pathway outside the Chabad of Bakersfield, make tangible in some way the magnitude of loss during the Nazi era, offering students and surrounding communities a unique opportunity to remember those lost while better understanding the history of the Third Reich, Jewish identity, and California’s émigré past, which was heavily impacted by the arrival of prominent artists and intellectuals fleeing Nazi persecution. In a broader sense, the memorial will stand as a potent reminder of what is at stake in countering prejudice and persecution, hopefully inspiring us all to do and be better.

This memorial is the first site of such education and remembrance in the Central Valley. In 2012, it was envisioned by the California Holocaust Education and Research Center, founded by Cynthia Fisher and Thomas Simonian of Tulare, California. The Chabad of Bakersfield adopted and funded that vision in 2020. So many people of so many backgrounds and faiths contributed to its realization. The donated buttons were organized and counted by volunteers from local congregations and schools, including students, as well as women’s button groups from throughout the United States and Israel. In the future, this space will continue to bring people together by hosting Holocaust educators and their students; organizing lectures and workshops related to these histories; as well as any interested individuals from or visiting the area, with the memorial open to the public.

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