Hanukkah 2015: Simple Ways to Celebrate

Tonight is the fifth night of Hanukkah, a midwinter holiday that celebrates the victory of the Maccabees over the Syrians in the battle to preserve their religious and cultural identity. Today, it is celebrated with friends and family to strengthen the bonds of culture and community, bring light to the darkest part of the year, and to have a good time.

  • Lighting the menorah is the mostcandles-897776_640 important element of Hanukkah. Although electric ones are sometimes used as extra decorations, the true menorah is lit after sunset with candles or oil to symbolize the menorah in the Maccabean temple. When it is lit, special prayers are said and hymns are sung, and the light is generally enjoyed for half an hour.potato-pancake-544684_640
  • Because of the significance of oil in the Hanukkah story, fried food such as latkes and doughnuts are usually served. A typical Hanukkah meal consists of a beef brisket served with Challah and latkes with a side of either apple sauceĀ or sour cream.
  • Since winter is an idea time for celebration, Hanukkah parties have become very popular. Dreidel is a popular party game that is often played for chocolate gelt. Pairing the typical fried foods with a cup of hot cocoa and marshmallows (or wine) is a great way to warm up cold guests.
  • Giving small gifts on each of the nightschocolate-coins-566201_640 is another common tradition, especially for children. Popular gifts are small toys, candy, or articles of clothing. My aunt would often get a shirt the first night, socks the next, and by the end of Hanukkah she would have a whole outfit!

Happy Hanukkah!

Posted December 10th, 2015 by Mady
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One Response to “Hanukkah 2015: Simple Ways to Celebrate”

Barb Byer On December 23rd, 2015

In 2016, Christmas Eve and the first night of Hanukkah are the same night. If you add in Adam’s birthday, that’s a lot of celebrating!

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