This year the Jewish holiday Hanukkah (also known as Chanukah or the Festival of Lights) which is an eight day and night celebration began on December 8 and ends on December 16. There are many ways to commemorate with events in the area so set up your menorah or candelabra and observe the holiday with your family at one of the following kid friendly activities.
Thursday December 14 enjoy a PJ library story time from 4-5 pm in the Chase Family Gallery at the Mandell JCC in West Hartford. Also at the Mandell JCC is the first annual Fifth Night Chanukah Party and charitable gift giving celebration benefiting the Jewish Family Services on Wednesday December 12 from 5:30-6:30 pm. It’s a fun and simple way to participate in “tzedakah” by giving one night of Chanukah gifts to children in need. There will also be a candle lighting, dessert and crafts.
On December 12 attend the Fifth Night in the Valley for families featuring songs, crafts, and cupcakes. They are asking for people to bring one unwrapped gift for a child in need. This event is located in Avon at the Helen and Harry Gray Cancer Center from 6-7 pm.
The Emanuel Synagogue in West Hartford is hosting a Hanukkah Holiday dinner on Friday December 14 at 6 pm. They are also having a Latkes and Lollipops Celebration for the young ones on Saturday December 15 from 4:15-7 pm. They will be dedicating the new Early Childhood Center as well as celebrating Hanukkah with many fun activities, crafts, dinner and music.
On Thursday December 13 the students of the Bess and Paul Sigel Hebrew Academy in Bloomfield will be presenting “Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblin” and “The Eight Middot of Success”. A menorah and spaghetti dinner will start the event at 5:30 pm followed by the presentation and musical performance at 6:30 pm. Tickets are $15 per person, $10 for grades K-4 and $5 for children under 5.
The Beth El Temple in West Hartford will be having an intergenerational Friday night service led by Cantor Joseph Ness, with the Beth El Adult and Children’s Choirs. They will be exploring the Chanukkah melodies and hors d’oeuvres will be served.
On Saturday December 16 there will be a Chanukkah Party Bus Scavenger Hunt open to teens grades 6-12, hosted by the Jewish Teen Learning Connection of West Hartford, BBYO and Hebrew High School of New England. It starts with a havdallah service at 6:30 pm followed by drinks, snacks and a movie on board bus. The teens will return at 10 pm.