Celebrate Hanukkah with these traditional foods

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"I get to go up in the lift every year and look down at the crowd and see everybody just waiting for the light to be lit and that anticipation and that collective yearning, I would call it, to see the menorah get lit", he said.

Despite gray skies and rain, Rabbi Yacov Borenstein observed the first night of Hanukkah by at a Menorah lighting on Tuesday afternoon in downtown Poughkeepsie. So, if I love Hanukkah and I love Christmas, how did I come to reject Chrismukkah? The most sacred day on the Jewish calendar is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. But its timing is ideal as a means of community inclusion.

"I celebrate Christmas but I attend the lightings. We hope that those observing the holiday here, in Israel, and around the world have a wonderful holiday", the U.S. president said.

Freeman appreciates the sense of inclusion that's created by the menorah display.

With up to 5,000 members, the Jewish community in Bulgaria is a rather small minority, but a very active one. Opening up avenues for conversation is a good thing-inviting people to ask questions.

Menorahs are being lit in public spaces for Hanukkah all across the globe.

Blessings are typically recited during the candle lighting ceremony each night of Hanukkah. Despite the pressure to smush everything together into one large wintery mega holiday, we will try our best to teach them about the meaning and importance of each holiday. But my husband is not. "We start with one on the first day and add a candle each day, and on the eighth night we have a total of eight".

"It made a lot of Jewish kids from more assimilated backgrounds have their own holiday".

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But the family enjoyed both holidays.

We wish a happy Hanukkah to all in our community who are observing the festival. "Once we ignite it, it will last much longer than we think".

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In the United States, the holiday has evolved into a time for giving gifts to children and friends, in some ways a Jewish alternative to Christmas.

Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem that had been defiled after the Maccabean Revolt. The Greeks had destroyed oil the used for lighting candles. Miraculously, the oil burned for eight days. That was exactly the length of time needed to procure more oil. The eight-day holiday begins at sundown Tuesday. Emperor Antiochus decreed that to be Jewish was a capital offense. A carving on the Arch of Titus, erected in 82 A.D. and still standing in Rome, depicts the "Spoils of the Temple", including that 6-armed solid gold menorah.

Also known as Chanukah, the festival's origins date back to the second century B.C. According to the legend, Jews revolted against the Greek-Syrians, rebelling against a king who had outlawed the Jewish religion and ordered the Jews to worship Greek gods.

That's something else we can celebrate this Hanukkah, though we can't take it for granted given the turbulent times in which we live and the strengthening of intolerant voices.

Chabad Jewish Center of Northern Colorado, 1220G West Elizabeth Street, Fort Collins, is having a Community Hanukkah Party and Giant Menorah Lighting on Sunday, December 25, at 4:00 p.m.

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