The Festival Of Lights, Israeli-style


In Israel, where Chanukah in a Christmas-less society is a minor holiday, it’s still a major presence.
First, there’s the sufganiyot. That’s Hebrew for doughnuts.

Photo by Getty Images

On Chanukah, Spinning Into The Future

Special to The Jewish Week

As we celebrate Chanukah 5771, we also begin to wind up the first decade of the 21st century, and what a decade it has been. America went to war and remains at war to this day. Israel and the Palestinians are still unable to make peace. The economy, both at home and in most of the developed world, is shaky, with most of us still wondering exactly how close we came to another Great Depression, and some still waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Mixed Feelings About MixedBlessing

 Do people still send Christmas and Chanukah cards?

The last time I was organized enough to sit down with a stack of envelopes, stamps and list of addresses, was in 1998, when I was sending out wedding invitations. I’m sure that were my lapsed Catholic hubby and I to marry now, we’d probably notify the guests via Evite.

Midnight At Rachel's Tomb: Kind Of A Hush About Islamic Claim That Kever Rachel & Kotel Are Now Mosques


If you needed any more evidence that the Jewish left is really advocating surrender to the Palestinians instead of peace with the Palestinians, check out the reaction of the Jewish left to the Palestinian claim that Rachel's Tomb and the Kotel (Western Wall) are really mosques.

There's been almost no reaction at all.

Sparks Of Life: Chanukah 5771

Cool gifts, healthy olive oil, and more.

Staff Writer

Cool gifts, healthy olive oil, and more.

Jhonson Augustin’s tree of life, combine art and spirituality.

'Forever Young' Forever And 'In The Mixis'

Have I unfairly smeared the song “Forever Young”?

Adam Kotok has directed my attention to a lovely Hebrew cover of the song (video embedded below) done by his wife Dafna Israel-Kotok, the musician who saved my daughter’s Israel-themed birthday party. In addition to performing at parties, Dafna runs some very cool all-in-Hebrew children’s music classes called Shir Fun.

I like her “Tamid Tzair,” although it would be great if the video featured a more racially/ethnically diverse selection of families.

Help! I've Assimilated And I Can't Get Up!

Perhaps at no time more than Halloween am I struck by the huge chasm between Orthodox/traditional Conservative Jews and the rest of us.

Among most of my Jewish family and friends, there has never been even a question of whether or not to join other Americans in dressing up in costume, carving a jack-o-lantern and trick-or-treating. Halloween is a fun holiday and of course we partake.

Can I Interest You In Chanukah (Surveys)?

Lamenting the increasingly premature arrival of all-things-Christmas is a favorite American (especially American Jewish) pastime.

However, this year, with the first night of Chanukah on Wednesday, Dec. 1 (ack — just four and a half weeks away!) we Jews can be credited with ushering in the holiday season early this year.

The Festival of Lite

Editorial Intern

Chanukah foods don’t exactly bring healthy images to mind. In Israel, this time of year every bakery in town is serving up trays and trays of sufganiyot, doughnuts with your choice of jelly, caramel or even chocolate filling.
But as people worry about their waistlines and calorie counts, indulging in a fried delicacy for eight nights may not be the best idea.

This Chanukah, you can choose healthier baked doughnut “muffins,” left, or the full-fat fried version, above.

Long Island Lights Up

Staff Writer
Menorahs, latkes and dreidels — the staples of Chanukah — were in abundance this week as the Festival of Lights was celebrated in homes, synagogues and public spaces. Preschoolers at the Sid Jacobson JCC in East Hills (at right, top) prepared for the holiday by making menorahs and a giant dreidel. And the JCC called upon the Roslyn Highlands Fire Department for help in lighting its 18-foot menorah, which sits on the JCC’s front lawn at 300 Forest Drive and is said to be the largest freestanding menorah on the Island.
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