STAR-BULLETIN / DECEMBER 2002
Israel Chudaitov assisted Gov. Linda Lingle during a menorah lighting ceremony marking the Hanukkah season at Waikiki Gateway park.
Menorah lighting will lead Hanukkah events
Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, will begin next weekend with a public lamp-lighting ceremony and festive events in the Jewish community.
Gov. Linda Lingle is expected to participate in the public menorah lighting at 8 p.m. Dec. 16 at Waikiki Gateway Park, according to the sponsoring organization, Chabad of Hawaii. In addition to the traditional eight-candle, 18-foot menorah, Chabad will display a giant balloon menorah.
The tradition of adding a new light each night of the eight-day Hanukkah holiday is observed by Jewish families in their homes.
Chabad of Hawaii will hold its Hanukkah party at 5 p.m. Dec. 17 at the Ala Moana Hotel, 410 Atkinson Drive, in the second-floor meeting rooms. It will feature a buffet dinner and music by a Hasidic band. Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for children 12 and younger. No reservations are required.
Party entertainment will feature an olive press demonstration. Audience members will participate in making olive oil, the traditional fuel for lamps.
The Temple Emanu-El congregation will celebrate the holiday Dec. 22 at the synagogue at 2550 Pali Highway. The Seudat Shabbat and Hanukkah observance will begin at 6 p.m. Reservations are required for the dinner, which will feature latkes, traditional potato pancakes. For adult members, the cost is $5 and a batch of latkes; for nonmembers, $10 and a batch of latkes. Participants are asked to bring gift cards from fast food restaurants or movie theaters to benefit homeless families in the Family Promise program. Make reservations by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
The menorah-lighting ritual commemorates a miraculous event in Judea in 165 B.C. Conquerors had defiled the Hebrew Temple in Jerusalem with pagan practices. When Jewish fighters led by Judah Maccabee reclaimed the temple and wanted to rekindle the menorah, only a small flask of consecrated lamp oil remained untainted. Although it was only enough fuel for one day, the flame lasted for all eight days of the dedication of the temple.
The holiday is celebrated as a triumph of freedom from religious intolerance and oppression.