Menorah lightings planned worldwide for first night of Hanukkah

Mendel left Rabbi Bentzi and Levi Shemtov spin dreidels in anticipation of the start of Hanukkah on Tuesday Dec. 12

The festival of Hanukkah celebrates the 2nd century BCE victory of the Maccabess, a small band of faithful Jews, and their victory over the Greek-Syrian oppressors in their struggle for religious freedom in the Land of Israel.

"Looking at the menorah, it reminds us to search for that uncontaminated part inside us all", Greenberg said. On each night, a lighted candle is added to the candelabrum over which prayers are recited.

The south Lee County Chabad purchased the nine-foot menorah - to replace their former eight-foot menorah - from a company in the northern U.S, Greenberg said.

No matter how our Jewish citizens celebrate the holiday, we wish each of them a "Happy Hanukkah", and a safe and joyous season.

Hanukkah is a family celebration.

"The larger it is, the more attention it attracts", Greenberg said.

The Estero menorah, like its counterparts throughout the world, has eight holders for candles or oil.

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The menorah is so big that the Republican governor, other state leaders and Rabbi Rachmiel Liberman will have to be hoisted in a scissor lift to light it.

"It's the idea of increasing light, getting rid of all negative things around of us", he said.

Why do Jews light candles during Hanukkah?

The menorah is now on display outside the movie theater at Coconut Point, but on Sunday it will be part of the Chabad of Bonita Springs and Estero's revamped Hanukkah celebration. There will be latkes and fried donuts after in the legislative building.

Rabbi David Weis, of Beth Israel Synagogue in Northfield, said, "Hanukkah comes at the darkest time of the year".

There also will be crafts for children, rides for all ages and a photo opportunity at a replica of the Western Wall. Jewish festivals and traditions were revered and observed by the Jews as well as the other communities before the large-scale migration of the Jews from Kochi in the 1950s. "Most families will enjoy latkes, which are cooked in oil, with applesauce and sour cream and jelly doughnuts that are also cooked in oil", Weis said.

"To me, Hanukkah is about sharing our faith with others without competing with others, but rather respecting the dignity of our differences and enjoying the benefit of those differences", Parnes said. This annual event includes theatre, music, street carnivals, and free admission to numerous city's most famous sites, such as the Israel Museum (that's where the Dead Sea Scrolls are) and the Tower of David.

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