As communities prepare to celebrate the Festival of Lights, it’s time to mark your calendars for the Garden State’s upcoming Menorah lightings.
While it’s certainly not a competition, some towns go all out to make the holiday a memorable one for attendees of all ages. Let’s take a look at a few events that are sure to put you in the holiday spirit.
Chabad Jewish Center of Springfield presents one of the most festive and welcoming events of the season. The entire community is invited to the Grand Menorah Lighting at Veterans Memorial Park on Tuesday, Dec. 12 at 5:30 p.m. (Rain date: Wednesday, Dec. 13, same time.)
Rabbi Mendy Blesofsky called the Menorah lighting “a truly memorable event, where hundreds of people gather together to light the largest Menorah in metro west, New Jersey. With live music, a gelt drop, hot latkes, and donuts for all, it’s an event not to be missed,” he said.
Chabad of Union County, together with the Township of Scotch Plains and the Scotch Plains Business Association will be hosting a Menorah Lighting and Gelt Drop on Tuesday, Dec. 12 at 6 p.m. on the Scotch Plains Village Green. Thousand of chocolate coins will be dropped from on top of a fire truck for everyone to run and collect.
Fanwood hosts its Menorah lighting on Thursday, Dec. 14 at 6 p.m. at the Fanwood Train Station (North Avenue off Martine Avenue). In addition to lighting the giant Menorah, donuts, chocolate coins, and Hanukkah songs will delight the crowd. All are welcome to attend.
The Florham Park Annual Menorah Lighting will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 12th at 6 p.m. at the Gazebo at 111 Ridgedale Ave. The ceremony will be celebrated by spiritual leaders from Congregation Beth Torah of Florham Park, who will guide the community in lighting the Hanukkah candle with the assistance of the children from the Congregation’s Religious School. Rabbi Shalom Luben, of Chabad of SE Morris County, will also assist with the ceremony. Attendees can look forward to singing songs and sampling traditional latkes with friends, family, and neighbors.
Celebrate Hanukkah three nights in a row in Livingston at indoor and outdoor ceremonies. Visit Livingston Mall on Wednesday, Dec. 13 at 5 p.m. for the Menorah Lighting, which will take place on the upper level of Center Court.
The following evening, Thursday, Dec. 14 at 5:30 p.m., Rabbi Cliff Kulwin of Temple B’Nai Abraham will lead in lighting the candles at the Oval.
A community-wide celebration will be held Friday, Dec. 15 at 3:45 p.m. at Suburban Torah Synagogue. Following the Menorah candle lighting and Kabbalat Shabbat, Hanukkah dinner will be held. Adults: $36, Children (under 16): $25, Family maximum: $120. On Saturday, Dec. 16 at 7 p.m., the community is invited to get a taste of Israel in Livingston as Israeli vendors offer jewelry, jelly donuts and other items. At 7:30 p.m., a “Chanukah Concert Extravaganza” will feature Israel’s Kinor David Yeshiva Jazz Band. Suggested donation: $18.
The Red Bank community will gather on Wednesday, Dec. 13 at 6: p.m. at the Red Bank train station to celebrate the Festival of Lights at its annual Menorah Lighting, an evening attendees note is “bright and beautiful.”
Celebrate the first night of Hanukkah as the Village of Ridgewood hosts its fifth annual Menorah Lighting on Tuesday, Dec. 12 at 5:30 p.m. at Memorial Park in Van Neste Square. Enjoy music and refreshments.
Ridgewood neighbor Glen Rock will celebrate its first annual Hanukkah event by lighting the Menorah each of the eight nights of Hanukkah from Dec. 12 to 20 outside of Kilroy’s Wonder Market at 288 Road Rd. A special celebration, “Rock The Lights,” will be held Thursday Dec. 14 at 6 p.m. The public is invited to attend this inaugural event featuring live music, holiday food and children’s activities. The Chabad Jewish Center of Northwest Bergen County and the Glen Rock Jewish Center are co-sponsoring the evening.
This event if one the kids won’t want to miss! Free fidget dreidels will be given to the first 50 children. As if that weren’t enticing enough, Wyckoff’s Hanukkah celebration, which begins at 4:30 p.m on Tuesday, Dec. 12 at Wyckoff Town Hall (340 Franklin Ave.) includes refreshments, crafts, music, giveaways and costumed characters. The event is sponsored by Chabad Jewish Center.
Did we miss your event in our roundup? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.