From candle lighting and prayer to concerts and laser light shows, the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia ensured a memorable Hanukkah for all. Throughout the holiday, the Jewish Federation’s various departments, including the neighborhood Kehillot, NextGen and the Jewish Community Relations Council, hosted a number of events to bring the community together and celebrate the Festival of Lights.
“It was deeply moving to see how people of all different demographics and backgrounds turned out - in frigid temperatures, no less - to support one another and the community as a whole,” said Max Moline, the Jewish Federation’s Director of Community Development. “Collectively, the Greater Philadelphia Jewish community showed once again that we are all committed to igniting and carrying the light.”
Overall, more than 1,000 community members participated in the Hanukkah programs hosted by the Kehillot, the Jewish Federation's grassroots effort to build and sustain our vibrant communities throughout Greater Philadelphia.
“We are so thrilled that we had the chance to engage so many members of our Jewish community in a celebration of this joyous holiday,” Moline continued. “The hard work of our dedicated professional team was rewarded by consistently impressive turnouts, and there is no greater feeling than seeing that hard work lead to such wonderful success.”
Old York Road Kehillah
On December 17, the Old York Road Kehillah hosted a Hanukkah laser light show. Nearly 460 people came out to see the dazzling show, presented by Wondergy, at Congregation Beth Sholom.
The Buxmont Kehillah hosted an event at the Horsham Center for Jewish Life on December 18, where around 150 community members and residents celebrated the first night of Hanukkah with singing, stories and candle lighting. The children's choir of Darchei Noam synagogue, along with Hazzan Arlyne Unger, gave a special performance of Jewish and Hanukkah themed songs. Mary, Mother of the Redeemer Catholic School basketball team also attended and handed out goody bags at the end of the program.
Jewish Community Relations Council
Boathouse Row was lit up in blue and white lights for Hanukkah's first night on December 18. The event, which was livestreamed so all could enjoy, was organized by the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia's Jewish Community Relations Council in partnership with the Mayor's Office of Public Engagement in partnership with Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, and the Office of the City Representative.
Bucks County Kehillah
More than 160 people welcomed the second night of Hanukkah with the Bucks County Kehillah at Shady Brook Farm on December 19. The evening was filled with crafts, candle lighting, music and donuts.
Lower Merion Kehillah
The Lower Merion Kehillah brought in Hanukkah at the Narberth train station on December 19. Around 50 people gathered to celebrate with blessings, songs, sufganiyot (jelly donuts).
Jewish Community Relations Council
Community members came together at the Gladwyne Presbyterian Church on December 19 for an impactful evening of interfaith conversation and discussion around rising antisemitism in America. Hosted in partnership with the Jewish Federation’s Jewish Community Relations Council, the program was led by Jewish and other faith leaders.
Center City Kehillah
The Center City Kehillah commemorated the third night of Hanukkah with a joyous and meaningful candle lighting at Rittenhouse Square Park. The event brought out more than 100 people on December 20. After the candle lighting, the Jewish Federation’s NextGen and other young professional groups met for drinks at Misconduct.
On December 21, the Northeast Kehillah hosted an event at House of Kosher with over 125 members of the community. Participants enjoyed an evening of candle lighting, latkes, donuts and music.
Nearly 150 people danced the night away at the One Crazy Night: Hanukkah Fest on December 22 at World Cafe Live. Hosted by The Chevra, in partnership with the Jewish Federation’s NextGen group and other young Jewish professional organizations, the event included live music, sufganiyot (jelly donuts) and candle lighting.
Want to get involved in Jewish life within your community? Contact Max Moline, Director of Community Development, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215.832.0803.