Who’s the Tops?

Soon, the floor at Temple Emanuel will turn into a sea of dreidels as the Cherry Hill, N.J., synagogue attempts to break the world record for the number of them spinning at the same time. The current record stands at 535 people simultaneously spinning dreidels, a feat accomplished by the University of Maryland Hillel in 1999.

"The kids at the congregation are really excited about it," said Rabbi Deborah Bodin Cohen, who's organizing the event on Dec. 18.

The Guinness Book of Records will not have a representative at the synagogue, so Temple Emanuel is trying to get various community leaders, such as city council members, to serve as witnesses to the feat. The congregation plans to send a video of the attempt to Guinness officials.

Since the rules state that each participant can only spin one dreidel – and that each dreidel must spin for at least 10 seconds – Cohen has been trying to make sure that their dreidels will meet the specifications.

"We want to see which ones are the easiest and spin the longest," she said. "A toy manufacturer says that his dreidel spins for 20 seconds. We're waiting for a sample."

Cohen is hoping this challenge will be a welcome change to the normal holiday lineup.

"It should help the congregation celebrate the holiday in a different way," said the rabbi.



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