The Festival of Lights is going to look a little different this year, but organizations around Philadelphia are working hard to bring a little warmth to everyone who’s celebrating. Upside down as the world may seem, latkes still fry in oil and dreidels still have four sides.
Check out our city’s wide variety of Chanukah events, many of which will be accessible via Zoom.
A Festival of Light & Hope: Music & Dance From Around the World
Nashirah, the Jewish Chorale of Greater Philadelphia, will offer a full day of online activities. The international festival of music, yoga and dance performances will be beamed into your living room via Vimeo and Zoom, and will feature performers from Philadelphia and beyond. There will be Yiddish tango music, a Chanukah-focused lecture, a social hour with a Chanukah sing-along and much more. Whole day ($36) and single event ($0-12) tickets are available. Details can be found at nashirah.org/virtual-festival-2020. Dec. 6, 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Latke Love From Israel
Subscribers to IsraeliBox, a service that provides once-a-month packages of Israeli products, may already be familiar with Israeli chefs and entrepreneurs Ayelet Venezia and Maya Balaban. For the rest of us, the Kaiserman JCC will host a Zoom-based latke-making demonstration led by Venezia and Balaban. Recipes will be provided in advance for those who want to cook along. General admission is $36, and registration can be found at phillyjcc.com/latkelove. Dec. 6, 10 a.m.
At the South Philadelphia Shtiebel’s outdoor space, participants will be invited to “plant” miracles into a Miracle Garden, an inspirational outdoor art installation. One pod will be allowed in the Miracle Garden at a time, and time can be reserved at southphiladelphiashtiebel.org. Times available between Dec. 10-16.
Bucks County Kehillah Community Chanukah Celebration
Co-sponsored by Temple Judea of Doylestown, the Clergy Council and jkidphilly, this Bucks County Kehillah celebration will take place on Zoom. There will be Chanukah tales, joyous music, crafts, dance and candlelighting. The registration link can be found on the Bucks County Kehillah’s Facebook page, and questions can be sent to Carrie Matez at firstname.lastname@example.org. Dec. 13, 3-4 p.m.
Joy in Resistance
Kol Tzedek Synagogue’s annual Chanukah party, adapted for Zoom, is built around the idea that joy in the face of adversity is a form of resistance. With that in mind, get ready to do a whole lot of resisting; there will be Chanukah trivia, a “Great Jewish Bake Off,” a dance-off, singing and much more. This year’s party will serve as a fundraiser for YEAH Philly. Registration can be found at koltzedek.org, and there is a suggested donation of $18-$180 per family, though no one will be turned away. Dec. 13, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Center City Kehillah Chanukah Candle Lighting Online
Center City Kehillah will host a short online program on the fifth night of Chanukah, where participants will be able to light candles together in a group ceremony, via Zoom. If you’re short on candles, fear not: On Dec. 9, anyone who wishes can pick up Chanukah goody bags with treats and all the wax’n’wicks that you need, at Makom Community (noon-2 p.m.), B’nai Abraham Chabad (noon-2 p.m.) or Julian Abele Park (3-5 p.m.). Dec. 14, 5:30-6 p.m.
A Magical Family Chanukah Celebration
The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia and jkidphilly will host an online celebration for this year’s Festival of Lights. Participants will be treated to a magic show, Chanukah songs and Chanukah bingo before a group candlelighting ceremony. Registration information can be found at the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia’s Facebook page; bingo cards and prayer booklets will be available via digital download after registration. Dec. 15, 5:30-6:15 p.m.
Tribe 12 hosts a monthly Quizzo game, and December’s iteration will be Chanukah themed. The winning team will receive a virtual gift card to the restaurant of its choice, and accessibility accommodations (sign language, live captioning, etc.) will be made available. Email email@example.com with any questions, and register at bit.ly/HanukkahQuizzo. Dec. 15, 8-9:30 p.m.
Don’t Let The Light Go Out
In lieu of the traditional in-person gala, Aish Chaim’s annual gathering will be a Zoom-based Chanukah celebration. Many sponsorship options are available for those who wish to contribute, and all come with a box of Chanukah necessaries and a sandwich to be picked up on the day of the event. Registration can be found at aishchaim.com. Dec. 17, 6 p.m. l