Chabad's Community Menorahs “Light up the Night”

| 22 Feb 2012 | 03:24

Monroe - Many Orange County residents braved cold, windy weather to “Light up the Night” with Chabad of Orange County’s community menorah lightings around Orange County. The events included the lighting of large menorahs, Chanukah treats such as latkes, chocolate “gelt” (gold-wrapped chocolate coins) and doughnuts, dreidels, dignitaries, hot cocoa and crafts for kids. At each lighting, Rabbi Pesach Burston explained the significance of the presence and support of the local government at festivities. “It was not so long ago when various governments forbade Jews to practice their heritage, let alone in public. In fact, this is the reason behind the Hanukkah tradition of the dreidel (spinning tops): The Greek oppressors outlawed Torah schools, so children would study in the forests, in hiding. When they saw a police officer approaching, the children would start playing with dreidels, to hide their learning from the officers. “Thus,” Burston added, “having the support and presence of government officials at a public menorah lighting is, itself, part of the Chanukah miracle.”