OCEANSIDE — More than 100 gathered at the Civic Center Plaza to celebrate Hanukkah and light the 20-foot community menorah on Dec. 5. The outdoor celebration included an inflatable slide, holiday crafts and goodies to eat.
“Every time we celebrate is new,” Rabbi Barach Greenberg, director of the Chabad Jewish Center, said. “Every day is new. It’s the excitement of bringing light to what we’re doing when we’re doing good things.”
The Hanukkah celebration was an opportunity to look at the good in everything. Even the recent fires in Israel can be looked at as an event that united 30 countries in support of Israel,” Rabbi Barach Greenberg said.
“We need to be tolerant of other people and add light to the world,” Rabbi Moshe Greenberg, of Chabad Jewish Center, said. “May the latkes and donuts have no effect on our cholesterol,” he added, on a lighter note. Children from the Chabad Jewish Center sang, then Rabbi Barach Greenberg, Gordan Berman, of the Chabad Jewish Center and Councilman Gary Felien climbed on a mechanized lift and lit the candles on the top of the tall menorah. The flame from the menorah was passed from person to person to light their own candles.
After the menorah lighting children resumed coloring cookies, creating colored sand dreidels, and bouncing down the inflatable slide as the crowd continued to visit and celebrate.
This is the third year for the annual community Hanukkah celebration. The giant menorah will remain in the Civic Center Plaza through the holiday season.