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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Students celebrate Hanukkah’s first night

Students celebrated the first night of Hanukkah by lighting a 12-foot menorah on the UA Mall on Wednesday night.

About 100 students and community members attended the lighting ceremony hosted by the Chabad Jewish Student Center. The center has hosted the event for the past six years.

“”We want to be able to give students the opportunity to celebrate Hanukkah and participate in the lighting ceremony,”” said Rabbi Yossi Winner, co-director of the Chabad Jewish Student Center.

Winner recounted the story of Hanukkah before lighting the menorah. Students recited traditional blessings and ate traditional Hanukkah foods like jelly donuts and latkes.

Hanukkah falls between late November and late December each year. Many students cannot celebrate the holiday with their families when it falls during the semester.

“”(Last year) we were able to go home for at least one night to celebrate with our families,”” said psychology sophomore Adrianna Laufer. “”The timing is really just horrible.””

Laufer said her Hanukkah celebration on campus is much more subdued than her family’s traditions.

“”Especially when you’re in the dorms,”” Laufer said. “”You can’t light candles. You can’t get the full effect of it when you’re away.””

The lighting ceremony seeks to unite Jewish students for the holiday.

“”I like being out here with everybody and supporting the Jewish community,”” said creative writing sophomore Jasmine Glick.

The prominence of the menorah on the Mall also helps educate non-Jewish students, Winner said.

“”It’s a message for all people,”” he said. “”It’s a vision and it’s a beautiful symbol for all mankind.””

The menorah will remain on the Mall for all eight nights of Hanukkah. The center will continue lighting ceremonies each night at locations around campus.

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