NYC’s Best Chanukah Celebrations, From Latkes To The World’s Largest Menorah

December 24, 2016 6:00 AM

chabadmenorah e1481558283733 NYCs Best Chanukah Celebrations, From Latkes To The Worlds Largest Menorah

credit: Chabad in Brooklyn

This year, Chanukah begins on December 24, aka Christmas Eve. If you’re stumped for what to do, look no further than our list of the city’s best Chanukah celebrations, including an all-you-can-eat latke festival and the world’s largest menorah. Happy holidays! By Jessica Allen/Carly Petrone

credit: Wondergy Science Edutainment / Facebook

credit: Wondergy Science Edutainment / Facebook

Chanukah Festival

92nd St Y
1395 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10128
(212) 415-5500

More: Best Kosher Restaurants In NYC

Co-led by the Israeli Scouts-Tzofim, the annual Chanukah Festival at the 92nd Street Y gives you the chance to brush up on your Hebrew, build your own menorah, make holiday cards, watch Israeli folk dancing, and play games with like-minded souls. Scheduled performers include the Shababa Sparks Singing Mitzvah Troupe and the Wondergy—Cool Science Show. Sunday, December 18, 11 am, $18, tickets required.

credit: Garrett Ziegler

credit: Garrett Ziegler

Eighth Annual Latke Festival

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway
Brooklyn, NY 11238
(718) 638-5000

More: Best Latkes In NYC

Latkes, or potato pancakes, are eaten during Chanukah as a reminder of the eternal flame (an oil lamp) that endured the siege of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem in 165 BCE. The best latkes are both meaty and juicy, crispy and crunchy, doused in applesauce and sour cream, or gobbled plain. Figure out what kind you like best at the Eighth Annual Latke Festival, a benefit for The Sylvia Center, which tackles childhood obesity and encourages better eating habits among kids. Your ticket gets you all the latkes you care to eat. Monday, December 19, 6 to 9 pm, $70, tickets required.

credit: Chabad in Brooklyn

credit: Chabad in Brooklyn

World’s Largest Menorah

Grand Army Plaza
661 Warren Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(646) 298-9909

More: Best Neighborhoods For Holiday Lights

In 1984, Chabad of Park Slope put up a 32-foot menorah in Brooklyn’s Grand Army Plaza, near Prospect Park. Since then, the tradition has grown to include the entire community. A rabbi rides in the bucket of a Con Edison cherry-picker to give light to the grand menorah. For each of the holiday’s eight nights, religious and community leaders will be on hand, as will musicians and other performers. Saturday, December 24, through Saturday, December 31, see schedule for details, free.

credit: MatzoBall / Facebook

credit: MatzoBall / Facebook

The Ball 2016

230 Fifth
230 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10001
(212) 725-4300

More: Best Holiday-Themed Bars, Restaurants In NYC

OK, so while this event isn’t specifically focused on Chanukah, it does take place on the holiday’s first night. Called the “largest Jewish singles event in the nation,” the annual Matzo Ball includes three DJs on two dance floors at 230 Fifth. When you’re not chatting or dancing, you can admire the amazing views of the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building, or chill out in one of the “winter igloo party tents.” You’ll want to dress to impress! Note: the event is targeted to those aged 21 to 45. Saturday, December 24, 8 pm to 4 am, $30-50, tickets required.

credit: Garrett Ziegler

credit: Garrett Ziegler

Candlelight Tour and Soiree

Eldridge Street Synagogue
Museum at Eldridge Street
12 Eldridge Street
New York, NY 10002
(212) 219-0888

Even if you’ve been to the Eldridge Street Synagogue, a historic synagogue in Chinatown, you’ve probably never seen it quite like this. To celebrate the fourth night of Chanukah, the synagogue will re-create their interior. Along with soaking up the atmosphere and lighting the menorah, you’ll be given a brief tour of some of the structure’s highlights, then treated to latkes and wine. The synagogue has lots of other events planned for the Festival of Lights, including a hot cider walking tour and holiday-inspired scavenger hunt. Tuesday, December 27, 7 to 9 pm, $30, tickets required.

(credit: Children's Museum of Manhattan)

(credit: Children’s Museum of Manhattan)

Children’s Museum of Manhattan

212 W. 83rd St.
New York, NY
http://cmom.org

More: NYC’s Best Family-Friendly Holiday Events

Stop by the Children’s Museum of Manhattan on Dec. 27 and Dec. 29 and enjoy two fun-filled days of Chanukah celebrations. Start out your Wednesday from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. by making a Chanukah Calendar and designing a banner with pockets to store your eight tiny Chanukah treasures. It’s great for all ages and also available on Thursday, Dec. 29 from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Suitable for ages 6 and up, registration required. See website for more details.

The Trump Lasker Rink in Central Park. (Credit: Jim Henderson via Wikipedia; Public Domain)

The Trump Lasker Rink in Central Park. (Credit: Jim Henderson via Wikipedia; Public Domain)

Chanukah on Ice

Lasker Rink In Central Park
830 Fifth Ave.
New York, NY

More: NYC’s 5 Best Ice Skating Rinks

Ice skate to the sounds of live music and other holiday festivities at the Lasker Rink in Central Park on Dec. 27.  From 4 p.m. – 7 p.m., you can check out the lighting of the giant ice menorah and snack on some Chanukah treats. Make sure to RSVP because this event is sure to sell out. Tickets are $28 with skate rental, $20 without. Learn more here.

(credit: Jewish Museum)

(credit: Jewish Museum)

Hanukkah Family Day at the Jewish Museum

1109 5th Ave.
New York, NY

Looking for something creative to do this Chanukah? Bring the kiddos over to the Jewish Museum on Dec. 18 from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. for their annual “Hanukkah Family Day.” There will be drop-in art workshops, fabric painting design, dreidel decorating, and more. Learn more here.

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Jessica Allen is A New York City writer.

Carly Petrone is a freelance writer living in New York City.

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