Celebrating Hanukkah in Naperville

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Chabad of Naperville

Chabad of Naperville’s plans to celebrate Hanukkah took off over the weekend. The center held a family fun day for the holiday, which included a chocolate gelt helicopter drop for kids to get their hands on some sweet coins. The event also included DIY menorah making, traditional food like latkes, and lighting the final candle on the menorah.

“It represents our hope and our resilience and our conviction to continue to spread our light,” said Tzvi Tornek, the youth director at Chabad of Naperville. “And we should all know that our light no matter how insignificant you think it is and there’s so much darkness how can we possibly influence our surroundings? But you never know what you can do.” Later that day, around 15 cars lit up Downtown Naperville to cap off the eight-day celebration with a menorah car parade.

Congregation Beth Shalom

One group also keeping that spark alive in the young generation is Congregation Beth Shalom. “Hanukkah, like all Judaism, gets passed on from generation to generation,” said Marc Rudolph, a rabbi at Congregation Beth Shalom. “We have a tradition, a religion that goes back over 3,000 years and the only way to continue that religion is to teach our children.”

On Sunday, their youngest learners celebrated the Festival of Lights at Sunday school. Kindergarten students recited prayers, played dreidel, and shared how they celebrate the holiday.

Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.