Mega Hanukkah Celebration Takes Place In Naperville

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Chabad of Naperville celebrated the start of Hannukah with a mega celebration on Sunday.

Helicopter Gelt Drop

The first big event of the day, back by popular demand after debuting last year, came from the sky.

“One of the exciting events was a helicopter that dropped chocolate gelt, chocolate coins which traditionally we eat chocolate coins on Hanukkah and we drop them from a helicopter, give it extra excitement for the kids,” said Rabbi Tzvi Tornek.

After everyone warmed up with some hot chocolate and apple cider, it was time to put menorahs on top of visitors’ cars to parade through town.

Giant Menorah Lighting

The amphitheater in Downtown Naperville was the stopping point, and the spot where Rabbi Mendy Goldstein would light the giant menorah.

“The menorah represents the holiday of Hannukah, the menorah or something that was kindled in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. And over 2,000 years ago, this, the freedom of lighting, the menorah was attempted to be taken away from the Jewish people, and there was a miracle that they were able to be victorious over this large army. And the miracle was that they kindle the menorah with oil. But the problem was they didn’t have enough oil to kindle the menorah. They only had enough oil for one night. And there was a miracle and it lasted for eight nights,” said Rabbi Mendy Goldstein.

Celebrating Hanukkah

Once the menorah was lit, the celebrations got underway with singing and dancing.

“I just want to say for those that are celebrating, Happy Hanukkah, and those that are not celebrating Hanukkah, this is the message of Hanukkah it’s something which is really beautiful for everybody to take. To realize that just light one candle if you’re going through a challenge or a little bit of a darkness in your life, light one little candle and light is contagious and hopefully it will light up your life,” said Goldstein.

Hanukkah lasts until December 26.

Naperville News 17’s Anthony Yench reports.

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