I am the luckiest person in the world. I found a cute Jewish boy to be my boyfriend/roommate and now I get to celebrate TWO holidays every December. Not to mention one of these holidays is eight days long which means a full week of gifts, fried food and happiness.
It’s no secret that Christmas dominates Hanukkah in terms of shopping and events. But just because red and green are covering every inch of the mall, doesn’t mean that cool Hanukkah events aren’t happening.
In fact, here are 6 ways for Charlotteans to celebrate Hanukkah this holiday season:
1. Go to a menorah lighting
There’s a few this year but the two biggest lightings are at SouthPark Mall (December 12th, 5pm) and Stonecrest (December 13th, 5pm) where there will be a 9-foot chocolate menorah lighting. This is very confusing to me. Won’t the chocolate melt? Can I eat the chocolate? I have so many questions.
2. Shop at Dillard’s
Hadassah Charlotte is hosting a last-minute Hanukkah shopping event at Dillard’s on December 18th from 2:30 to 9pm. The best part? You’ll receive 20% off most items as well as a free makeover, gift-wrapping and snacks.
3. Celebrate Hanukkah with the Hornets
Watch the Hornets take on the Lakers on Jewish Community Night, December 9th, 7pm. Tickets include a free Charlotte Hornets Kippah and this also happens to be Frank Kaminsky Stormtrooper bobble head night. A portion of all proceeds go towards Jewish Family Services.
4. Dance at Temple Israel
Join the Hanukkah Celebration and Dance on December 16th, 6pm at Temple Israel. There will be Havdallah, dinner, dancing, raffles and kid’s games.
5. Eat fried chicken
Temple Beth El is hosting their 5th annual Southern Fried Chanukah party (December 16th, 5pm) with raffles, games and plenty of fried foods.
6. Drink and play dreidel
Chabad Young Professionals has rented out none other than the infamous Oak Room for their Drinks + Dreidels party (December 14th, 7:30pm). There will be a very competitive dreidel tournament, open bar, menorah lighting and, my favorite, a donut bar. Plus, you’ll get to hang out with me which is just the icing on the latke.
(Bonus!) 7. Eat dinner at Great Wall with every other Jewish Charlottean on Christmas Day.
My game plan always includes:
1. Chicken noodle soup
2. Steamed dumplings
3. Sesame chicken. Oh, and a few bowls of those crunchy noodles dipped in duck sauce.