11 Great Hanukkah Events For The Whole Family

Photo by chabadparkslope.com

Hanukkah’s first night falls on December 24th this year, and there are eight nights to celebrate the festival of lights. However, there are celebrations and parties going on all month. From candle lightings to ice skating, there are plenty of fun events for the whole family!

December 11

Hanukkah Community Art Festival at Hannah Senesh Community Day School


Channel your inner artist with this fantastic arts and crafts afternoon. Art workshops are for children ages 2-10, and include edible chocolate dreidel making, an oil press, and a clay workshop! There will be instructors and artists from the neighborhood, as well as from Jewish camps in the area. Just $5, register ahead of time or pay at the door.

December 11 through January 1

Soil to Oil Workshop at The Jewish Children’s Museum

Workshop times vary

Taking place on December Sundays until Hanukkah begins, then every night of Hanukkah, Soil to Oil is an informative workshop on how we get oil from olives. For 30 minutes, kids will get to press, squeeze, and have fun with olives in a hands-on and interactive way. For the big finale, the kids get to light a menorah using their freshly made oil! $13 for adults and children, $10 for seniors.

December 18

Chanukkah Festival at 92nd Street Y


This celebration of the holiday will feature both Hebrew and English activities, which will be co-led by the Israeli Scouts-Tzofim. Fun times will include menorah building, edible dreidels, and the 92Y’s famous holiday game room! Don’t miss the performances by The Shababa Sparks, Cool Science Show, and a special guest! Tickets begin at $18.

Latkepalooza! at The Museum of Jewish Heritage


Everyone loves latkes! Get started on celebrating with the whole family with this great day of food, music, and activities, especially for ages 3-10. Free for children and grandchildren of members of the MJH, $10 otherwise.

Chanukah Celebration at West End Synagogue


Don’t miss the party at West End Synagogue that features fun for the whole family. There will be candle and cookie making, arts and crafts, and a singalong for the kids, dreidel games and a social justice workshop for the teens, and a study session with Rabbi Margolius for mom and dad! Make sure you catch the performance by the renowned West End Synagogue Choir.

Hanukkah Family Day at The Jewish Museum


The Jewish Museum is throwing a jam-packed day of Hanukkah fun for ages 3 and up. Make hand-printed Hanukkah cards to send out to family and friends, create fantastic and innovative dreidels, and jam out with Shira Kline as she performs a musical re-enactment of the Hanukkah story. Attendance is free with museum admission.

Hanukkah Playhouse and Book Fair at The Kaufman Music Center


Follow the Broadway Playhouse cast as they take you on a rousing trip through the celebration of Hanukkah, filled with songs and music. Some children in the audience will even be part of the show! This year’s show will feature the premiere of a musical adaptation of In The Month of Kislev, by Nina Jaffe. Before the show begins at 1pm, make sure you check out the book fair – children can play with the storytellers and dreidels while parents grab those last-minute gifts!

December 24 through December 31

Lighting of the World’s Largest Menorah (Manhattan Edition!)

Lighting is 5:30pm on Sunday through Thursday, 3:30 pm on Friday, 7pm on Saturdays

Coming in 32 feet tall and weighing over 4,000 pounds, this menorah towers over the competition! It’s so tall that the menorah has to be lit by a cherry picker! Every night’s lighting ceremony is accompanied by music, singing, and hot latkes for all attendees, Jewish or not! The lightings will take place in Grand Army Plaza, just south of Central Park, on Fifth Avenue between 58th and 59th streets. No tickets or registration required.

December 25

Jewish Greenwich Village Walking Tour


Celebrate the first night of Hanukkah with a deep dive in to the history of the Jewish people in lower Manhattan with this tour of Greenwich Village. Check out the famous sites in the neighborhood, such as the homes of Hall of Fame baseball player Hank Greenberg and Emma Lazarus, whose poem adorns the Statue of Liberty, as well as the Yiddish Rialto theater district. Register online ahead of time, $25 per person to be collected at the beginning of the tour.

December 27

Hanukkah on Ice NYC at Lasker Rink


Celebrate the festival of lights with ice skating in famous Lasker Rink! This exhilarating afternoon celebration will feature live music and Hanukkah treats along with the skating. Don’t miss the giant ice menorah! Lasker Rink is located at the northern end of Central Park; the closest entrance is 110th and Lenox Avenue. Online discounted pricing is $25 with skate rental, $18 without. At-the-door pricing is $28 with skate rental, $20 without.

December 31

Downtown Lights Hanukkah Candle Lighting Presented by The Jewish Community Project


Enjoy a fun menorah lighting in Washington Market Park on New Year’s Eve. There will be singing along with the lighting, and the whole family is welcome. In case of bad weather, the ceremony will move inside the Jewish Community Project, at 146 Duane Street.