Lighting of the First Candle – December 12, 19:00
The Grand Choral Synagogue. Credit: sinagoga.jeps.ru
At St. Petersburg’s Grand Choral Synagogue (Lermontosvky pr. 2), the first day of Hanukkah is marked by a ceremonial lighting of the first candle on a gigantic menorah. The event will also include fireworks and live music, as well as traditional Hanukkah treats. Entrance is free, you only need pay for the food. If you can’t attend, however, you can subscribe to receive a text message telling you exactly when to light the first candle!
Festive Workshop at Bekitzer Bar – December 16, 11:00
If you’ve had classes at ITMO’s building on Lomonosova 9, you’re probably familiar with the Israeli street food join right around the corner called Bekitzer (Rubinshteyna st. 40). On Dec. 16th, the acclaimed eatery will host a Hanukkah workshop for kids – although adults can attend, too. Chefs will teach the guests how to make traditional chocolate coins and marshmallow dreidels while educating them on the history of this holiday. To attend, call 926-43-42 to reserve a spot.
Fifth-day Concert at YESOD – December 16, 16:00
No Hanukkah celebration is complete without the sweet, filling sufganiyah jelly doughnuts. Credit: depositphotos.com
YESOD – the St. Petersburg House of Jewish Culture – will celebrate the fifth day of Hanukkah with a concert of Jewish, Romani, Russian and Balkanian folk music, along with a great deal of doughnuts, snacks and champagne.
Las Vegas-style Hanukkah – December 16, 22:00
At Osobnyak Loft (Bolshaya Konyushennaya, 9), a truly outlandish celebration will take place. With the support of the Jewish JDC, Israeli Cultural Center in Russia and others, this party takes an unexpected turn and transports its attendants to Las Vegas, of all places. Games, quizzes, costumes and the everpresent doughnuts are to be expected. Tickets are on discount until Dec. 13th; entry cost depends on the number of tokens you get at the party – the more tokens, the more games you’ll get to take part in.
Miracle Fair – December 17, 12:00
Savory latkes (potato pancakes) are a holiday staple - don't forget to fry up a batch! Credit: foodnetwork.com
On the next day after the Fifth-Day COncert, YESOD will host a much more family-friendly event called the “Hanukkah Miracle Fair”. Visitors can listen to the spooky sound of the Theremin – an unusual electronic instrument hailing from St. Petersburg –, as well as see all kinds of performers, such as illusionists and jugglers, attend workshops on chemistry and origami, and, as you might have already guessed, feast on yet more doughnuts! Hanukkah is a very filling holiday.
Enjoy the festivities, and Chag Urim Sameach!
Title photo credit: pjlibrary.org