Let there be light! Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is eight days, from sundown on Sunday, Dec. 2 to sundown on Monday, Dec. 10. Whether you are lighting a Menorah or waiting for Santa, put these these Hanukkah events on your calendar.
You don’t have to be Jewish to enjoy these family-friendly lighting ceremonies, and other celebrations, and the food and music that goes with them.
Everything on our NYC on the Cheap list is free or no more than $25, so you can celebrate Hanukkah on the cheap and get more NYC for less Hanukkah gelt.
SEE ALSO –
Today, Thursday, Nov. 29
Head to the Whole Foods Market on the Upper West Side for a FREE Hanukkah event, that includes a Jam Fest, of live music of Hanukkah themed songs for kids and a tasting of some traditional Hanukkah foods including Potato Latkes. The event also includes learning about the traditions that make Hanukkah so special, and the first 100 guests will receive a gift bag.
- 4pm to 6:30pm at 888 Columbus Ave., at 98th Street.
More free Hanukkah food treats
For eight miraculous nights, starting Dec. 2, the first 100 people to line up at the iconic Jewish deli’s Brooklyn outpost will get FREE latkes, and the apple sauce or sour cream to go with them. The promotion is at 6pm daily at the DeKalb Market Hall food court in Downtown Brooklyn. Also, on the first night, there will be music, dreidls, puppets and dancing.
Menorah lighting ceremonies
Every Evening, Dec. 2 to Dec. 10
World’s Largest Menorah
Join the FREE nightly lighting ceremonies at the 32-foot-high, gold-colored, 4,000-pound steel holiday icon, at the Grand Army Plaza of Central Park, better known as the area between the front of the The Plaza hotel and the Apple store on the other side of Fifth Avenue. Lightings are at sunset, around 5:30pm, although it’s earlier on Friday (3:30pm) before the Sabbath, and later on Saturday (after the Sabbath). Fifth Ave., at 59th St.
- Tip – Because of increased security around Trump Tower, and the construction at the Apple Store, arrive via any route that avoids Fifth Avenue between 56th and 57th Streets and 59th St. between Madison and Fifth.
Also 32 feet tall, and equally impressive, but not in the Guinness World Records, so it is just called “largest” not “world’s largest”. Lighting times are the same. In addition to singing and dancing, on the first night there will be free hot latkes. At Grand Army Plaza, Prospect Park, Brooklyn. Sponsored by Chabad Park Slope , which spells it Chanukah, not Hanukkah, and also FREE
Lightings are as follows:
- 1st Night of Chanukah, Sunday, Dec. 2 LIVE KICKOFF CONCERT begins at 4:30 PM
- 2nd Night of Chanukah, Monday, Dec. 3 at 6:00 PM
- 3rd Night Of Chanukah, Tuesday, Dec. 4 at 6:00 PM
- 4th Night Of Chanukah, Wednesday, Dec. 5 at 6:0 PM
- 5th Night Of Chanukah, Thursday, Dec. 6 at 6:00 PM
- 6th Night Of Chanukah, Friday, Dec. 7, at 3:30 PM
- 7th Night Of Chanukah, Saturday, Dec. 8 at 7:00 PM
- 8th Night Of Chanukah, Sunday, Dec. 9 at 6:00 PM
Come to Washisngton Square Park to celebrate Chanukah with Chabad House Bowery
The Menorah will be lit for each night of Chanukah starting on December 2 with a celebration of Chanukah in the Park at sundown. Chabad House will be there leading the celebration. The Menorah will be in the Park until Monday, December 10.
- 4pm to 6pm on Sunday, and 6pm every other night of Chanukah, at Garibaldi Plaza in Washington Square Park.
SEE ALSO The Story of Hanukkah
Sunday, Dec. 2
This annual interactive event features music, food, and educational activities for families with children. Play dreidels, decorate menorahs, and nosh on latkes and jelly donuts.
at the Museum of Jewish Heritage features food, music, and hands-on activities. Recommended for children ages 3 to 10.
- Tickets are $14 for adults, $10 for kids 6-14, and FREE for kids younger than six.
- 11am yo 1pm, at the Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge Street.
Build a sculptural Hanukkah lamp with funky found objects, Jewish Museum tradition. Dance to the pop-rock tunes of Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights, sketch Hanukkah lamps from around the globe on a gallery tour, watch a unique Hanukkah story come to life through a drawing performance by Jeff Hopkins, and collaborate on a giant light collage. FREE with museum admission. RSVP recommended.
Celebrate the festival of lights as a family at the Jewish Museum! Build a sculptural Hanukkah lamp with funky found objects, dance to the pop-rock tunes of Josh & The Jamtones, and sketch Hanukkah lamps from around the globe on a gallery tour. Watch a unique Hanukkah story come to life through a drawing performance by Jeff Hopkins and collaborate on a giant work of art.
Family Day Schedule:
Drop-In Art Workshops
- Found Object Menorah Sculptures – Design whimsical Hanukkah menorah sculptures with found objects such as wood shapes, spools, wire, and metallic forms inspired by new Hanukkah lamps on view in Scenes from the Collection.
- Colorful Light Window Books – Using brightly colored cellophane and cut-outs to create playful peek-a-boo windows and light shapes for your accordion book.
- Painted Holiday Scenes – Inspired by the paintings of Chagall, design a flying family scene with a Hanukkah theme using watercolor and layered collage.
- Collaborative Work of Art – Collaborate on a large scale Hanukkah sculpture using cardboard, colored tape, giant shapes, mesh and more inspired by the whimsical work of Larry Kagan on view.
11:30 am and 2 pm: Two Concerts — Josh & the Jamtones
Jump to the roots-reggae-pop tunes of Josh & the Jamtones with sounds that bring the whole family to their feet. Fronted by singer/songwriter Josh Shriber, the Jamtones have taken the kindie music scene by storm with their rock-and-roll dance parties. Hear funky twists on Hanukkah tunes such as “Oh Hanukkah,” their original “Hanukkah Time,” and other family favorites for the holiday.
1 pm: Drawing Performance — Hanukkah Stories Coming to Life
Families will see an exciting tale unfold in this eye-catching performance using live drawing, animation, and narration with movement. On wall-sized paper Jeff Hopkins brings characters and action to life in this one-of-a-kind happening created for Hanukkah Family Day.
12:30 and 3:00 pm: Spotlight Tours – An educator will conduct a brief gallery tour with a sketching opportunity that will spotlight Hanukkah lamps from around the world in The Jewish Museum’s renowned collection.
All day – Explore the galleries with a Hanukkah lamp hunt and family guides for our special exhibitions.
- Free with Museum Admission, admission free for children 18 and under
- 11am to 4pm. The Jewish Museum is at Fifth Ave. at 98th St.
- Admission to the Jewish Museum is FREE on Saturdays. See the NYCOTC list of FREE Museum Admission days and times.
Museum of Jewish Heritage
Also at Museum of Jewish Heritage on Sunday, Dec. 2
See a new original children’s play in English and celebrate Hannukah with Kompot.
The story is: A kind young ambitious light-filled boy, Simon makes his way to America. On his journey, he’s shipwrecked and marooned on an iceberg. Through these obstacles, Simon doesn’t give up the Chanukah celebration. He befriends a polar bear on the iceberg and together they share this Chanukah light and a sense of kindness towards one another. One good deed leads to another. What then happens during Hannukah with Simon and the Bear… you’ll have to come find out on December 2nd. Following the performance, there will be an Arts & Crafts activity about Hanukkah.
- 11am at Museum Of Jewish Heritage, Events Hall (2nd Floor)
- Tickets are $30 PER family so feel free to bring the babushkas and dedushkas! Get tickets here.
Menorah on the High Line
Hit the High Line and kindle a glow-in-the-dark Menorah (on the porch at 15th Street)! With Chanukah arts and crafts and music, chocolate gelt, dreidels, doughnuts and latkas, and lots of fun for the whole family. FREE.
Monday, Dec. 3
What’s not to love about live music, kosher food, and a giant hand-carved ice menorah. This annual celebration at Wollman Rink is always popular, so sign up before it sells out.
- 6pm to 9pm
- $28 with skate rental
Tues., Dec 4,
- 6pm to 8pm
- FREE, but registration is encouraged.
Thurs., Dec. 6
- FREE, but registration is encouraged to manage space.
- 6pm to 8pm at the Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge Street
- Brief remarks from the collector and exhibition curator begin around 6:30pm.
Okay, it’s not precisely a Hanukkah celebration, but who doesn’t love marionettes, especially at the holidays? And who doesn’t think NYC is lucky to have one of the last puppeteer theater groups in the USA. And who doesn’t want to take the kids to see the original musical production Yeti, Set, Snow! for ticket costing just $8-$12. It’s one of the best family bargains in NYC. The original production celebrates friendship and holiday traditions including Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa.
Buy tickets online now, with no service fee, to get the times and dates of your choice, especially for holiday performances.
Saturday Dec 8
Celebrate the holidays with Brooklyn Conservatory of Music’s Community Klezmer Band, featuring renowned klezmer artists, in partnership with Congregation Beth Elohim. Warm up with latkes, Hanukkah crafts, and more.
- 3:30pm-5:30 pm, 247 Garfield Place, Brooklyn.
- Tickets are $20, FREE admission for children to ten years old
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