Rabbi compares outpouring of love and support that came as a result of Superstorm Sandy to the oil in the miracle of Chanukah
Over 500 participated in Chabad of Merrick-Bellmore’s Chanukah activities & events. The largest events were the Great Menorah Car Parade on Sat., Dec. 8 & the Chanukah Wonderland on Sunday, Dec. 9 which took place at the beautifully decorated clubhouse hall at the Merrick Golf Course.
For the first time, the Merrick Fire Department led the Great Menorah Car Parade, with its sirens blaring and flashing lights! It was followed by a limousine (courtesy of Metro Limousine Service) with a Menorah on its rooftop, and loud Chanukah music was coming out from the loudspeakers of the following car. All parade goers received a bag with Chanukah gifts & a Chanukah balloon which they tied to their vehicles. With the help of the 7th precinct, the car parade made its way down Merrick Road to the Merrick LIRR. There was a true spirit of ‘freedom of religion’ which is one of Chanukah’s main themes.
At the Merrick LIRR, Lawrence Knoll from Merrick was honored with the lighting of the 12 ft. Menorah, with the help of a lift sponsored by Able Equipment Rentals. Before lighting, Chabad Rabbi Shimon Kramer spoke about Chanukah.
“Just over a month ago, we suffered one of the greatest challenges that ever took place, with Superstorm Sandy bringing darkness and devastation to us. We were pressed like those olives [crushed to produce oil for the Menorah]. Yet at the same time, just as from those olives came light, while I was going around Merrick, I saw the light that came out, the unity, hospitality, generosity, and an outpouring of kindness and love from one to another. My friends, just as oil always rises to the top, whatever good we do will always “rise” to the top, to make Long Island a Strong Island."
Legislator Dave Denenberg also gave his greetings at the menorah lighting. After the lighting, the attendees danced to live Chanukah music by Mendel Felberman of Brooklyn. A group of dancing Rabbis from Brooklyn also added to the joy of the warm, balmy evening!
The festivities continued on the following day at the Chanukah Wonderland, which began with adults and children giving a helping hand at filling Merrick’s first Coin-Orah (a Menorah filled with coins)! There were many exciting activities including donut decorating, a latka demo & hot latkes to eat! There were many Chanukah crafts and a spot just for toddlers, awesome face painting and more! Debra Gubin, the lucky winner who gave the closest guess to how many dreidels were in the jar (275!) got to take home the Chanukah Gift Grabber machine!
Chabad thanks the following Chanukah sponsors: Gutterman’s Memorial Chapel, Pediatric Healthcare, Marc & Lisa Fessler, Mr. & Mrs. David Veitsman, Able Equipment Rentals, Metro Limousine Service, Value Service & Repair Corp. of Freeport, and Conlor Service of Freeport.
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