Friday, November 30, 2012

Chanukah in the Deep South

Complete listing of Chanukah events in the region below.

New Orleans Tradition Moves: After 22 years at Riverwalk, Chabad of Louisiana has moved the annual Grand Menorah Lighting to Lakeside Shopping Center in Metairie.
The event, which will be Dec. 11 at 5:30 p.m. this year, has routinely drawn several hundred participants, including mayors, members of Congress and state legislators.

Weather and parking challenges prompted the move, according to Rabbi Mendel Rivkin.

The event features lighting of an 11-foot menorah, latke bar, kids crafts, and dreidel and gelt distribution. There will also be a magic show by Mentally Hyp's Paul Carpenter. Those in attendance can write letters of support to Israel Defense Forces soldiers, and there will be a hollow menorah that will be filled with tzedakah for Hurricane Sandy victims and those in Southern Israel recovering from Hamas rocket attacks from Gaza. There will also be a new Chabad New Orleans Chanukah medallion, presented by Mardi Gras Zone.

Because of the move from Riverwalk, the annual Second Line Chanukah parade that used to follow the event will be the day before, Dec. 10 at 6 p.m., starting at Molly's at the Market, 1107 Decatur, and marching through the French Quarter.

Rick Recht headlines NOLA celebration: A concert by Rick Recht will highlight this year’s New Orleans community Chanukah celebration, Dec. 10 at the Uptown Jewish Community center. In addition to the concert and traditional lighting of the menorah, this popular annual event features an indoor picnic catered by Kosher Cajun, which includes their fried chicken and latkes. Dinner begins at 5:30 p.m., followed by the concert at approximately 6:30 p.m.

Recht will be accompanied by drummer Dennis Stringfield and Bass guitarist Shlomo Ovadya. He is regarded as the top touring musician in Jewish music, with 150 concerts a year. He is the national music spokesman for The PJ Library and executive director of Songleader Boot Camp, a national leadership development immersion program held annually in St. Louis. Recht is also the founder and executive director of Jewish Rock Radio online.

Recht usually brings local performers on stage with him during his concerts, and that will be true in New Orleans. Members of the Community Day School and the JCC Nursery School will join him. Local cantors will also perform at the celebration, including Cantor Joel Colman of Temple Sinai, Cantor Tory May of Gates of Prayer, and Cantor Jamie Marx of Touro Synagogue.

The Chanukah Celebration is free and open to the community, but reservations are appreciated. This event is made possible with to the collaborative participation of the PJ Library /Jewish Children’s Regional Service, the Jewish Endowment Foundation and the Feil Family Foundation.

Pizmon concert in Mobile: Story here.

Peninnah Schram in Montgomery: One of American's premier Jewish storytellers will be at Agudath Israel-Etz Ahayem for the weekend of Dec. 7. She will share a story during the 6:30 p.m. Shabbat service on Dec. 7.

On Dec. 8, the congregation will hold its Chanukah family dinner. Schram will do a program that includes her newest book, "The Apple Tree's Discovery." Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing.

On Dec. 9, she will lead a storytelling workshop for all ages, "Jewish Stories One Generation Tells Another." Starting at 11 a.m., following Kol Ami religion school, the workshop will explore the types of stories and themes that are told, and how to include stories at home, in the synagogue and classroom.

Schram is professor of speech and drama at Stern College of Yeshiva University. She has written 10 books on Jewish folktales and was a 1995 recipient of the Covenant Award for Outstanding Jewish Educator. In 2003, she received the National Storytellers Network 2003 Lifetime Achievement Award.



November 30

“Hammered Hebrews” Chanukah Party. Mississippi State University Hillel. Home of Brad Krock. 6-ish p.m.

December 1
Auburn Hillel Chanukah Party. Beth Shalom, 6 to 8 p.m. Menorah lighting on Samford Lawn, 8 p.m.

Chanukah Story Time at the Tuscaloosa Public Library. 10 a.m. Led by ISJL Education Fellow Sam Kahan, in partnership with Temple Emanu-El.

Chanukah Gift Show and Bake Sale wine and cheese preview. Gates of Prayer Sisterhood, Metairie. 6:30 p.m.

December 2
Chanukah Bowl. Huntsville Chabad. Make a menorah, decorate doughnuts. Plamour Lanes, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. $12 per child.

Maccabee Market. Ahavas Chesed, Mobile. 10 a.m. to noon.

Chanukah Bazaar. Temple Sinai, New Orleans. 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Chanukah Gift Show and Bake Sale. Gates of Prayer Sisterhood, Metairie. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Ole Miss Hillel Latke Study Break. Student Union Ballroom, 2 to 4:30 p.m.

December 6
Chanukah Happy Hour. Temple Beth-El Men’s Club, Birmingham. Place TBA. 6 p.m.

December 7

Share the Spirit: Family to Family Shabbat. Temple Emanu-El and Temple Beth-El, Birmingham. 5:45 p.m. services. Those championing a needy family should bring their unwrapped gifts and place them in the numbered bin corresponding to the assigned family. Participants from N.E. Miles Jewish Day School should bring their gifts to the school on Dec. 6. Emanu-El service preceded by oneg honoring Consecration class, 5 p.m.

Shabbat Latke Dairy Potluck Party. Temple Shalom, Lafayette. Bring your menorah. 6:30 p.m. Service, 7:30 p.m.

December 8
First Night of Chanukah


Huntsville Community Menorah Lighting, with Temple B’nai Sholom Choir and local dignitaries. Big Spring Park. 7 p.m.

Mayer Mitchell Memorial Concert featuring Pizmon, with Pensacola’s Hannah Ripps, and Chanukah Reception. Ahavas Chesed, Mobile. 7 p.m. Chartered bus leaves Temple Beth El, Pensacola, at 5:30 p.m. Bring your own Chanukiah.

Pizmon Shabbat and Deli Lunch. Ahavas Chesed, Mobile. Reserve for lunch in advance (no charge). 9:30 a.m.

Sisterhood Latke Dinner, service and candlelighting, with storyteller Peninah Schram. Temple Beth Or, Montgomery. 6 p.m. $10 adults, $6 ages 5-10, free under 5. Contact Beth Or office for reservations instructions.

Chanukah Dinner. Alabama Hillel, Tuscaloosa. 5:30 p.m.

PJ Library Chanukah event. Barnes and Noble, Pensacola. 3 p.m.

Chinese dinner, candle lighting, gift exchange and new board installation. Bring wrapped gift up to $15 in value with vague riddle or poem hinting at its contents for blind auction. Beth Israel, Metairie. 7:30 p.m.

Israeli Chanukah Party. Metairie Chabad. 8 p.m.

Farewell Dinner for Rabbi Packman. B’nai Israel, Monroe. Warehouse #1. 7 p.m.

December 9

Sisterhood Latke Lunch and raffle. Temple Beth-El, Birmingham. Religious school performance, 11:30 a.m. Luncheon noon. $10 adults, $5 children. Blood drive, 9 a.m. to noon.

Grand Ice Menorah Lighting. Bais Ariel Chabad, Birmingham, 5 p.m. No charge. Followed by Glow in the Dark Chanukah Party, with arts and crafts, olive press workshop, latke bar and more. $10 adults, $7 children.

Community Batsheva Concert. Temple B’nai Sholom, Huntsville. 3 p.m. Adults $15, seniors $10, teens $5, children free.

Huntsville Chabad Public Menorah Lighting. Bridge Street. Family activities, 4:30 p.m. Lighting, 5 p.m.

Latke Party and Bingo. Etz Chayim, Huntsville. Adults $7, religious school children no charge.

Adult Chanukah Party. White Elephant gift exchange. B’nai Israel, Baton Rouge. 5 to 8 p.m.

Baton Rouge Hadassah Gift Wrap Event at Barnes and Noble, Perkins Rowe. Through Dec. 24.

Religious School Chanukah Carnival and Family Brunch. Northshore Jewish Congregation, Mandeville. 9:30 a.m.

New Orleans Chabad Metairie Family Event. Scavenger hunt at 4:45 p.m., Lakeside Mall. Dinner and game show at 6:45 p.m. $12 adults, $8 children, $50 family (by Dec. 4). $20 adults, $12 children after Dec. 4.

Beth Israel, Metairie, Kids Chanukah Party. 4 p.m.

Jewish Youth Groups Chanukah Party at Woldenberg Village, New Orleans. 1 p.m.

Krewe du Jieux and Anshe Sfard Latke Party. At Anshe Sfard, New Orleans. Bring packaged kosher food, kosher wine and/or unflavored beer. 7 to 9 p.m.

Shreveport Community Chanukah Party and Lunch, with both congregations and the Federation. B’nai Zion. Exotic latkes, crafts, build your own menorah. Noon to 2 p.m.

Chanukah Dinner. B'nai Israel, Columbus, Miss. 6:30 p.m. Mississippi State Hillel also invited.

Chanukah Party. B’nai Israel, Hattiesburg. 5:30 p.m.

Sisterhood Chanukah Dinner. Beth Israel, Jackson. 5:30 p.m. $15 adults, $5 children under 12. Reserve by Dec. 3.

Chanukah Service, Pot luck dinner and dreidel spinning championship. B’nai Israel, Tupelo. 5 p.m.

December 10

New Orleans Community Chanukah Celebration. Rick Recht concert, fried chicken dinner. Uptown Jewish Community Center. Dinner at 5:30 p.m., concert at 6:30 p.m.

Eighth Annual New Orleans Second Line Chanukah Parade with the Jewbirth Brass Band. Starts at Molly's at the Market, 1107 Decatur, 6 p.m. Finishes at Cafe du Monde at 7:30 p.m. Non-permitted parade, so participants must stay on sidewalks.

Chanukah on the Quad. Tulane Hillel and Chabad. Performance by Tulane Marching Band. 5 p.m.

December 11

Joy Club Chanukah Luncheon. Levite Jewish Community Center, Birmingham. Noon.

Leisure Club Chanukah Lunch and Bingo, with Gan Shalom Preschool performance. Ahavas Chesed, Mobile. 11:30 a.m.

Chanukah at Lakeside. Chabad of Louisiana. Pottery Barn entrance, Lakeside Shopping Center, Metairie. Menorah lighting, latke bar, kids crafts and activities, magician, letter writing to Israeli soldiers. Starts at 5:30 p.m., ceremony at 6:30 p.m.

"The December Dilemma." The Braided Candle interfaith couples chavurah. Touro Synagogue, New Orleans. Nosh, 6:30 p.m. Program, 7 p.m.

Temple Sinai, New Orleans, 20s and 30s Latke Cookoff. 7 p.m. Home of Ben Levy, RSVP for the address. Reserve by calling Janine Jankovitz, (504) 861-3683.

December 12

Chanukah Extravaganza. Knesseth Israel, Birmingham. Bingo, raffle, Chanukah foods. 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

You Belong in Birmingham Chanukah Celebration. Daniel Odrezin will speak on his trip to Israel during Operation Pillar of Defense. B&A Warehouse. 5:30 p.m.

New Orleans Hadassah Family Chanukah Party. Home of Nita Joan Sams, Metairie. Latkes by Lee Sands. Crafts and entertainment, Chanukah songs led by Tory May. Bring your own menorah and candles. $18/person, $25/family. 6 p.m.

Beth Israel Sisterhood, Jackson, Chanukah Luncheon. Noon.

December 13
New Orleans Chabad Celebrity Chef Latke Cookoff for Young Jewish Professionals. Several local chefs will compete. Uptown Jewish Community Center, 7 p.m.

Community Day School Chanukah Program, performed by the students. Shir Chadash, Metairie. 6 p.m.

December 14

Chanukah Potluck Dinner and Service. Temple Emanu-El, Dothan. 6 p.m.

Chanukah Party. Temple B'nai Sholom, Huntsville. Popeye's chicken, latkes and doughnuts. Dreidel competition and crafts. 6 p.m.

Joint Service, Family Chanukah and New Member Welcome Dinner. Springhill Avenue Temple, Mobile. 6 p.m. $12 adults, $8 children under 10 for Springhill Avenue members, Ahavas Chesed Men’s Club covering costs for their members. Reservations requested by Nov. 30.

Shabbat Chanukah Service and Party, and Religious School sleepover. Beth Shalom, Fort Walton Beach. 6 p.m. religious school families dinner. Service, 7:30 p.m.

Chanukah Celebration. Temple Beth El, Pensacola. 6 p.m. service, 6:45 p.m. dinner. Bring side dish or dessert. Reserve by Dec. 12.

Candle Lighting and Potluck Dinner. Beth Shalom, Baton Rouge. Dinner 5 p.m., service 6 p.m.

Chanukah Service with music by Michael Roth and Jessica Yellen. B’nai Israel, Baton Rouge. 7 p.m.

Chanukah Service and Family Night. Temple Sinai, Lake Charles. 6 p.m.

Temple Sinai, New Orleans, Night of 100 Menorahs. Family Service, 6:15 p.m. Lighting of outdoor Chanukiah, 7 p.m. Sisterhood Chanukah Dinner, 7:15 p.m.

Latke Cookoff and Chanukah Dinner. Touro Synagogue, New Orleans 7 p.m. (Service, 6 p.m.) Vote for the Golden Skillet. Crafts, Corky’s barbecue. $20 adults, $10 ages 12 and under, $35 families (if reserved by Dec. 7, higher after).

Chanukah Family Service and Dinner. Gates of Prayer, Metairie. 6 p.m. Adults $10, children $5. Reserve by Dec. 9.

Chanukah Family Service and Dinner. Shir Chadash, Metairie. 6:30 p.m.

Northshore Jewish Congregation, Mandeville, First Friday Shabbat and Torah Service. Kinder Shabbat, 6 p.m. Pot luck dinner and menorah lighting, 6:30 p.m. Service 7:30 p.m.

Shabbat Service and Chanukah Party. B’nai Israel, Monroe. 6 p.m.

Chanukah Service and Oneg. Bring your own Chanukiah. B’nai Zion, Shreveport. 6 p.m.

December 15

Family Chanukah Celebration. N.E. Miles Jewish Day School, Birmingham. 6:15 to 7:30 p.m.

Chanukah Mitzvah Project. B’nai Israel, Baton Rouge. Habitat for Humanity, 4756 Jean Street. 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

New Orleans Mobile Menorah Parade. Starts at 7:30 p.m., ends with party at Chabad Uptown.

Eighth Night Chanukah Extravaganza. Shir Chadash, Metairie. Havdalah, singing and candle lighting, 6 p.m. Pizza, latkes and dessert, 7 p.m. “Bring Your Own (kosher) Beer.” Bring gift ($1 or under) in unsealed brown paper bag for Grab Bag, prize given for most original gift.

Krewe du Jieux Latke Fry-Off. Home of Will Harrell and Simone Levine, New Orleans. 7 p.m.


December 16

Chanukah Family Fun Day. Temple Emanu-El, Birmingham. 9:30 a.m. Brotherhood Chanukah Lunch and raffle, noon. $10 adults, $4 children.

Chanukah Storytime. Barnes and Noble, The Summit, Birmingham. 10:15 a.m.

Master storyteller Hanoch Teller. Etz Chayim, Huntsville. 1 p.m.

Springhill Avenue Temple, Mobile, Social Action Community Dinner. 5:30 p.m.

Beth Israel visit to Woldenberg Village, New Orleans. 10 a.m. Meet at Beth Israel, Metairie, at 9:30 a.m. to caravan.

Chanukah program at St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans. Catholic Cultural Heritage Center Concert Series. Vivaldi’s “Gloria” performed by St. Louis Cathedral Choir, followed by Chanukah remarks by Temple Sinai Rabbi Edward Cohn. Excerpts from Handel’s “Judas Maccabaeus” featuring Cantor Joel Colman and Temple Sinai choir. 5:30 p.m.

December 23

Birmingham Hospitality Network gift wrap booth. Brookwood Village Food Court. Temple Emanu-El and Temple Beth-El. Also Dec. 24.

Oy to the World Potluck Dinner. You Belong in Birmingham. 6:30 p.m. Home of Mary and David Kimerling.

December 24

Jewish Federation of Huntsville and North Alabama volunteers at Botanical Gardens’ Galaxy of Lights. 5 to 9 p.m. Contact Eva Berman, (256) 534-1154.

Chinese Dinner and Movie. Temple Beth-El, Pensacola. 6:30 p.m.

Chinese Food on Christmas Eve. Young Jews of the Crescent City and the JFGNO Young Adult Division. Five Happiness, New Orleans. 6:30 p.m. $6. After-party location being voted on.

Chai-Nese (kosher) Dinner and Movie. Shir Chadash, Metairie. 7 p.m. Catered by Ms. Shirley from Royal China. Followed by "Crossing Delancey." Open to the community. Adults $20, ages 5-13 $10, under 5 free (by Dec. 10). From Dec. 11 to 20, adults $25, children $12.50. No reservations after Dec. 20.


December 25

Birmingham Jewish community serves Christmas lunch at Grace Episcopal Church in Woodlawn. 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

23rd Annual Pinchhitters Program. Springhill Avenue Temple, Mobile. Providence Hospital, Springhill Memorial and Mobile Infirmary. 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Merry Mitzvah Day. Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans. Children’s Hospital. 9 to 11:30 a.m.