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Bat Yam celebrates with menorah lighting ceremony

By BAT YAM - | Dec 18, 2020


Sanibel’s first-ever outdoor menorah lighting ceremony took place on the east end on Dec. 10 — the first night of Hanukkah, according to officials with the Bat Yam Temple of the Islands.

Masked and socially-distanced celebrants gathered in the parking lot of the Seahorse Shopping Center, where EmOcean owners Tal and Odad Yahav and trustee Alan Fisher conceived the idea to light a 9-foot Hanukkiah. Other center tenants who also sponsored the Hannukiah and other Hannukah decorations were The Lighthouse Café, Tuttle’s Sea Horse Shell Shop, and Sanibel’s Finest Ice Cream.

Rabbi Stephen Fuchs officiated the ceremony and delivered an address. Sanibel City Manager Judie Zimomra, who was present for the event, also spoke. Tanya Hochschild read a Hanukkah story.

Afterward, attendees enjoyed jellied doughnuts — known in Israel as sufganiyot. Together with latkes or potato pancakes, the items are symbolic foods eaten at Hanukkah. Both are fried in oil, which commemorates the miracle of the small jar of oil miraculously lasting for eight days. Annually, Jews celebrate the miracle of the Festival of Lights.