Second Annual Chanukah Party in Toluca Lake

Rabbi Moishe Carlebach together with his wife Michal and baby daughter Chaya, Directors of Chabad of Toluca Lake (center), Alice Roth (right) from Councilman Tom Labonge office, in front of Menorah with Judah the Maccabee during Channukah of 2009.

Last year, Toluca Lake made history by having its first ever Grand Menorah Lighting. Many, including celebrities, came to celebrate this momentous occasion and had a joyous time.

“The Menorah publicly proclaims the timeless message of Chanukah- the victory of light over darkness,” said Rabbi Moishe Carlebach, co-director of Chabad of Toluca Lake.

Chanukah, the eight-day festival of lights, which begins this year on the eve of December 1, celebrates the triumph of good over evil, hope over despair, and spirituality over materiality. The story of Chanukah dates back to over 21 centuries ago, when the Seleucids (Syrian Greeks), sought to forcefully Hellenize the People of Israel. Against all odds, a small band of faithful Jews, the Maccabees, defeated the mighty army of the Greeks, drove them out of the Land, reclaimed the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and rededicated it to the service of God. The Miracle of Chanukah occurred when the small single remaining cruse of oil found to light the Temple’s Menorah lasted for eight days instead of one.

This year as well plans to be a memorable event not to be missed. Fritz Coleman, NBC4’s weather cast and honorary mayor of Toluca Lake, Councilman Tom Labonge and others will be making guest appearances. There will be great entertainment including juggling, a mime, live music and a play about the story of Chanukah. The children will enjoy a variety of hands-on crafts including building their own menorah, sand art and will even have a chance to have their photo taken with Judah the Maccabee. Hot latkes, donuts, Moroccan donuts, a great hit last year, and lots more are some of this holiday’s delights to be served. One of the special programs planned for this year’s event is the Children’s Toy drive. Children will have the opportunity to gift wrap toys and write get well cards, which will then be distributed to less fortunate children at the hospital.

You may even come away with prizes worth over $1,000 at the annual grand raffle. Pre-register at the Chabad website www.chabadoftolucalake.com for a free raffle ticket! If you are looking for fun for the whole family come on down and let Chabad light up your night. The celebration will be located at 4444 Lankershim Blvd. in Toluca Lake.