POIPU — The last lighting of the menorah will take place at the St. Regis Princeville starting at 5 p.m. Tuesday.
“Tuesday is the last night of Hanukkah,” said Rabbi Michoel Goldman of Gabi Kauai Wednesday night.
There will be music, a live concert, food, and the lighting of the last light on the menorah.
Goldman and his family were on hand at The Shops at Kukuiula to light the second torch on the menorah, the heart of the Hanukah, or festival of lights, following the recital of Hallel prayer.
Hanukkah, or Chanukah, is the Jewish eight-day festival of lights celebration featuring the lighting of lights on the nine-flame menorah preceded by prayer and followed by song with fried food.
According to the Chabad, the celebration is based on the word “Chanukah” which is defined to mean “dedication,” named because it celebrates the rededication of the Holy Temple which was destroyed by the Greeks in its efforts to force the people of Israel to accept Greek culture and beliefs in lieu of mitzvah observance and belief.
During this effort, the Greeks destroyed the temple and nearly all of the pure oil, symbolized by the special seal on its containers.
When the Jewish people tried to light the Temple’s Menorah, the seven-stemmed candelabrum, they discovered all, save one container, of the oil “contaminated” by the breaking of the seal. This supply was supposed to last just one day, but miraculously, the oil lasted for eight days, or until new oil could be prepared under conditions of ritual purity.
Hanukkah was created by the sages to commemorate and publicize this event.
While Rabbi Michoel provided the explanation, his wife Zisel Goldman, worked through a demonstration creating potato latkes, a traditional fried dish enjoyed during Hanukah. Her demonstration was presented with challenges of arriving late due to the traffic from an auto accident and the rapidly-waning daylight in the cold winds.
“We enjoy it with applesauce, or cream cheese to sweeten it,” said Helaine Perel, general manager of The Shops at Kukuiula who was given the honor of lighting the second light. “This is our taste because we sweeten the bitterness.”
The first light, lit by the shamish, or attendant, pushes back against darkness, said Rabbi Michoel to the audience which included Bruce Ten, his wife Ingrid and son Kawika Levy. The second light doubles the light.
“‘Levy’ is a good Jewish name,” Ingrid said. “My father, Helmut, was a survivor of the holocaust. I would have liked to light the torch, but I will enjoy the latkes, instead.”