12 Days of Manual: Hanukkah Celebrations


Thomas Simmons

Despite many Manual students sharing Christmas as a common holiday, a wide range of students celebrate Hanukkah during the holiday season. This year, the celebration begins on Dec. 12 and ends on Dec. 20.

How Students Celebrate

Andrew Tuvlin (12, HSU) stated that a typical night of Hanukkah took place in which every night, his family lit the Menorah. After this, they get together and eat food.

Joey Schuster (11, J&C) celebrates through gathering with his family at his grandmother’s house and eating dinner.

“We light the candles, and open up presents after that,” Schuster said. He always feels grateful for the opportunity to be together with his family at times like these.

Family Traditions

Lilah Weiss (11, MST) has grown up in a family with eight children. Each kid gets their own night, working well with the eight nights of Hanukkah.

“We do competitions, such as poems, videos, Lego buildings and whoever wins the post points gets to draw first for their night,” Weiss said. The winner of the drawing gets to light the candles and open his or her presents that night.

On special food eaten during the holidays, Melissa Scianimanico (12, J&C) said that her family makes latkes, a food similar to potato pancakes. Tuvlin mentioned how his grandmother makes chocolate lollipops, which he loves.

Students’ Relation to Christmas

Tuvlin considers Christmas to just be a boring, uneventful day of the break. He usually is visiting his grandparents and staying at home the whole day because most stores are closed.

“I think I can speak on behalf of most Jews that almost everyone gets Chinese food because they don’t close on Christmas”, Tuvlin said, calling it a Jewish tradition.

Melissa Scianimanico talked about the similarities, saying “I feel like Hanukkah, like Christmas, is just supposed to be something fun. We have Hanukkah decorations too, like Hanukkah trees”. She described that Hanukkah to her is what Christmas is to other people.